“The aim of the art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance”
I have always been fascinated with Art. Although, I must admit that I can’t review any artwork, or consider myself to be qualified enough to do so, but the thing I look for in any art piece is- the trick. I somehow instinctively feel that the artist always tries to conceal something within its work. Sometimes I get it.. many times I don’t, then I just end up appreciating the composition and move on. Last year, I was gripped by the Renaissance movement and spent a lot of time watching documentaries on Youtube, reading few blogposts and books on the subject. This year, I was fortunate enough to see those works in person. I have to concede they were just as much fascinating in real-life as they were in books.
The Renaissance movement has been critical in history of art. It was the revival of a culture lost, a light at the end of a really dark tunnel that seized Europe for centuries. It was time when artists looked back and rediscovered knowledge. Brunelleschi, for example, studied the Pantheon closely to uncover the key principles that he would later apply to build the Duomo of Florence Cathedral. The same dome which was not built for almost two centuries because the architects just didn’t know how to. While at the same time you had artists like Da Vinci and Michelangelo who meticulously examined dead bodies to get the nuances of the human anatomy. If you see Michelangelo’s Pieta, you would notice every single muscle of Jesus’s body is carved out so beautifully. It looks so real..so alive with emotion. No wonder it’s a masterpiece and Michelangelo was only 25 when he built this. It was a time of such great revival not just of the arts, it was music, architecture, literature; it was a revival of creativity in a nutshell.
While there’s so much beauty to appreciate from this time, I did feel that it was restricted by religious motifs. Most of the works were either commissioned by the Church or by wealthy merchants who wanted their portraits made. I suppose the artists must’ve been stifled by the lack of freedom to try different themes. Nevertheless, they have surely made magic with whatever resources they had.