This discussion will focus upon comparing Romanesque and Gothic styles. To start this discussion, State University of New York at Albany’s Dr. Strum has created a virtual tour of the Cloisters, a branch of the Metropolitan Museum in New York City that is dedicated to medieval art and architecture.
The Cloisters – Virtual TourClick to view undefined
From the textbook or online sources, choose a pair of sculptures, manuscript illuminations, or church architectural details to research and compare. (If you look for your artworks online, it might be helpful to search by subject matter, as well as period.) One work should be Romanesque, and one should be Gothic. The Gothic style continued into the 14th century, so examples from this time period are appropriate. If you can find similar subjects, such as two standing figures, two Last Judgments, or two Annunciations, so much the better for ease of comparison. If you choose church details, consider two towers, two views of vaulting, or two views of side walls, one from a Romanesque church and one from a Gothic church.
As you research and analyze your works, keep the following in mind:
Consider the original purpose served by each of your artworks (if known).
Consider the iconography. Is there symbolism that may not be readily apparent? Is a story being told? Please explain.
For architecture, consider the forms used. Romanesque refers to the use of older Roman forms. How did these forms and engineering change during the Gothic period?
Expressive exaggeration is characteristic of medieval art, especially in Romanesque art. How is your work expressive? Compare the treatment of figures, drapery, facial features, and spatial arrangement.
Does naturalism or evidence of worldly observation on the part of the artist show at all? If yes or no, please explain.