Gotic Cathedrals

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categorie: Istorie

nota: 9.99

nivel: Liceu

Italian Renaissance writers originally used the word gothic as a derogatory term for all architects and artists in the middle ages, which were compared to the works of the barbarian Goths. Although now the Gothic Age is considered Europe's internationally acclaimed, it began as a regional phenomenon (Kleiner 488). The gothic style was first recognized in northern France around 1140 A.D., during [...]
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Italian Renaissance writers originally used the word gothic as a derogatory term for all architects and artists in the middle ages, which were compared to the works of the barbarian Goths. Although now the Gothic Age is considered Europe's internationally acclaimed, it began as a regional phenomenon (Kleiner 488). The gothic style was first recognized in northern France around 1140 A.D., during the last major medieval period, immediately following the Romanesque period.

Gothic art would dominate European architectural development for nearly four hundred years (Gothic Dreams 1). These advances that were made in the cathedrals were regarded not as distortions of the classical style, but as images of the City of God, the Heavenly Jerusalem, which they had built on earth. While bishops erected great new cathedrals reaching to the skies. The structural miracle was achieved as the result of man's ceaseless striving to build vertically (Norwich 115).

"The high vault, functionally so unnecessary, was mainly responsible for the cathedral taking the particular form that they do," (Norwich 115). A new spirit had been leashed: less cloistered and introspective, more confident and optimistic. These churches
Were symbols of civic pride, and for the first time since the very beginning of Christian art, an appreciation of nature. The growth of towns particularly in France, as they became more prosperous, wanted their own churches, churches that were different from the abbeys.

In June of 1144, King Louis VII of France and Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, along with five archbishops, converged upon the Benedictine abbey-church of Saint-Denis. Because this church was considered a relic, the sculptured portals that were added had to conform to the dimensions of the already existing church. Saint Denis is the key monument of early gothic art and architecture. The restored large central rose window (circular stained-glass window) became standard in French-Gothic architecture.

Gothic sculpture made its first appearance at Saint Denis. Sculptors were brought in by Abbot Suger to help carry on the rich heritage of Romanesque Burgundy. Statues of kings, queens, and profits were attached to columns, which screened the jambs of all 3 doorways (Kleiner 490). Proclaiming the majesty and power of Christ, these sculptures was destroyed from the western facade during the French Revolution. During the reign of Napoleon III, the French Gothic structures were threatened with extermination by Imperial order. This was achieved effectively in Paris, the very birthplace of Gothic spirit (Gothic Dreams 2).
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