Presentation on theme: "Byzantine Art Early Byzantine c.e."— Presentation transcript:
1 Byzantine Art Early Byzantine 500-726 c.e. Iconoclastic Controversy c.e.Middle or High Byzantine c.e.Late Byzantine c.e.
2 Key Ideas of Byzantine Art The Byzantine Empire was born out of the remains of the Roman Empire and continued many elements of the Roman classical tradition, but in a Christian frameworkByzantine painting specialized in mosaics, icons, and manuscript illuminationByzantine art had two traditions, one reflecting the classical past and a more hieratic style that represented medieval art- often in the same workByzantine architects invented the pendentive and squinch for buildings known for their mysterious and shadowy interiors.
13 Hagia Sophia 532-537 Anthemius of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus Combination of Centrally and axially planned churchExterior plain and massive, little decorationAltar at the end of nave but emphasis is placed over the area covered by the domeDome supported by pendentivesLarge central dome, with 40 windows at the base symbolically acting as a halo over the congregation when filled with light.
14 Hagia Sophia Cornice unifies the space. Large fields for mosaics: at one time had 4 acres of gold mosaics on wallsMany windows punctuate the wall spacesMinarets added in the Islamic periodPatrons were Emperor Justinian and Empress Theodora, who commissioned the work after the burning of the original building in the Nike revolt.
18 San Vitale 526-547c.e., Ravenna Eight sided church Plain exterior except porch added later In RenaissanceLarge windows for illuminating interior designsInterior has thin columns and open arched spacesDematerialization of the mass of the structure
19 Justinian and Attendants, c,547, mosaic from San Vitale, Ravenna
20 Justinian and Attendants To his left the clergy, to his right the militaryDressed in royal purple and goldSymmetry, frontalityHolds a paren for the EucharistSlight impression of procession forward: cf. Roman Imperial worksFigures have no volume, seem to float, and yet step on each other’s feet
21 Minimal background: green base at feet, golden background indicates timelessness Maximianus identified, patron of San VitaleHalo indicates saintliness, a semidivinity as head of church and stateJustinian and Theodora are actively participating in the Mass- their position over the altar enhances this allusion
24 Slight displacement of absolute symmetry with Theodora- she plays a secondary role to her husband. Richly robed empress and ladies at courtShe stands in an architectural framework, holding a chalice for the mass, and is about to go behind the curtainFigures are flattened and weightless, barely a hint of a body can be detected beneath the draperyThree Magi, who bring gifts to the baby Jesus, are depicted on the hem of her dress. This reference draws parallels between Theodora and the Magi
30 Monastery Churches, tenth to eleventh centuries, Hosios Loukas, Greece Exterior shows decorative placement of stonework and soft interplay of horizontal and vertical elementsLarge windows areas punctuated by smaller holes, creating a sense of mystery in the interiorInterior wall spaces dissolve into delicate archesOctagonal squinches support dome surrounded by windowsChurch has a light interior filled with sparkling mosaicsGood examples of the Middle Byzantine tradition
31 Monastery Churches, tenth to eleventh centuries, Hosios Loukas, Greece Extensive use of variously colored marbles on the lower floors and mosaics or frescoes in the elevated portions of the buildings.Domes tend to be low and have windows around the baseMiddle and late buildings have a strong vertical emphasis. Domes were set on elevated drums.Greek orthodox tradition dictates important parts of the mass take place behind a curtain or screen composed of icons called an iconostasis.
37 Saint Mark’s Cathedral 1063 c.e., Venice Italy Five domes placed in a cross patternWindows at base of dome illuminate brilliant mosaics that cover every wall space above the first floorFigures are weightless in a field of gold mosaicsProminent iconostasis separates apse from nave
38 Saint Mark’s Cathedral Compartmentalized space of Middle Byzantine architecture, more open and spacious Hagia SophiaContains relics of Saint Mark, the evangelist
44 Saint Basil’s Cathedral by Barma and Postnik, 1555-1561 c. e Saint Basil’s Cathedral by Barma and Postnik, c.e., Moscow, RussiaCommissioned by Ivan the TerribleTall, slender pyramid-like central tower crowned by small, onion-shaped domeCentral spire surrounded by eight smaller domes of various sizes with fanciful decorative surfacesLow, flat, rounded arches intermix with triangular forms and tall slender window-like shallow spaces
46 David Composing the Psalms from the Paris Psalter, c. 950-970 c. e David Composing the Psalms from the Paris Psalter, c c. e., tempera on vellumPsalter, book of Psalms from the Old TestamentFigures aned landscape based on classlical modelsBrilliant and balanced colorDynamic contrast between muscular bodies and stiff draperies
47 David Composing the Psalms David is playing the harp by Melody (upper body is classical in inspiration, lower body is mideval)Personification of Echo (?) behind a loving cup given as a prize for best singer.Muscular, classically inspired figure symbolizing Mountains of Bethlehem in lower right.Curves dominate composition: left foot of Melody to mountain god, circle around David and Melody.Jewel like border frames scene.
