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Art History Final Exam

Terms in this set (79)

REALISM. Historical Background and Style
Artistic movement aimed at DEPICTING CONTEMPORARY LIFE IN A DIRECT, NON-IDEALIZED, AND UNDISTORTED MANNER that originated in 19th-century France
GUSTAVE COURBET was the leading proponent of Realism; Courbet believed that artists should find their subjects in their own time and place, and his large-scale paintings focus on and even glorify poor working people
HONORÉ DAUMIER produced lithographs for the liberal French newspaper called Caricature, and his political satire highlighted the condition of the working classes
EDOUARD MANET used rough brush strokes to depict working class women and prostitutes; his untraditional style (where the brush-strokes emphasized the flatness or two-dimensionality of the canvas) and his unorthodox subjects shocked the public and paved the way for modern abstract art
Manet's work and technique are representative of Realism even as they led into Impressionism
American Realists (Winslow Homer, Thomas Eakins, John Singer Sargent): Like their French counterparts, the American Realists chose as their SUBJECTS WORKING CLASS AND POOR PEOPLE AND THEIR LIVES
The Pre-Raphaelites were artists who rejected the concerns of the Realists to depict in as accurate a manner as possible their own times; the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood was formed in 1848 by a group of artists (John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rosetti), who rejected the "ugliness" of their rapidly industrializing world and chose to represent literary, historical, and fanciful subjects in an aesthetically pleasant and highly illusionistic manner
Interest and belief in the uniqueness and special nature of ONE'S OWN TIME (not looking to classical or renaissance)
Call for artists to BE OF THEIR OWN TIME
Influenced by theories of scientific Positivism (August Comte): the way to scientific knowledge was in OBSERVABLE FACTS
In art this meant a REJECTION OF NEO-CLASSICISM, ROMANTICISM, AND RELIGIOUS PAINTING because one should only paint what one can SEE and VERIFY
Influenced by the desire to help common, less educated people, exploited by capitalism
Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx - published in 1848
Bohemian life-styles of artists
Contemporary urban idle observer - FLÂNEUR
Mid-1880s: Artists begin to DOUBT THE VALIDITY OF IMPRESSIONISM and its aim to capture the fleeting moment - RETURN TO TRADITION
Felt PARADOX: science vs. utopian idealism; popular culture vs. classical tradition; politically engaged vs. formally pure
Not only Pissarro and Seurat - works by Monet, Degas, and Renoir all began to change in the 1880s
Last Impressionist Exhibition in 1886 - replaced by the Society of Independent Artists, which organized their own non-juried salon called the Salon des Independents in 1884
World becomes more connected due to advances in communication and transportation
By 1886, Impressionists were being taken seriously as artists, and artists started addressing concerns beyond the effects of light and climate
The term "Post-Impressionism" refers to a diverse range of artists who, ca. 1886, STARTED ADDRESSING THE EXPRESSIVE QUALITIES OF LINE, PATTERN, FORM, AND COLOR
Unlike the Impressionists, the Post-Impressionists rejected a collective way of seeing and creating art, each Post-Impressionist artist's style is quite unique
Artists like Vincent van Gogh and Paul Gauguin explored the expressive capabilities of formal elements
Van Gogh used heavy, thick brush-strokes and expressive line and color to convey emotions
Gauguin was influenced by Japanese prints and used solid lines to delineate often abstract expanses of color and create images that rejected traditional notions of perspective and emphasized flattened and block-like forms; he moved to Tahiti, where his paintings exemplified Primitivism (images, often highly idealized, depicting what is ostensibly a natural world in which humans live in a primordial harmony with nature)
Artists like Georges Seurat and Paul Cézanne were more interested in an analytical approach to painting, and they explored the creation of images in relation to what the mind and the eye registered
Seurat used a process called pointillism, in which he meticulously applied spots of pure color to create naturalistic images when seen from a distance
Cézanne used lines, planes, and colors in his compositions, but in a manner different from the one used by Gauguin (Cézanne compositions sought to capture formal elements in an analytic manner in which examined the interrelationships of forms and colors as understood by the mind; he understood, for instance, that cool colors tend to recede into depth while warm ones tend to project forward, and he used an arrangement of forms according to these principles to convey depth in his paintings)
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND AND STYLE
Post-WWII, i.e. 1945 onwards, America sees renewed prosperity and becomes the leading world power in technology and in art
Center of the art world shifts from Paris to New York

Rise of ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONISM in the 1940s
AMERICAN ARTISTIC MOVEMENT
REJECTION OF ILLUSIONISM
2 MAIN TYPES of Abstract Expressionism
ACTION PAINTING OR GESTURAL PAINTING (form conveys physical involvement of artist in creation of the artwork)
COLOR-FIELD PAINTING OR CHROMATIC ABSTRACTION

