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Which clippings match 'Leon Battista Alberti' keyword pg.1 of 1
04 OCTOBER 2013

Filippo Brunelleschi's (re)discovery of Linear Perspective

"When Brunelleschi (re)discovered linear prespective circa 1420, Florentine painters and sculptors became obsessed with it, especially after detailed instructions were published in a painting manual written by a fellow Florentine, Leon Battista Alberti, in 1435. John Berger, an art historian, notes that the convention of perspective fits within Renaissance Humanism because 'it structured all images of reality to address a single spectator who, unlike God, could only be in one place at a time.' In other words, linear perspective eliminates the multiple viewpoints that we see in medieval art, and creates an illusion of space from a single, fixed viewpoint. This suggests a renewed focus on the individual viewer, and we know that individualism is an important part of the Humanism of the Renaissance."

(Beth Harris and Steven Zucker, Smarthistory)



1420 • 3D spaceAncient Greeceart historyEuropean Renaissance • Filippo Brunelleschi • fixed viewpoint • Florence • Giotto di Bondone • Greece • horizon line • illusionistic spaceindividualismJohn BergerKhan AcademyLeon Battista Alberti • linear perspective • mathesismedievalmedieval artmultiple viewpointsperspective viewrediscovered • Renaissance Humanism • Rene Descartessingle perspective point of view • Smarthistory (site) • vanishing point • viewpointvisual illusionvisual perspective • volumetric


Simon Perkins
06 FEBRUARY 2006

Spectacle as Show: not an inferior part of tragedy

"In a brief but suggestive passage from his Ten Books on Architecture, Leone Battista Alberti, the fifteenth–century Renaissance poet, philosopher, and architect, sets public performance into a frame of social exchange. His subject being architecture, he arrives in his eighth book at the point of discussing 'Places for publick Shows.' ...

In placing the Actor within the wider category of public shows, Alberti reminds us of the organic connections among all forms of performance. He is at the opposite pole from Aristotle who considered drama a branch of literary art. What Alberti identifies as Show, Aristotle catalogued as an inferior part of tradegy: spectacle. Alberti's practice coincided with and reinforced the practice of his contemporaries and successors. Until the renaissance, most of these were rhetoricians. Their five parts of rhetoric–the number into which the subject was most frequently divided–included delivery. Here, it would seem, was an opportunity to discuss public performance since delivery concerned the manner of speaking. But quite contrary. Writing on delivery illustrates the conventional and persistent subordination of the event of speaking to the composition of speech. So prevalent was this way of ordering the parts of rhetoric and poetics that rare indeed was the person who conceived of performance as an independent entity."
(Bernard Beckerman, 1990)

Beckerman, Bernard. 1990 p.Prologue X. Theatratical Presentation, New York, USA: Routledge.



aesthetic spectacleamazementarchitectureAristotleastonishmentawe • Bernard Beckerman • curiositydramaemotional immersionEuropean Renaissanceexhilarating experienceLeon Battista Alberti • marvel • narrativeorderingperformance • performance spectacle • Places for publick Shows • Poeticspublic shows • puzzlement • rhetoricshockshow (spectacle)social exchangespacespectaclesurprise • Ten Books on Architecture • theatretragedy • wonder • wonderment

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