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The role of religious thought and influence on the development of Western art and culture - Term Paper Example

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A religion is very much a part of the believer’s identity, and as such will find a way into the creative life of the individual in many ways. …
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The role of religious thought and influence on the development of Western art and culture
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Download file to see previous pages Other artists (or even the same artist at a different time) may even try to conceal their religious identity in their artwork, but at times it may still be evident and thus influential. As such, there are many examples of religious thought within the realm of Western art and culture, and these may come from less than obvious sources. The most populous religion in the Western world is Christianity, and it is true that this religion has had a large influence on Western art of all types. However, it would be wrong to assume that this is the only religion or religious movement that has exerted its effects on culture, as Islam and Eastern religions have travelled to the West and left their mark. Additionally, new religious movements can also be felt within some more contemporary examples of artistry, and these will be explored throughout this paper. The thesis is that art will prove to have been heavily influenced by several religious traditions throughout the ages and Christianity will prove to be more influential than most within the context of Western art and culture. ...
hristianity has had on Western culture (rather the opposite), rebelling against the religion is still an important effect and as such these works will be discussed also. One of the most famous artists of the Renaissance period was Leonardo da Vinci, and he produced a number of paintings that reflect Christian ideology. Some of the most famous of these are The Last Supper, Virgin of the Rocks and Baptism of Christ, all of which were painted at the latter end of the 15th century (Janson & Janson, 2004) These works continue to have an astounding presence within the culture of today, and Leonardo da Vinci is one of the most mysterious and intriguing artists of this time, not least because some of his Christian based works seem to mask areligious messages. Many artists have cited da Vinci as an inspiration, meaning that these works continue to have a message today. Another figure within the Renaissance art world was Machiavelli, who was a political philosopher who created numerous works of poetry and literature. Interestingly, Machiavelli was a humanist and did not officially follow Christianity. However, given the religious climate at the time, Christianity indubitably affected the writing of Machiavelli, despite much of it being reactionary, and as such this can be classified as a lasting effect that Christianity has had on literature (Virolli, 1998). Although this was a time in which many pieces of art were for the Church or felt the need to appease the Church, there are other times in which Christianity has had an effect on art and culture in the West. For example, within modern times, a lot of work has been of an atheist nature, but many artists do still produce images in a religious vein. For example, Henri Matisse, a prolific French painter, produced a stained-glass ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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