EXISTENTIALISM: philosophy related to the devastation caused by WWII, wherein faith in science, logic, and related progress was eschewed in favor of a worldview emphasizing the NEGATIVE ASPECTS OF HUMAN EXISTENCE: the fear of death; the feeling of alienation from society, people, and nature; the absurdity of life; and the lack of an absolute moral compass differentiating right from wrong
1950s and 1960s: Rejection of Abstract Expressionism through Post-Painterly Abstraction
rejection of the TEXTURED SURFACES AND ENERGETIC DYNAMISM CHARACTERISTIC OF ABSTRACT EXPRESSIONISM
In some cases, also a rejection of non-representational subject matter (example: Pop Art)

American economic prosperity was concentrated in specific demographic groups: initially, it was almost exclusively white males who were socio-economically powerful in the mainstream; eventually, the Civil Rights Movement and Feminism led to a shift in this uneven distribution, and these changes are reflected in the art produced during this period
New kinds of movements and mediums: Combines, Performance Art/Happenings, Earthworks, Conceptual Art, Minimalist Art, Mail Art, Video Art

Important events
1955-68: Civil Rights Movement
1966: Jewish Museum, New York, mounts Primary Structures, first exhibition of Minimal Art
1969: Moon landing
1970: MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) presents Information, first exhibition of Conceptual Art
1970s: Rise of feminism and movements like Black Power, Gay Pride, and the establishment of Greenpeace are a catalyst for new concerns/subjects in art

Coincided with historical hegemony in the US
Time of huge economic and population growth in US
Became intertwined with politics-after WWII to Cold War
Art became a weapon in this war
EARLY NORTHERN REN. Figure 14.8
Alterpiece
Idea of repping SACRED FIGURES IN THE NATURAL WORLD-naturalistic revolution
Central panel-Annunciation-frequently depicted in earlier Christian art
Usually set in a sacred place but this is in a house-open shutters, fireplace, cushioned bench
Real figures w/ mass and weight
Drapery w/ deep folds
Mary's red dress draws attention to her
Details, some symbolic-white lilies, dead candle-don't need light in presence of deity/christ, book
Baby coming in through window-Jesus
Good indication of new middle class buying art
Naturalism-details make object concrete-shape, size, color, texture. Different light-soft and gradient, more direct and with shadows
Left: Not a court painting but still catered to middle class patrons-
depicted on left kneeling outside chamber-probs less traditional because it is a more private work
WHOLE THING FROZEN MOMENT-SOMETHING IMPORTANT IS ABOUT TO HAPPEN

Robert Campin's "Merode Altarpiece" carries some important attributes of Early Northern Renaissance
Attention to details and material culture
OIL PAINTING AND LUMINOUS COLORS-smooth transitions from light to dark(b/c oil dries slower) more thorough illusion of reality, muted tonality unifies all 3 panels
Translucent layers of paint - GLAZING

COMPARE CAMPIN'S SUBSTANTIAL BODIES IN EARTHLY SETTING FOR WITNESS OF DONORS TO SIMONE MARTINI'S SLIM, WEIGHTLESS FIGURES AGAINST ETERNAL BACKGROUND
Right panel-Joseph the carpenter at work
Carefully chosen details, yet puzzling-not really sure whats happening

Many not sure why Campin rendered the world/scene w/ such fidelity
DUTCH/NETHERLANDS BAROQUE

Baroque characteristics:
Emotional exuberance
Monumental grandeur
Sensational and up-lifting
Immediacy, impact
Rich, intense decoration
Illogical and paradoxical
Allegorical and mysterious
Style connected to absolute monarchy, absolutism
Populist: seeking to interest ordinary, uneducated people
Full of dynamic movement, not static and not stable
Coincidence of oppositions: emotions and intellect, color and line, reason and intuition, progress and classicism


Rem style: works generally DARKER, LESS CHEERFUL THAN RUBENS AND VAN DYKE. Also features fancy clothing.
GLAZING. CARAVAGGESQUE INFLUENCE. MORE PSYCHOLOGICAL DEPICTIONS. Probs lots of IMPASTO. Lots of LANDSCAPES too
most important Dutch Baroque artist
EMOTIONS
SUBTLE GRADATIONS OF LIGHT AND SHADE

CONTENT: group portrait, shows assembly of military company,
they all contributed $ to commision it but were not painted equally
Focus on captain in center foreground, who extends hand towards us-it is FORESHORTENED
other figures in shadow

the small, angelic creature is quite commanding for her size-she stands out as being one of the few figures not in shadow, she is an enigmatic figure that is probably a sort of PERSONIFICATION OF THE COMPANY-they chicken she holds is probs part of their emblem

STYLE: filled with DYNAMIC MOVEMENT AND LIGHTING, captures excitement of the moment and provides unique sense of DRAMA,
figures are animated with activities-atypical of baroque netherlands group portraits of the time
figures FANCIFULLY DRESSED, typical of Baroque