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15th Century Painting

This posting picks at least three paintings. Each painting will represent a perspective (mathematical or atmospheric). Works created from 1420-1520.
Include the following information:

?Summary of the perspective. Look on the Internet. What do other authors say about these perspectives? Find at least one outside source for each type.

?Description of the perspective and how the painting best represents it (e.g. depth of the scenery, distance of objects, size of people compared to geography, etc.).

?In your opinion, does the painting have a three-dimensional quality? If so, what gives the painting 3-D effects?

Solution Preview

As you analyze three paintings, please allow my notes (and research as you requested) to help:

First, Masaccio's "Holy Trinity" is a wonderful piece. In terms of perspective, it shows linear perspective. Research suggests that its perspective shows that "there should be a single vanishing point to which all parallel lines in a plane, other than the plane of the canvas, converge. Also important was his understanding of scale, and he correctly computed the relation between the actual length of an object and its length in the picture depending on its distance behind the plane of the canvas" (http://www-groups.dcs.st-and.ac.uk/~history/HistTopics/Art.html). Because of this piece's mathematical principles, it offers a sense of precision and perfection. I like its sense of balance.

As you describe it, you might note that it does not depict God as this super being. Instead, research shows that Masaccio "made the bold move to ...

Solution Summary

This posting explores perspective in 15th century painting.

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