Art And Architecture Of 12Th Century Italy Term Paper

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The Art and architecture of the Middle Ages was one of diversity and yet it focused around one aspect of life. Whether it was the creation of Romanesque buildings, or the carved statues decorating them there was one simple theme, religion. Two main styles of art and architecture reigned supreme during this time. Gothic and Romanesque techniques came from the same family of Roman design. Of this period the most important art that arose was architecture because if founded a completely new type of construction.

During the era in which Fibonacci lived, Italy was in a Romanesque period. It made use of several architectural characteristics such as the rounded arch and the barrel vault. An example of this being the Cathedral of Pisa where the marble columns are all crowned with capitals of old Roman form. For 600 years after the fall of Rome the architecture of the Roman Empire ceased, and was mainly brought back around the time of the middle ages of embellishment of churches. At this time, Pisa was the crossroads of Mediterranean culture. The diversity of styles during the Romanesque period was great. Central Italy continued the tradition of Early Christian basilicas by using the classical decorative elements. The church of San Clemente is a famous basilica in Rome with these characteristics. The famous leaning tower of Pisa was being built during Fibonacci?s age around 1173 and continued for 200 more years. The bell tower is unique of its kind because of its independent location from a church. As for the leaning of this most celebrated tower, some believe it was in the original plans to make it leaning, but it is not true. It began to lean as the construction progessed.

From Romanesque style, Gothic techniques arose in the twelfth century. Architecture was the most important and original art form during the Gothic period. France gave birth to the famous Notre Dame with its vaulted ceilings and gargoyle statues decorating the outer walls. This style retained the sheltering walls, deep arcades, and small windows of Romanesque method.

Painting and sculpting changed dramatically around this period as well. The body came to life with folds and wrinkles in the clothes as well as highlights in converging lines and patterns. Aesthetic symmetry also played an important role creating pictures pleasing to the eye. The era of Gothic painting spanned a 200-year phase starting in Italy and spreading to the rest of Europe.

Italy contributed greatly to the rise of these various styles of art in Europe undoubtedly progressing the upcoming Renaissance. It is most probable that Fibonacci was in a good position in Pisa for his discovery to take place.

Word Count: 443

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