The Lamentation over the Dead Christ

The Lamentation over the Dead Christ

Classicism in The Lamentation over the Dead Christ

The Renaissance Era was an epoch of artistic resurgence in the history of Europe This period was marked by developments in Italian Renaissance paintings with the renewal of classical forms motifs and subjects In edict to discern the Classicism that prospered during this age conceivably without need from the Classical architecture of the ancient Romans The exploration for cerebral legitimacy through art set apart the period During this period contemporary Classicism was described as the proper technique Methodically this set in motion a blitz against Baroque art which with its highlighting of embellishment and delusion was considered to be distinctly fictitious Andrea Mantegna 14311506 in particular modeled his work entitled The Lamentation over the Dead Christ c1480 in rudiments of Classicism

Mantegna used mainly foreshortening a perspective used for compressing objects from a definitive viewpoint and chiaroscuro the contrast between light and shadows bring this painting to life with essentials of Classicism In this period Classicism took on more visibly structural insinuations of the use of perspective chiefly by the use of Foreshortening Foreshortening occurs when an object appears compressed when seen from a particular viewpoint and the effect of perspective causes distortion

Foreshortening is a predominantly constructive creative mechanism used to give the sense of threedimensional capacity and generate emotion in a picture To sensationalize the supine Christ in perception Mantegna paints his light source higher up the horizon line to create illusion that the viewer will appear to be looking at an angle The more askew the vanishing point the more slanted the icon will be as seen in the painting Because the body of Christ is supine and symmetrical the vanishing point is diametrically in the core of the perspective line Because the spectators plane is parallel to Christs head at this point the base perspective line appears to be horizontal This imaginary line gives the fundamental foreshortening perspective The farther away the image is from the viewer the nearer the illusion is to being perpendicular to the portrait plane as seen in the Dead Christ The position of the mourners The Virgin Mary and St John are on the horizon line to the left the desertion point Christs Head as another foremost model to carry this position of foreshortening The expanse from this point to the center of the perspective line denotes the distance within the painting for the viewer If the point is isolated from the vanishing point the mourners will appear condensed and distant If it is too close they will emerge lengthened as if it is too close to the observer Essentially distorting the ray of light traveling from its origin to the onlookers judgment and ruining the illusion within the painting This element is key to understanding Mantegnas brilliance of perspective in this fresco In the case of the holes in Christs hands and feet the perspective of the light source that illuminates at an angle the area of the holes also represents the use of foreshortening on the picture plane When the light source hits the area of the holes it hits at the appropriate angle on the picture plane In order for the resulting image to appear identical to the intended scene the eyewitness of the perspective must scrutinize the image from the exact vantage point used in the geometric calculations comparative to Christ This proper use of foreshortening abandons visual imperfections that what would appear to be alterations in the painting when analyzed from a discrete point These conspicuous distortions in foreshortening are more evident when viewing Christs thorax as the perspective estimated from the surroundings to the spectator becomes more finely tuned and comparative to the portrait base

In application unless the viewer desires a radical perspective like viewing the body of Christ from the base the perspe

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