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In the 20th century, discussion of the relationship between Byzantine art and the art of the Latin West evolved in tandem with scholarship on Byzantine art itself. Identified as the religious imagery and visual and material culture of the Greek Orthodox Empire based at Constantinople between ad 330 and 1453, studies of Byzantine art often encompassed Post-Byzantine art and that of culturally allied states such as Armenian Cilicia, Macedonia, and portions of Italy. As such fields as Palaiologan family manuscripts and wall paintings, Armenian manuscripts, and Crusader manuscripts and icons emerged, scholars identified new intersections between Western medieval and Byzantine art. Subtle comparisons emerged with the recognition that Byzantine art was not static but changed over time in style and meaning, although most analyses identified Byzantine art as an accessible reservoir of the naturalistic, classicizing styles of antiquity. Scholars considering the 7th-century frescoes at S Maria Antiqua and mosaics at S Maria in Cosmedin, both in Rome, and the 8th-century frescoes at Castelseprio and Carolingian manuscripts such as the Coronation Gospels of Charlemagne (Vienna, Schatzkam. SCHK XIII) used formal comparisons with works such as pre-iconoclastic icons at St Catherine’s Monastery on Sinai, along with the history of Byzantine iconoclasm, to argue for the presence of Greek painters in the West. Similarly, Ottonian and Romanesque painting and luxury arts, such as ivories, provided examples of the appropriation of Byzantine imperial imagery. Yet the study of works such as the great 12th-century ...

Article

Mary S. Lawton

[Hui-tsung]

(b Tianshui, Gansu Province, 1082; reg 1101–26; d Wuguocheng, Yilan, Heilongjiang Province, 1135). Chinese ruler and painter. The last emperor of the Northern Song period (960–1127), he was the 11th son of the emperor Shenzong (reg 1068–85). Huizong is considered to be the only accomplished artist in a line of emperors who all shared an interest in the arts. The fall of the Northern Song dynasty is usually attributed to Huizong’s neglect of his official duties in favour of religious and cultural pursuits. This preoccupation is described in miscellaneous notes of Deng Chun (fl 1127–67) in the Hua ji (‘Painting continued’; 1167) and by Tang Hou (fl 1322) in the Gujin huajian (‘Mirror of past and present painting’; 1320s), as well as in later chronicles such as the Tuhui baojian (‘Precious mirror for examining painting’; preface dated 1365) by Xia Wenyan....

Article

Pomposa  

Charles B. McClendon

Italian former Benedictine abbey near the mouth of the Po River and 45 km north of Ravenna in the province of Emilia Romagna. Although first documented in ad 874, a monastic settlement probably existed there at least two centuries earlier. Pomposa rose to prominence in the 10th and 11th centuries through the support of the Holy Roman emperors. Over the course of the 14th century, a notable series of wall paintings in three different buildings were sponsored despite the monastery’s waning fortunes. In 1663 the monastic community was suppressed by papal decree. The site was secularized in 1802 and became property of the Italian state after 1870.

The proportions of the wooden-roofed basilican church, along with the polygonal outline of its main apse, reflect influence from nearby Ravenna and Classe and suggest a date in the 8th or 9th century. An elaborate pavement of mosaic and cut stone (opus sectile...

Article

Chinese, 12th century, male.

Active at the end of the 12th century.

Painter.

Wanyan Tao was a cousin of the Jin emperor Zhangzong (1190-1208). He was the Duke of Miguo and was known as a scholar, collector and painter.

Article

Chinese, 12th century, male.

Born 1168; died 1208.

Painter. Figures.

Zhangzong was a Jin emperor who reigned from 1190 to 1208. He was also a painter, patron and collector.

Article

Chinese, 12th – 13th century, male.

Active c. 1190 or c. 1230.

Painter.

Zhao Xigu was an erudite artist who wrote the Dong Tian Qing Lu Ji, a guide for aesthetes and antique collectors. The book has 10 chapters, one of which concerns painting. It contains valuable information on the practices of various painters and discusses mounting, the positioning of signatures and seals, and copies and forgeries. His book is still useful, especially when it comes to problems of authentication....