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Chapter 8 Byzantine Art

by: Lisa Render

Chapter 8 Byzantine Art ART 2050-001

Lisa Render
GPA 3.578

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Survey of Western Art History I: Chapter 8 Notes
Survey of Western Art History 1
Dr. Amy Morris
Class Notes
Art, history
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This 26 page Class Notes was uploaded by Lisa Render on Wednesday October 5, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to ART 2050-001 at University of Nebraska at Omaha taught by Dr. Amy Morris in Spring 2015. Since its upload, it has received 3 views. For similar materials see Survey of Western Art History 1 in Art History at University of Nebraska at Omaha.


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Date Created: 10/05/16
8 Byzantine Art Monday, November 9, 2015 8:20 AM Map Roman empire is shrinking Invaded by Germanic tribes Visigoths sacked Rome Constantinople took over Byzantium Byzantine Period • Early Byzantine (fifth century to 726) ○ Starts with the reign of Justinian ○ 726 iconoclasm -- destruction of art • Middle Byzantine (843-1204) ○ Starts with an empress who brings art back  Images are made legal again ○ Ends with the crusades • Late Byzantine (1261-1453) ○ 1261 Byzantine emperor takes the thrown  From the Latin king that was put there during the crusades ○ 1453 Turks take Constantinople ○ Emperor Justinian Mosaic • His reign is the golden age of Byzantine art • His uncle was an emperor • Belisarius helped him win back the land • Justinian runs into sometrouble politically ○ They used to have races in the hippodrome  Circus  Supporters of certain games were less about the game but more politics ○ A riot broke out and destroyeda lot of Constantinople  Nike Revolt ○ Justinian was in fear of his life  Escaped • Theodora ○ Justinian's wife  Would've been illegal for him to marry her  His uncle passed a law and allowed Justinian to marry Theodora ○ Was a circus performer(actual circus)  Doubled as a prostitute ○ She would rather die an empress than escape and be a nobody  "purple would be a great shroud color" ○ So Justinian fought against them • They invited all the enemies back for a dinner • They invited all the enemies back for a dinner ○ Murdered them all Anthemius of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus, Church of Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, 532-537 • Dedicated to Holy Wisdom ○ Aspect of god or Christ • "architects" weren't a thing They hired mathematiciansand master craftsman ○ They hired mathematiciansand master craftsman • Mosaic dome ○ Would have had a lot of original mosaicsof religious art ○ Turned into a mosque ○ Turned into a state monument • Unique ground plan ○ Merges both the central plan and longitudinal plan ○ Has a soaring dome but also elongated Hagia Sophia vs. The Pantheon Construction methods • No oculus • Windows are at the base of the dome • Windows are at the base of the dome ○ If they would've done that on the pantheon it would've collapsed ○ "Riding on a halo of light" • Pendentives ○ "dome on pendentives" ○ They put the dome on a square base  Shave off the edges ○ Carries the weight down ○ Still can have wide open arches Ravenna • Seat of imperial power because of the sacking of Rome • Justinian makes it powerful again San Vitale, Ravenna, dedicated 547 • Justinian helps complete this church • St. Vitalus ○ Italian = San Vitale • Dome ○ Really popular in the Byzantine empire • More intricate and complicatedspaces • A lot of color and patterns • Ornate • Themes of offering ○ Old testamentoffering of blood ○ New testamentoffering of bread ○ Christ Enthroned, Flanked by Angels, St. Vitalis, and Bishop Ecclesius, San Vitale • Jesus offering crown of martyrdom • Bishop Ecclesius offering church ○ He built the church Emperor Justinian and his Attendants • In between church and state Empress Theodora and her Attendants • They never set foot in this church • Offering bowl and chalice • Byzantine court known for its wealth Byzantine art • Flat • Frontal • Linear ○ Straight pleated clothes ○ No emphasis on the body • No shading • Background ○ Flat but gold • Proportions ○ All the same ○ Elongated and elegant • Simplified Archangel Micheal, early 6th century • Different styles coexisting at the same time ○ Late-antique/romanstyle ○ Iconic flat style • Byzantine emperorsstill think of themselvesas Roman emperors ○ Classical heritage • This ivory follows a more classic style ○ Arm uplifted ○ Roman architecture as background ○ Curly hair framing face ○ Facial features  Emotion ○ Drapery folds ○ Natural proportionsof the body ○ Spacial issues with the feet though  Wings are outside the columns  Feet cover 3 steps  Are they in the niche or not?  