49 Pantocrater, 1180-1190 mosaic, Cathedral, Monreale Sicily Mosaics arranged in an elaborate hierarchy: Jesus at top.Solidity of figure: monumental scaleSternness, severeness, awesome grandeurJesus at the top of a strict hierarchical program of imagesBlessing gesture in his right hand, left hand holds a bible inscribed in Latin and GreekImage suggests combination of Jesus Christ and God the Father.Pointed arches suggest the beginning of the Gothic styleLargest Byzantine mosaic cycle extant, over one acre of gold mosaic: dazzling recreation of heavenly realm on earth.
50 Virgin (Theotokos) and Child between saints Theodore and Gorge, icon, sixth or early seventh century. Encaustic on wood, Monastery of Saint Catherine, Mount Sinai, Egypt
51 Icons and IconoclasmIcons used for private worship. Very few survive. The best that have survived from Mount Sinai Saint Catherine’s monastery.Continuing tradition of panel painting from Rome. But using traditional Byzantine style on the bodies.Eighth century iconoclasm stopped production and destroyed existing icons. Works from are almost completely lost. Work began again in 843 when iconoclasm was repealed and images were reinstated.Iconoclasm of the Arabs destroyed many Byzantine icons in the seventh century
53 Andrei Rublev, Old Testament Trinity, c Andrei Rublev, Old Testament Trinity, c. 1410, tempera on wood, Tretyakov Gallery, MoscowByzantine affinity of repeating forms from older artHeads of angels nearly identicalPoses are mirror imagesLuminous appeal of colorsDeep color harmonies of draperiesExtensive use of goldNearly spaceless backgroundThree Old Testament angels who appear to Abraham and Sarah in Genesis: parallel relationship to the Christian Trinity
54 Saint Michael the Archangel, early 6th century, ivory, British Museum,London
55 Largest extant Byzantine ivory panel modeled Saint Michael on a classical Winged victory From a hinged diptych in Early Christian Tradition.Saint Michael the patron saint of Hagia Sophia.Image prototype has been adapted form pagan to Christian and given new meanings.Image made to float rather than be rooted to the ground. Classical Byzantine concern for symbols rather than reality. Spatial ambiguity.Imperial imagery with the orb and scepter.
56 Saint Michael the Archangel, early 6th century, ivory, British Museum, London One leaf of an ivory DiptychRoman coiffure, Classical drapery, facial typeSubtle relief foldsDelicately detailed classical architectureImperial imagery in the orb and the scepterSaint Michael hovers in front of the arch, wings beforeColumnsSpatial ambiguity: feet placed on steps behind columnsBody articulated beneath drapery
59 Harbaville Triptych, c.950, ivory, Louvre, Paris Individualized headsFrontality broken up by slight turns of bodySharp crisp linesVery hieratic compositionAngels appear in medallionsJewel-like delicacy of carvingMany have their hands covered, a symbol of respect in Byzantine artMedieval interest in labeling names of figures in works of artFigures are the same size, many dressed alike and symmetrically arranged.
61 Multiple choice questions All of the following are architectural innovations at the Hagia Sophia EXCEPT:A circle of windows appears at the base of the domePendentives are used to support the domeThe ground plan is a mix of the axial and centrally planned churchFrescoes cover the wall spaces
62 2. Fears of idolatry caused the Byzantines to Stop the production of iconsInvade the surrounding countries they considered heathenDecorate the interior of their churches with abstract symbolsTurn to ivory as a principal source of carving
63 3. After the fall of the Byzantine Empire, artistic production continued in FranceEgyptRussiaEngland
64 4. An iconostasis was used to Allow artists to paint icons in placeSeparate the apse from the transept and the nave of a churchOffer support for a squinchAllow light into a church
65 5. Characteristically, icons Were handled and kissed by the faithfulWere used by the Byzantine emperor to deliver messagesHad images of the emperor or members of his court on themSymbolized Byzantium’s link to its classical past
66 6. This Byzantine panel shows the influence of classical art in its Spatial placement of the angel on the steps and in the archModeling of the bodyChristian symbolismRelationship of the figure to the architectural setting
67 7. This Byzantine panel is made of terra-cottaMarbleLimestoneivory
68 8. Byzantine churches have artistic programs that feature Jesus as the central figure in the role of Panatocrator, meaning he is theSaviorSon of GodRuler of the worldUnifier of all
69 9. The Hagia Sophia was built under the patronage of Emperor TrajanEmperor Justinian and Empress TheodoraEmperor Basil IConstantine the Great
70 10. The subject of this painting draws a parallel between The Bible and Greek mythologyHomer’s The Iliad and The OdyessyEarly and Late Byzantine artD. The Hebrew and Christian scriptures
71 Short essay, 10 minutesIdentify the central figure in this image. What pictorial and stylistic devices are used to communicate this person’s majesty and importance?