The History of Art And The Curious Lives of Famous Painters



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Northern Renaissance Woodcut Print

Many painters of the Northern Renassaince were dallied in printmaking. According to author Jennie Ellis Keysor "The earlier works of Durer are largely wood-cuts, the art which more than any other was the artist’s very own. The discussions of the times regarding religious matters made a demand for books even at great cost. It was a time when written and spoken words held people’s attention, but when, in addition, the text was illustrated by strong pictures the power and reach of the books were increased ten-fold. A place thus seemed waiting for Albrecht Durer, the master wood-engraver.

His first great series was the Apocalypse—pictures to illustrate the book of Revelations. Such a subject gave Durer ample scope for the use of his imagination. Then came the story of Christ’s agony twice engraved in small and large size. These were followed by still another series illustrating the life of Mary. This series was especially popular, for it glorified family life—the family life of the Germans, so worthy, so respected. To be sure, Mary is represented as a German woman tending a dear German child."

The Four Horsemen, from The Apocalypse by Albrecht Dürer

The Antichrist 1478 by Michael Wolgemut


Important Words, People, Phrases, Characteristics related to the Northern Renaissance Art Movement -  allegorical painting,  rebirth, invention of oil painting,   Hieronymus Bosch, Limbourg Brothers, Desiderius Erasmus,  Robert Campin, Jan Van Eyck, Jean Fouquet, Albrecht Dürer, Johannes Gutenberg, Johann Reuchlin, Martin Luther, rise of the merchant class,  Protestant Reformation, Calvinisim, glazing, impasto, scriptorium, illuminator, invention of the printing press, woodcuts, engravings, Antwerp School, Guild of Saint Luke, commerce, Flemish School, Northern Europe, Antwerp School, Flanders, Bruges, renewed interest in classical learning,  mythological scenes, genre painting, landscapes, portraits, moralizing overtones, human vices, lust, paradise, spirituality, piousness, living a simple life, reformHuman Reasoning,  tradesmen at work, idyllic scenes of peasantsplaying games, feasting,  linear perspective, \Heliocentric Theory, humour, satire,  spiritually significant, illuminated manuscriptidealized biblical themes, scriptorium, emotion, illuminator,  iconoclast, Age of Discovery, Virgin and Child, axonometric drawing, curiosity about the natural world,  realistic use of colours and lightOld Testament stories, Gospel parables, The Blackdeath,  Christian symbolism

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Ref. Great Artists, Vol 1 by Jennie Ellis Keysor