The “Baroque Period” began in Rome, Italy around 1600 and spread throughout Europe, ending in 1750. The word baroque refers to something extravagantly ornate, elaborate, or intricately detailed in style, whether it be painting, sculpture, architecture, music, literature, or fashion.
This period in history began when Catholic popes started funding the construction of grand cathedrals with magnificent architectural features to draw in more people.
Some of the famous artists who lived during the Baroque period were: Rembrandt, Velázquez, Caravaggio, Rubens, Vermeer, Van Dyck, Poussin and others.
But the Baroque period didn’t just give us amazing artists, we also gained some of the most brilliant composers of all time such as Bach, Vivaldi, Handel and Pachelbel. It was truly a time of growth and expansion in all areas of the arts.
Baroque style spread from Italy into France, then throughout other parts of Europe. The notion that monarchs in these countries ruled by a “divine right” from God was widespread.
In Catholic countries, the art was mainly religious in nature. While in Protestant countries, religious art and imagery were forbidden. Consequently, paintings in these countries consisted of portraits, still life, landscapes, and scenes from everyday life.
It was in Holland, or the Netherlands, where Rembrandt painted, so we categorize him under Dutch Baroque, which is often called the “Dutch Golden Age.”
Click on the artist’s name below to learn more.
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Baroque Art of Italy & Flanders:
- Gian Lorenzo Bernini
- Francesco Borromini
- Michelangelo da Caravaggio
- Artemisia Gentileschi
- Peter Paul Rubens
- Bartolome Esteban Murillo
- Jusepe de Ribera
- Diego Velazquez