Andrea Mantegna-Late Gothic & Early Renaissance (Blogpost Week 1)

Andrea Mantegna was an Italian artist of the early renaissance with a background in Roman archaeology. He not only had a successful painting career but also had a notable career as a engraver (although he never dated any of these works).

His background in sculpture is clearly reflected in his paintings, especially his later works.
His artwork is noted to be on the stiffer,more rigid side, as he preferred he works of ancient artists to nature. The approach he maintained towards sculptor. Mantegna’s works often featured a barren dull landscape, and stiff, relatively with a bony, stiff figure.

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His paintings “St. Sebastian” from 1480 and “Christ and the Suffering Redeemer” are a good example of this.

As per the time, Mantegna Experimented with the new discover of perspective. He especially seemed to favour the then new trend of lowering the horizon. This created a very subtle worms eye view which created a greater sense of awe. .

In general, the art of the late Gothic period and the early renaissance is not one which I find particularly appealing. While I recognise the immense skill of renaissance painters  and the of its time, it is not artwork which I generally enjoy. The majority of the Mantegna’s paintings are rather dull, however there are a few exceptions. Unfortunately, I don’t think the colours are particularly well handled, although this may be a result of the available materials at the time.


For example, his “Judith and Holofernes” is certainly more colourful than his other works, but I personally dislike the use of colour in this piece. (It should be noted that it is disputed whether Mantengna painted this or Giulio Campagnola did).

All information and pictures are from his Wikipedia page (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrea_Mantegna)

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