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Grossmont College Art Sponsorship Renaissance Period Discussion

Chose two prompts. 

  1. Why did the  Medici patronize Brunelleschi and/ or other artists? Is it just because they liked art?
  2. Cosimo’s grandson Lorezeno was notable in many ways. Elaborate.
  3. What social or political functions does artistic patronage serve?
  4. What are some of the new inventions or innovations that came about during the Renaissance   ( relate to the theme of Patronage fueling innovation)
  5. What are some of the main points this week about the economic factors that led up sparking Renaissance Florence or other parts of Italy?
  6. When watching the video or reading the articles and the pdf from the NYTIMES in this module, Were there Any issues that surprised you in particular?

03 Analysis of a Boticelli Commissioned Painting

In the town of Florence, where the Medici were located, works of art were commissioned for civic pride and for aristocrats who wanted to sponsor chapels for Christian Churches.  It was a common practice to be given forgiveness for sins ( entry to heaven) by lavishing art and artistry to  alterpieces and chapels Patrons also supplied silver chalices, elaborate  embroiderd vestments , bearing the patrons coat of arms.  The artwork commissioned celebrated the achievements of the patron ( not the creative talent of the artist.)  Other commissions were for family portraits. Members of the elite were often painted into religious scenes, such as we see in this painting by Botticelli:

Take just three minutes and watch this analysis of Botticelli’s Adoration of the MAGI: ( see the embedded media below)

Botticelli painted Adoration of the Magi in 1478 as a commissioned altarpiece by the wealthy Italian banker “Gaspare di Zanobi del Lama” for a burial chapel in Santa Maria, Novella. 

This painting is considered as an homage to the Medici family to demonstrate Del Lama’s  attachment to the  influential and powerful political d Medici dynasty. The Medici family was also one of Botticelli’s greatest patrons that is why we find the whole Medici family portrayed in this painting. At this period, patrons commissioned portraits to present them in a most favorable light such as figures from mythology or the Bible. For example, Medici family is presented in Botticelli’s Adoration of the Magi as figures from a biblical scene that shows their faithfulness and devotion as Christians.


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