Art Music Literature Term Paper

Length: 4 pages Sources: 1+ Subject: Art  (general) Type: Term Paper Paper: #94176966 Related Topics: Baroque, Contemporary Art, Classical Music, Contemporary Literature
Excerpt from Term Paper :

Baroque Art:


The artistic period known as the Renaissance continued without any sharp stylistic changes well into the 17th and 18th centuries; however, the art of this later period is often called Baroque, although there is no single Baroque style or set of stylistic ideals. Yet within the last one hundred years or so, Baroque has taken on the overall designation for the art of the period from circa 1600 to 1750. More recently, scholars have come to understand that Baroque styles were very different from those linked to the Renaissance. For example, during the Renaissance, art tended to be rather static, but during the Baroque, art became very dynamic and encompassed passion, opulence, a taste for the theatrical and introduced the virtuoso, being an artist that stood out from his contemporaries as a truly gifted genius.

Historically, the Baroque Period entailed many artistic ideals, especially those associated with "the senses and the delights of sensuous experience" (Held, 1954, 67). And although the guilty fear of pleasure remained from the time of Hieronymus Bosch, painting acquired a richly expressive language that presented themes and motifs that involved the description, presentation, conflict and the resolution of human emotions. In many of the great Baroque paintings, the viewer can easily distinguish luxury and unlimited magnificence and splendor, linked to the often extravagant life of the court. The styles of dress were also ornate and sometimes served nothing more than as a public spectacle for one's social position.


In Italy, the age of the Baroque Period has been linked to the Catholic reaction to the advancement of Protestantism; thus, there can be no


One of the most talented and gifted painters in Italy during this time was Michelangelo de Meris, also known as Caravaggio (1573-1610), named after the town in northern Italy from which he originally came. Like many of his contemporaries, Caravaggio was deeply involved in the study of nature and, for the most part, focused his attention on the common people of the street. His outspoken displeasure over the classical masters "drew much criticism from his contemporaries, some of whom called him the "Anti-Christ of painting" (Payne, 1969, 178).

The Madonna of Loreto:

One of his most famous paintings that reveals the true nature of the Baroque Period can be found in The Madonna of Loreto (1603-1606, oil on canvas) which presents the Madonna, being the mother of Jesus, with the familiar halo around her head, a symbol of her passion as the mother of Christ. In her arms, she holds the naked baby Jesus, a rather common image found in earlier religious paintings and the plain, swaddling clothes of the child. The two figures in the foreground -- a man and a woman -- are kneeling down in reverence for Madonna and her child and are dressed as commoners, perhaps as shepherds, in a simple, rustic style. However, the Madonna is dressed in a red gown that symbolizes her piety and virginity. As an example of Baroque art, this painting conveys all the passion of the human senses which can be seen in the Madonna's semi-closed eyes, the facial expression of the child and the awe and reverence in the faces of the two admirers in the foreground. Human emotion is also present, especially in the way that the Madonna is presenting her child to the common man and woman as they would have lived in Italy as peasants among the rich and powerful in papal Rome.

Peter Paul Rubens:

While Caravaggio was painting in Italy, another aspect of the Baroque Period was occurring in Flanders.…

Sources Used in Documents:


"Caravaggio: 1571-1610." (2005). Internet. Olga's Gallery. Accessed May 16, 2005.

Held, Julius S. (1954). Peter Paul Rubens: 1577-1640. New York: Harry N. Abrams.

Payne, Robert. (1969). Caravaggio. London: W.H. Allen.

"Peter Paul Rubens." (2005). Internet. The Artchive. Accessed May 16, 2005.

Cite this Document:

"Art Music Literature" (2005, May 17) Retrieved August 19, 2022, from

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"Art Music Literature", 17 May 2005, Accessed.19 August. 2022,

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