venerdì 25 giugno 2010
Florence, Italy: Brunelleschi's Dome
The building of the dome on Florence cathedral, by Filippo Brunelleschi, can be considered one of the Renaissance's main building enterprises. The highest expression of a new attitude, placing man and his abilities at the centre of the world and finding in classic antiquity the premises for cultural rebirth after the dark Middle Ages.
Renaissance society was based on completely different values to the medieval ones of chivalry and nobility. The new ideals were self-sufficiency, civic virtue, intelligence and almost unlimited trust in man's abilities.
Even though the Middle Ages weren't that far away and nor could they be considered the backward world depicted for so long, Renaissance men were aware they were different: in less than twenty years, starting from the building of the Brunelleschi Cupola, a small group of artists in just one city, Florence, brought about one of the most important revolutions in cultural history, and not just Italian.
The figure of Brunelleschi was in tune with this new world. He perfectly incarnated the figure of the Renaissance man, free, intelligent and trusting in the strength of his ideas. He was the son of a wealthy Florentine Notary and had been educated in a liberal manner; from boyhood onwards he'd shown interest in sculpture, mechanics and mathematics. To him we owe the study of the linear prospective which up until him, had already been used, but without precise rules of reference.