Are they in the niche or not? • Ivory diptych ○ Holes drilled in the side ○ 2 panels • Greek inscription on the top ○ Greek becomes the language of the Byzantine empire Rebecca at the Well, Vienna Genesis, Early 6th century • Book production is significant • Format for writing is changing ○ Used to use scrolls  Rolled up ○ Now they were making codex  Square format  Sewn and bound together on one side  "books" ○ Expensive  Written on animal skin or velum  ~70 sheep or goats to make a book  They would dye the skin purple  They would dye the skin purple □ Royal color  Written in silver leaf  No printing press □ Everything is hand written □ Takes years to produce these books  Illustration takes a long time too ○ Bibles  They would illustrate and publish them one book at a time Virgin and Child with Saints and Angels, Second half of 6th century • Military saints • Icon ○ "image" in Greek ○ Stylistic ○ Usually painted on panels ○ Mosaic is common ○ Usually portrayed holy figures  Jesus  Mary  Saints  People would pray to these  People would pray to these ○ Direct focus on figures  No background ○ Elongated figures ○ Frontal staring  Wide eyes ○ Questionable use of images  Miraculous powers  Protection  Praying to them • Then Leo III issues a ban on images ○ Forbidden to be produced ○ All of them are destroyed ○ About a handful survive ○ Iconoclasm  "image-breaking" or "image-destroying" ○ Reasoning being that the use of images goes against the second commandment ○ Iconophiles  "lover of images"  Image supporters  Not worshiping the image itself, worshiping the person who it is of □ Veneration of praise  Helps explain to the illiterate ○ Leo III was trying to just piss people off  Turning attention away from something else  Maybe he didn’t even have a problem with icons  The empire had shrunk drastically during his reign  May have been influenced by Islamic practices □ They don’t worship icons  Monasterieshad power □ Monasterieshad icons Crucifixion and Iconoclasts,Chludov Psalter, mid-9th century • Empress reinstates images ○ Art flourishes again ○ 16 foot mosaic of the virgin and child in Hagia Sophia • Torturers ○ Torturing Christ ○ Torturing an icon of Christ ○ Making a statement MonasteryChurches at Hosios Loukas, Greece, Katholikon (left) early 11th century; Theotokos(right) late 10th century • St. Luke • Same monasterybut 2 churches DomedSpace and Apse, Katholikon, Monasteryof Hosios Loukas, Early 11th • Architecture ○ Beautiful brick and stone  Outlines in different colors  Cloisonné □ Outlining in different colors □ Used in jewelry □ Kind of like stained glass windows outlined in lead ○ Small compact central plan churches  Has a dome ○ Hagia Sophia introduced the complexity of space  Churches continue this practice ○ Everything goes up to the dome  Hierarchy of subject  Most important art goes in the center of the dome □ Usually Christ Christ Pantakrator,Dome, Church of the Dormition,Daphni, Greece • Pantakrator ○ Stern looking but hand blessing the viewer Crucifixion, Church of the Dormition,Daphni, Greece, late 11th century • Subtle adding of more emotionand meaning • Skull at the foot of Christ ○ Christ was crucified on Golgotha ○ Skull is Adam ○ Christ is the new Adam • Water and blood coming out of Christ's side ○ Blood = wine ○ Water = baptism ○ Salvation • Crucifixion in an illustrated gospel • Different aspects illustrated • Right side is morenarrative • Left side is morestripped down to the bare essentials • San Marco/St.Marks • Patron saint of Venice • Lion of St. Mark • Relics of St. Mark are displayed here Interior and Plan of the Cathedral of St. Mark, Venice, begun 1063 • Barrel vaults • Mosaics David the Psalmist,Paris Psalter, second Half of 10th century • Macedonian Renaissance ○ Dynasty of emperors ○ Rebirth or revival of classical art ○ Macedonian emperors  866-1056  1 family in power  Great supports of art and intellectual endeavors ○ Basil the first • Paris Psalter ○ Illustrates the book of psalms ○ Believed that David wrote the book of psalms ○ Style  Entire space is used  Personifications  Background  Greek look  Drapery follows the body  Animals  Antique representations  Antique representations • Both middle Byzantine Virgin of Vladimir, 11th-12thcentury • Icons were popular in this period • Ideas that it protected the city • Commonsubject of icons was the Virgin and child ○ Cheeks pressed together ○ "virgin of compassion" Funerary Chapel (Parekklesion),Monasteryof Christ in Chora, Constantinople, c. 1310-1321 • 4th crusades sacks Constantinople is 1204 ○ First latin emperor put into place is Baldwin the 1st • 1261 a Byzantine emperor overthrowsthe Latin one ○ Restoresthe Byzantine empire • Theodore Metochitis ○ Poet, writer, scholar ○ Increasingly given administrativeduties ○ To the point he was second only to the emperor ○ Added to a church Anastasis, Monasteryof Christ in Chora, Constantinople, c. 1310-1321 • Anastasis ○ Jesus breaks the gates of hell ○ Pulls up Adam and Eve out of their coffins


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