the Limbourg brothers gebroeders Van Limburg
gebroeders Van Limburg

Design: LaVerbe

Art around 1400

In the Middle Ages painting was initially used in conjunction with sculpture. Virtually all of the wood carving and much of the sculpture was gilded or multicoloured. In Italy the Renaissance had taken hold, with painters such as Giotto and the Lorenzetti brothers, who made beautiful murals. In France and the Low Lands, parchment was introduced as a base for paintings. The burgeoning art trade ensured that artists familiarised themselves with each other's work.

Painting underwent several developments that encapsulated the European tradition. Emotions were discernible in faces and postures, and the figures were rendered in their natural surroundings. Perspective became an important element and originality was increasingly appreciated and valued. Painting became a secular profession with more and more non-religious patrons and subject matter.

Around 1400 Paris became the centre of art and the art trade. Many painters, gold- and silver smiths, embroiderers, sculptors, ivory crafters, and book illuminators settled in the city, producing work of the highest quality. For the most part they worked in studios and workshops in the city, under commission of the aristocracy, the highest levels of the clergy, and wealthy citizens.

Paris attracted artists from far-off places, who brought the influences of their own regions with them to the capital. When they returned, temporarily or permanently, to their homelands, they had been transformed by what they had seen, learned and experienced in Paris. Drawings, sketches, individual miniatures, manuscripts, and small painted panels were easily transported. In this way the influence of Paris spread to other regions and vice versa. Through this exchange of influences and styles, an international style emerged, characterised by refinement and elegance, which we recognise as 'International Gothic'.

gebroeders Van Limburg