Term Paper: Comparing Arts of Baroque Rococo Neoclassical and Romantic Era

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¶ … Baroque, Rococo, Neoclassical and Romantic Art

Generally speaking, the term "Baroque" is used in current art history studies as a blanket designation for the art created from about 1600 to 1750, but in recent years, art scholars and critics have come to realize that "Baroque is a classification useful in isolating the tendencies and products of stylistic change; thus, traits which are part of the styles of the 17th and 18th centuries are now designated as Baroque." 1 for the most part, the art created during the Baroque Period was spacious and dynamic, brilliant and colorful, theatrical and passionate, sensual and ecstatic, opulent and extravagant, versatile and virtuoso, 2 but as the 18th century began, the Baroque style became more mellow and refined. This was the century of the rise to great power of the maritime British Empire and the spread of new ideas directed at the Church and the State, democratic ideas related to freedom and the equality of all men. Many enlightened monarchs cultivated outspoken men like Voltaire, and reason and common sense were seen as viable alternatives to the ills facing human society. In essence, the 18th century art world and all of Europe "was waiting breathlessly for the tremendous revolutions to come." 3

With this new age cultivated by European monarchies in France, Italy, Spain and Great Britain, came what is known as the Rococo style of art which refers to small stones and sea shells used to decorate the interiors of grottoes and serves as the principle motifs for Rococo ornamentation. Thus, the Rococo style is mainly an interior style related to small works of art, furniture, utensils and other household accessories and all kinds of objects, both useful and decorative, exquisitely wrought in the characteristically delicate and undulating Rococo line. 4 a typical Rococo room can be found in the Salon de la Princesse at the Hotel de Soubise in Paris, decorated by Germain Boffrand (1667 to 1754). With painting, a prime example is Cupid a Captive by Francois Boucher, painted in 1754, which shows "a pyramidal scheme of infant and female flesh, set off against a cool, leafy background" with the figure's nakedness both hidden and revealed by fluttering draperies. With this painting, Boucher used all of the Baroque devices, being "the dynamic play of criss-crossing diagonals, curvilinear forms and slanting recessions." 5

By the middle of the 18th century, the rediscovery of ancient Greek art and architecture turned the artistic tastes of Europe in a brand-new direction which began the style and period known as Neoclassical. Within this period's admiration for the art of Greece, a similar admiration came about for the art of ancient Rome via the excavations of the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum in the 1730's and 1740's. Several excellent examples of this new style include the portico of the Church of Ste. Genevieve, now known as the Pantheon, in Paris, designed by Jacques… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Comparing Arts of Baroque Rococo Neoclassical and Romantic Era.  (2008, May 10).  Retrieved August 23, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/comparing-arts-baroque-rococo-neoclassical/37851

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"Comparing Arts of Baroque Rococo Neoclassical and Romantic Era."  Essaytown.com.  May 10, 2008.  Accessed August 23, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/comparing-arts-baroque-rococo-neoclassical/37851.