Neoclassicism and Romanticism

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During the 18th century, a new movement brushed through Europe and created a primitive change in politics, science, and art. The Enlightenment was partially a reaction to the Industrial Revolution, as the world witnessed the importance of technological innovation for the growth of humankind. Neoclassicism and Romanticism literature and arts affected the present world. Neoclassicism was the foundation of romanticism especially in the influence either in literature, arts and of their genres.Neoclassical and Romanticism both developed from Greece and Rome in antiquity.

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This age of reason and enlightened thinking dominated Europe, creating two important eras in philosophy and visual art.

Neoclassicism and Romanticism competed side by side, bringing creatives together to express emotion as well as a love for the classics of Greece and Rome (Melody Nieves, 2017).While Neoclassical art was directed towards to classical Greco-Roman art, the Romantic era placed the emphasis on capturing emotions like fear and horror in visual form. Architect Leon Battista Alberti believed in Classicism defined beauty in architecture as “the harmony and concord of all the parts achieved by following well-founded rules and resulting in a unity such that nothing could be added or taken away or altered except for the worse” (Britannia 2018).In paintings, artists chose things that glorified man and to use use characters for their actions being represented, and emulate the sight of the world. Often considered the direct opposite of the Romantic era, Neoclassical art had a huge grip on Europe for many years. At the peak of its philosophy, Neoclassicism revived the “true style” of classical art from Ancient Greece and Rome. Another example is painter Jacques-Louis, David made this style famous through the token painting of the Oath of the Horatii. It stressed the importance of love and sacrifice for one’s country (Melody Nieves, 2017).

The examples of antiquity in the Renaissance provided the guidelines of Classicism for the next couple of centuries. In the 17th-century France mocked those examples, assisted the principal French artists to a real Classicism. Nicolas Poussin and Fran?§ois Mansart were important were key figures in showing the real Classicism in architecture and paintings. The main characteristics of Neoclassical paintings were organizing the composition around symbolic numbers, and telling heroic stories of moral civics. Romantics rejected the rational ways of Neoclassical artists, and held their love of individual expression over the restraints of traditional customs. Romanticism and Neoclassicism both had their strengths and contributed greatly to the present world (Melody Nieves, 2017).

Sir Joshua Reynolds, an English painter provided tips in Renaissance Classicism that created a span of English paintings. In the 18th century, Classicism was being viewed from different perspectives. The authoritative equation of Classicism and beauty was claimed by people that didn’t understand the true value of Classicism. The accepted Roman antiquity was being challenged by supporters of Greece. Johann Winckelmann, an ancient art historian, for example, saw in Greek sculpture “a noble simplicity and quiet grandeur” and admonished artists to imitate nature by imitating the Greeks. In painting, Jacques-Louis David reestablished the formal guidelines of Raphael and of Augustan Rome. He turned classicism into a tool that served the new subjects painters were called on to render. Restraint and simplicity, along with precise andclear form and noble content, continued to constitute the Classicism in many of the works of such later artists as Pablo Picasso, Aristide Maillol, and Henry Moore.

After the mid-18th century, Classicism in architecture became connected with rationalism. Various Neoclassicisms were demonstrated by Greek, Roman, and Renaissance models. In the early 20th century, classicists demanded for harmony and proportion to be applied to new technology to give order to many styles. Le Corbusier and Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, historian architect depicted two different ways of adapting characteristics. Cycles of Classicism in literature and music connect with the classical eras in the visual arts and architecture.The first major stage of Classicism in literature occurred during the Renaissance. France in the 17th century developed a rich and diversified Classicism in literature, as it had also in the visual arts. Classicism in literature arose later in England than in France and reached its peak in the late 18th century with the works of John Dryden and Alexander Pope. Some other major figures in the German classical literary movement were Johann Wolfgang, Ephraim Lessing, and Friedrich Schiller (Gersh-Nesic, Dr. Beth, 2018). Ludwig Beethoven, Mozart, and Joseph Haydn were composers who dominated the classical period in music. Their music polished the classical era with instrumentals. This is the first time in their era where instrumentals became more known than vocal music. This led to the form of symphony orchestras, chamber ensembles, and various compositional forms.The idea of the artist as a genius, emotionally connected and originality was turned against by the radical world. William Blake was an exception to this, he practiced a more visionary art, the favored landscape of English painters.

Hearing the words “Romantic art,” one might think of love and kindness, but that is not usually true to William Blake.To him, it simply infers emotional art. Romantic art hit the turn of the century, and had a large number of participants for the next couple of years. Romantic art continued to focus on feelings and emotions.The end of the Romantic era created a new style of Realism, which influenced literature, the novel and drama, painting, and music. The early period of the Romantic Era was marked by war, with the French Revolution in 1789 and then the Napoleonic Wars until 1815. During this time, individuals began to express deep, intense, and emotions like Beethoven. During the Romantic era, an affectionate portrait of the Middle Ages emerged that was usually no more accurate than the Enlightenment writers. Historians started to believe that Alfred Einstein to thought to extend the ” Romantic Era” throughout the 19th century until the 20th. A simple, memorable way to imagine the Romantic era: an age of “heroic individuals” whose styles and subjects symbolized the power of the human will or spirit in shaping history and art. The most known Romantic arts were nothing but three novels: The Hunchback of Notre-Dame and Les Mis?©rables, both by the French writer Victor Hugo, and Frankenstein, by 18-year-old British writer Mary Shelley.

The originality influenced by Romanticism, classical art was in a wide spectrum, and challenged the Romantic concept of “creation from nothingness.” Beyond technique, the Romantics also went against the political art of the Neoclassical era with more devout are with displays of intense emotion. Art of this period also depicted the romantic ideal of nationalism, but for reasons of length, we will focus on landscapes in this post. In contrast to the social art of the Enlightenment, Romantics were in able to trust the human world, and tended to believe connection with nature was mentally and morally healthy. Many Romantic ideas about the nature and purpose of art, remained important for later generations, and often underlie modern views, despite opposition from theorists. Translator and prominent Romantic August Wilhelm Schlegel argued that the most power of human nature is to divide and diverge into opposite directions. The Romantic era ended by giving new styles of painting and music.Though different in style, the eras of Neoclassical and Romantic art both became embedded in Europe’s history. Neoclassicism was the foundation of romanticism especially in the influence either in literature, arts and of their genres.

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Neoclassicism and Romanticism. (2019, Jul 30). Retrieved from