ART 185 notes 11-30-2009 6th century Byzantine art is very insubstantial?the idea is to make things flat; ethereal. Know apse mosaic as the most perfect example of an apse mosaic surviving from the Byzantine period. Early Christian Architecture During the age of Constantine (the first roman emperor to reclaim Christian) longitudinal church type and central plan church type (used as a baptistery) Church of Hagia Sophia: The single greatest Byzantine church in the east, in Constantinople: A synthesis of the two early Christian building types?square, but within the square they have extended the dome toward the entrance and alter to create a longitudinal space within a central plan structure. Interior: the dome is huge. Pendentive?an architectural device used to make a transition from a square to a circle. The dome is only supported at its corners, the pendentive. Think of the pendentive as a giant sphere. The giant sphere ist he diagonal of the square. Imagine it also as an orange. You slice the orange in half, and slice off the four sides, and what?s left of the orange rind are these little triangles?that?s the pendentive?the triangular segments. Example of pendentive: 526 540 547 --remember those years, sorry but he?s going very fast and I didn?t catch it all here ( Church of San Vitali: Presbyterium?the altar area Apse is our focus, contains the Mosaic of Emperor Justinian in the church of San Vitale in Ravenna: Justinian is shown giving a gift to the church at the time of its dedication. To his left is one high official, and to his right are bodyguards. They had to have blonde hair and blue eyes. Maximianus is labeled and there is an archbishop. Everything is done to put Justinian in preeminence. Justininan is the forward figure in a triangular wedge moving forward. When you get to the bottom of the image, the feet of the clergy are lower. This is how the artist solved the problem of clergy v. Justinian ?hierarchy? in representation. On the other side is Theodora: There are body guards on her sides, and one person has their hand on a curtain showing a fountain. Empress is presenting her gift in the entrance hall, because she was not allowed further than that, which is why that guy has to open a curtain apparently. Theodora was the most loved prostitute of the area, and Theodora liked her the most, so he married her. She was once a circus clown. She wore a greased-up g-string covered in bird seed and had her pet goose pick off the seeds while she danced. Apparently that was considered really hot. What a slut! Notice both emperor and empress are shown with halos?make note of this. The Apse mosaic: 2 angels flanking jesus, and one is pointing to bishop eclasias who started the church. All are standing in paradise, where all plants are watered by 4 rivers. The age of migrations New people moving slowly from asia into Europe, and they settle into the territories that rome abandones. The Visigoths go to spain. The Goths and the francs occupy france and germany. In the north (Britain and Scandinavia) the Viking people occupied. These people had no city knowledge whatsoever?lived in rural areas, so did not know how to maintain a city, but they still made art. Their focus was not on the public monument or portraits, but they were interested in portable objects, something that can be carried with a person. There were 2 basic types: Polychrome?a style of decoration. An example of this is a Visigoth crown, with many bright colored stones, etc. this is not the same one he showed but you get the idea: Serpentine decoration? also called the animal interlace style. A mystical quality, twists and turns, which was popular with the people of England. Also the style of celtic Ireland. The arts of early Ireland: Hiberno?refers to ancient Ireland Saxon?england Illuminated?hand-painted books, with lots of gold leaf?done on vellum?the tanned skin of veal, eww. The book of durrow: first example of early Christian art not made in the Christian world. Represent the application of the animal interlace style to the decoration of text. The only people who could read and write were the clergy. Basically only read the word of god.
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