THE RENAISSANCE IN TUSCANY
The centre of the birth of the Renaissance movement in Italy was the city of Florence. From the middle of the 15th century onwards, the gloomy way of thinking of the Middle Ages was questioned by some thinkers. Life should not be so hard and should be seen as an overcoming of this world as a preparation for the hereafter!
The origins of the Renaissance movement in Tuscany
Above all through the study of earlier civilizations, such as the Romans, Etruscans and Greeks, it was remembered to affirm the present and to live the joy of life and beauty of the spirit. The rebirth (rinascita) of the ancient tradition was brought into being – knowledge, creativity and devotion to the fine things of life. In short: The Renaissance movement was born!
Florence offered the ideal breeding ground for artistic ideas to blossom and live them out. In the 13th and 14th centuries, the capital of Tuscany became truly rich through industrious businessmen and the powerful Medici family of bankers. They supported the artistic heyday with large sums of money and transformed Florence into a magnificent Renaissance city. Huge progress has been made in the fields of science, literature, the arts and technology.
Many of the influential Renaissance artists not only come from Tuscany, but have also made their mark here. Even today you can still find works of art of that period, especially masterpieces of architecture, sculptures and magnificent paintings.
The most important Renaissance artworks in Tuscany
The dome of the Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral in Florence, designed by Brunelleschi and completed in the mid-15th century, is considered an architectural masterpiece. In the “Galleria dell’Accademia” you can visit the most famous Renaissance sculpture, Michelangelo’s “David”, which was completed at the beginning of the 16th century. The aim of the Renaissance artists was to depict the human body as precisely and in detail as possible.
This is also reflected in numerous Renaissance paintings. The frescoes by Fra Angelico in the Monastery of San Marco in Florence show angels of haunting tenderness. In the chapel of the “Palazzo Medici-Ricardi” his disciple Benozzo Gozzoli has immortalized himself impressively with his festive frescoes of the “Train of Kings”.
In the middle of the 16th century, the High Renaissance flourished in Tuscany. The versatility of its most important representatives was particularly striking. Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci were considered the multi-talents of the High Renaissance.
The universal genius Michelangelo Buonarroti is considered one of the greatest artistic personalities of all! As a master builder, he was responsible, among other things, for the construction management of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome, and as a sculptor he produced the aforementioned “David”. As a painter he immortalized himself in the fresco cycle in the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican, which is one of the most important masterpieces worldwide.
Leonardo da Vinci, on the other hand, was a master builder, sculptor, painter, researcher and designer. Like no other Renaissance artist, art and science merge into one unit! He worked in Florence, Milan, Rome and France.
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