Christian Influence On Byzantine Art

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1. Theodora panel mirrors the panel of Justinian’s. Theodora is wearing elaborate clothing and jewelry, such as; pearls, rubies, emeralds and very large pearls. In the back of her head, just like in Justinian Mosacis is a halo, which speaks to the divine origin of her authority. In addition, similar to Justinian, who’s carrying the large bowl for the Eucharist bread, Theodora is carrying a large jar for the Eucharist wine. She is surrounded by her attendants symbolizing the imperial court; one of them has beckoned her to pass through the curtain doorway to enter the emperor’s procession.
Some of the figures are created more individualistically than others. Theodora and the four attendants, the two on her right and the two on her left are created
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The Byzantine art closely followed the Early Christian art, just as in the Early Christian art manuscript painting was an important art form, during Early Byzantine era. For example, figure 9-17 Crucifixion and resurrection, Rabbula Gospels, the manuscript showed Christ being risen from the tomb, while surrounded by mandorla. Although Mary was not mentioned in the gospels as being a witness of Christ ascension, she played an important role in the medieval art, both in the East and in the West.
Another example of Christian influence on the Byzantine art are the mosaics. Similar to Christians they use the mosaics to depict elaborate figural scenes using bright colors. You can see this in figure 9-19 of the Byzantine art, the mosaics depicted a huge mosaic of Hagia Sophia showing the virgin and child enthroned (Gardner’s pg. 270).
The Byzantine architecture was also very similar to the Christian’s architecture. They followed similar plan structure. The Byzantine art achieved the full expression of a mystical Christianity in terms of oriental lavishness. The Byzantine art form has abandoned the formal physical beauty admired by the Greeks for the Christian art, which appears to be formless, timeless conception of religious
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He created the political stability and wealth that allowed him to institute an educational system to educate his clergy Therefore, he created schools not for the general public, but for the monks so they can copy book from the Early Christian art. His clergy was responsible for creating a new, more compact, and more easily written and legible version of Latin called Caroline minuscule (Gardner’s pg. 317). This was able to increase the production of manuscripts. Many of the classical text survived due to Charlemagne and his scribes. Charlemagne was able to revived the glory of the Early Christian art through artistic patronage, commissioning portrait statues fig 11-12 and large numbers of illustrated manuscripts fig. 11-12A (Gardner’s pg. 317).

4. Matthew of the Coronation Gospel is a model of classical style art. The artist used illusionistic brush work to define the massive drapery folds around Matthew’s body. Whereas, in fig. 11-14 Matthew is hunched over composing the gospel. The painting is energetic with frenze lines. His eyes are wide open, the folds of his drapery writhe and vibrate, and the landscape behind him rears up

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