We explain what Baroque is and the main topics it covers. In addition, how was the painting and literature of this period.
What is the baroque?
The baroque was a period of the history of culture in the West, which spanned the entire 17th and early 18th centuries, extending more or less depending on the historical process particular of each country. This period was characterized by a change in the way of conceiving art (the baroque style), which had an impact on numerous areas of culture and knowledge, such as letters, architecture, fine arts and even philosophy.
Emerged in an era of tensions between Catholic and Protestant countries, between absolutist and parliamentary monarchies, the Baroque took place in Western Europe and in some of its colonies, as Latin America, and constituted the intermediate step between Mannerism and Rococ .
Its origin, however, is located in Italy, during the period known as Seicento, and its name for a long time was used disparagingly, to refer to something ornate, capricious, deceptive.
After the 19th century, the term baroque was revalued and is currently used not only to refer to this period, but for any art manifestation It is an aesthetic that goes against the values of classicism.
The baroque period is usually classified into three different moments: primitive (1580 a 1630), pleno (1630 to 1680) and late (1680 a 1750). Throughout them, art gained in refinement and ornamentation, cultivating a taste for anecdotal and surprising, for realism and illusions. Often, it is interpreted as a greater crudeness in the confrontation between artist and reality.
It can serve you: Plastic Arts.
The name "baroque" according to some theories comes from the word in Portuguese used for pearls that had some deformity or irregularity (equivalent to "barruecas" in Spanish). Hence, the name was initially used to refer to a certain ornate, grandiloquent, excessive artistic style.
Later it was appreciated as a "degenerate" (according to Jackob Burckhardt) of Renaissance, to end up being considered the negation of the classic: where the latter is masculine, rational and Apollonian, the baroque was feminine, irrational and dionysian. These are two opposite ways of conceiving art and culture.
The baroque, then, radically changed the way of doing art and thinking about culture, expressing itself mainly in two main ways:
- Emphasis on reality . Attention is paid to the mundane aspect of life, to everyday life and the ephemeral, which led to the "vulgarization" or worldliness of the religious imaginary in Catholic countries.
- Grandiloquent vision . The concepts of the national and the religious were exalted as expressions of political power, thus producing monumental, lavish and ornate works, often with some propaganda content in favor of the aristocracy and clergy.
The baroque was thus a culture of the image, which aspired to generate the total work of art: one that staged the dominant power (the Church and the monarchy), but through deception and devices that were summed up in the theatrum phrase mundi ("The world is a theater").
Baroque painting was one of the most favored artistic expressions in the period and exhibited the greatest diversity in each of its geographical manifestations. Their styles can be classified into two opposing slopes:
- Naturalism A style that is based on the observation and reproduction of nature, but accommodating moral or aesthetic guidelines of the artist, when not very free interpretations made of the copied object. This style is heir to the tenebrism (taste for chiaroscuros) of Caravaggio, so it is also known as Caravaggismo.
- Classicism The opposite style to naturalism and its influences was classicism, which was as realistic as that one, but was due to a more rational conception, in which drawing over color predominated, and the works were closed and without the baroque diagonal slashes.
Baroque literature was highly determined by the Catholic counter-reform and absolutist values, so a depressed and pessimistic view of existence predominates in it, in which everything that exists is vain, illusory. I dream, and the vital attitude is doubt, disenchantment and prudence.
The main literary genres of Baroque were:
- The novel With Don Quixote as an example, the possibility of satire and mockery arises in this genre, using high-sounding language full of rhetorical figures, as well as mythological allusions. The picaresque novel is booming right now.
- The bucolic poetry . Pastoral poetry, profusely cultivated in ancient Rome, comes alive in the baroque and pastoral loves, popular icon and representatives of the rural life of the flat people, gain strength in the popular imagination.
- The theater The theater, especially in Spain of the so-called Golden Age, reaches one of its highest points in the Baroque, with sacramental comedies and sacramental cars, or dramatizations of biblical passages.
Baroque authors and representatives
A partial list of the main Baroque authors includes:
- Miguel de Cervantes
- Calder n de la Barca
- Lope de Vega
- Tirso de Molina
- Luis de G ngora
- Francisco de Quevedo
- Sr. Juana In s de la Cruz
- John Donne
- William Shakespeare
- Laurence Sterne
- Pedro Pablo Rubens
- Diego Vel squez
- Johannes Vermeer
- Johann Sebastian Bach
- Antonio Vivaldi
- Georg Friedrich H ndel