Wednesday, October 7, 2009
Art in 16th century Northern Europe reflects the principles of the Protestant Reformation in many different ways. Martin Luther didn't agree when the church started to sell indulgences to the people, so they could just buy their way into heaven. He hated this so much he began to write a 95 thesis and when he was finished he hung them on the door of the church. Luther used the printing press many times to be able to get his thoughts around Europe. People was able to see woodcut prints, which in turn they were able to understand the meaning better, like devotional aids. The woodcut prints were being used so much during this time because they were the least expensive of all art forms. During this time the Catholic and the Protestant churches became split. Catholics put many different forms of church decoration as a helpful hint to communicating with God in the Protestant church they were very plain. They believed that decoration could distract the viewer from the real reason they should be at church, to speak to directly to God. Protestants believed this so they started woodcut prints to send out their beliefs to the world. In the art at this time it started to show more of the individualistic type of theme. There are still a lot of portraits and still life paintings. Now we are seeing more of the religious paintings pulling away and are beginning to see more on the Bible and it's interpretations of daily life.