Leon Battista Alberti

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Leon Battista Alberti, born in the 15th Century originally from Genoa was educated at Padua and Bologna in classics, mathematics and Church canon law. He was a typical Humanist and his education also made him well-versed in philosophy, science and the arts. In 1421, he attended the University of Bologna where he studied law, which he did not enjoy. Later on, he obtained a degree in canon Law which then led to his mathematical studies. His book, Della Pittura published around the year 1430 were written to influence both artists and patrons through a combination of technical detail and philosophical discussion on Florentine art. This book is divided into 3 parts, the first relates to perspective and mathematics. The second and third parts…show more content…
Leonardo’s scientific studies resulted in the paintings of rocks, plants, light and atmosphere. We can see hills, fields and the sky in the tree windows behind Christ. This is in a classical style, shown by the coffered ceiling which was introduced by ancient Greek and Romans and re-introduced again by Alberti. The orthogonals run from the coffered ceiling, the table and windows and from the disciples and their gestures which all then centres on Christ. The use of foreshortening in this painting is to emphasize the drama of the scene and to keep the figures in harmonious groups. As we can see on the third figure on the right, St Philip tries to deny that he would be the betrayer and to show this, his arm is foreshortened. While St Matthew, the fourth figure on the right, has his arms outflung which was made by foreshortening. This gesture was to help portray his horror, as well as his mouth opened talking to the 3 men to the left of him. There are other gestures that helped depict the idea of betrayal, as we can see on the left side of the painting where St Peter whispers to St. John’s ear while pushing Judas forward. All these gestures lead the viewers’ attention to the centre, where Christ is positioned. Behind Jesus, we can see the window where the natural light comes in which frames Christ’s head, like a halo. Christ’s position in the centre allowed him to be in front of the three windows, which symbolizes the Trinity. As well as that, we can see that he
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