The style of European art and architecture from around 1150 to 1500 is known as ‘Gothic’. Coined in the succeeding period, the Renaissance, this term was pejorative; the Italians called architecture north of the Alps gotico, after the Goths, the ‘barbarian’ ancestors of the northern Europeans. The style originated in and around Paris, where architectural innovations made it possible to build increasingly higher churches. Rib vaulting and flying buttresses allowed for open walls punctuated by arched windows with elaborate ‘tracery’ and stained glass. Pointed ‘pinnacles’ made the narrow towers seem taller. Sculpture broke free from the architecture; figures of humans and animals, and vegetation took on a more natural appearance. Gothic buildings literally reached to the sky and rose high above the plain Romanesque structures. Gothic motifs, such as pointed arches and quatrefoils, were introduced into other artistic disciplines: painting, manuscript illumination, gold and silversmith work, and cabinetry. The Gothic style spread from France throughout all of Europe.

Geschenk uit de hemel

Geschenk uit de hemel

02:12 min



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