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Roman wall painting – Ancient Rome

By | 2017-08-31T14:16:41+00:00 August 31st, 2017|Art, Romans|

First Style Roman wall painting (now in the Louvre) There was also a lot of wall painting to decorate the walls of houses during this time. The wall painting of the first century AD is sometimes divided into four different styles, mainly because of the many different styles of wall painting that were found at [...]

Who was Velazquez? Spanish art history

By | 2017-08-04T15:58:00+00:00 August 4th, 2017|Art, Modern Europe|

Velazquez (self-portrait), ca. 1650 AD, when he was about fifty years old. Diego Velazquez was one of the best artists of the generation after Rubens. He was born in 1599, in Seville, in southern Spain. He may have been descended from Spanish Jews who had been forced to convert to Catholicism a hundred years earlier. Young [...]

Who was Titian? Renaissance Art

By | 2017-08-04T15:50:49+00:00 August 4th, 2017|Art, Modern Europe|

Titian's self-portrait of himself in old age The Renaissance painter Titian was born about 1490 AD, near the Italian city of Venice. He was a little younger than other Renaissance artists. When Titian was born, Leonardo da Vinci was middle-aged. Michelangelo was already a teenager, and Raphael was seven years old. Titian's father managed local castles and mines [...]

Peter Paul Rubens – European art history

By | 2017-08-04T15:40:52+00:00 August 4th, 2017|Art, Modern Europe|

Rubens (self-portrait), 1620 AD Peter Paul Rubens was born in Germany in 1577. At that time, the Holy Roman Emperors were weak and there were a bunch of civil wars going on. His father, who was a lawyer, was also a Calvinist - a Protestant. The family fled to Cologne before Rubens was born, because of fighting between [...]

Raphael – Biography – Renaissance art

By | 2017-08-04T14:52:13+00:00 August 4th, 2017|Art, Modern Europe|

Raphael's early selfie as a teenager Raphael, Titian, Michelangelo, and Leonardo da Vinci were the four greatest painters of the Renaissance in Italy. Raphael was born in 1483, when Michelangelo was eight years old and Leonardo was already grown up; Titian was a little younger. With their new Chinese compasses, the first European ships were just beginning to sail south to Congo and Angola. Columbus reached the Caribbean when Raphael was nine [...]

Leonardo da Vinci Biography – Science and Art

By | 2017-09-27T17:52:48+00:00 August 4th, 2017|Art, Modern Europe|

Leonardo da Vinci, artist and scientist - a self-portrait Leonardo da Vinci was born near Florence, in Italy, in 1452 AD. His father was a clerk, and his parents weren't married. Until he was five, Leonardo lived with his mother. Then he moved to his father's house, where he was home-schooled in Latin and math. When Leonardo was 14, [...]

Pieter Brueghel – European Art

By | 2017-08-04T14:18:03+00:00 August 4th, 2017|Art, Modern Europe|

Pieter Brueghel, Children's Games (1560 AD) As European traders began to sail directly to China in the late 1400s AD, they brought back all kinds of new things to Europe: porcelain vases, paper fans, silk cloth. Pieter Brueghel lived in the Netherlands, which was then part of the Holy Roman Empire of Charles [...]

Giotto in Florence and Assisi

By | 2017-08-01T07:35:38+00:00 August 1st, 2017|History|

St. Francis giving away his cloak, from Assisi, Italy, probably by Giotto Giotto was an Italian painter around 1300 AD. Giotto was originally from Florence. He was born about 1265 AD. As a teenager, he may have been a student of the great painter Cimabue. It's possible that he suffered from dwarfism. When Giotto (jee-OTT-oh) grew up, he [...]

Donatello – sculptor in Florence

By | 2017-07-31T22:44:26+00:00 July 31st, 2017|Art, Medieval|

David, by Donatello Donatello was an Italian sculptor, from Florence, in the later Middle Ages. He was born in Florence about 1386 AD, so when he grew up he was a friend of the architect Brunelleschi who built the big dome of Florence's new cathedral. Donatello helped Ghiberti make the doors. Like his friend Brunelleschi, Donatello was interested in ancient Roman art. [...]

Cimabue – Giotto’s teacher – Medieval art

By | 2017-07-31T22:40:26+00:00 July 31st, 2017|Art, Medieval|

Cimabue's Madonna and Jesus, in Louvre Museum, Paris Cimabue (really Cenno di Pepe, but people call him Cimabue) was born in Florence, Italy, around 1240 AD, in the Middle Ages. Cimabue (chee-MA-boo-ay) worked in and around Florence his whole life. He worked on the mosaics decorating the inside of the baptistry and the cathedral in Florence. Fresco of Jesus, from the [...]