39 Facts About Baroque


Baroque is a style of architecture, music, dance, painting, sculpture, poetry, and other arts that flourished in Europe from the early 17th century until the 1740s.

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Baroque style used contrast, movement, exuberant detail, deep colour, grandeur, and surprise to achieve a sense of awe.

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New motifs introduced by Baroque are: the cartouche, trophies and weapons, baskets of fruit or flowers, and others, made in marquetry, stucco, or carved.

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Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who was a musician and composer as well as a philosopher, wrote in 1768 in the Encyclopedie: "Baroque music is that in which the harmony is confused, and loaded with modulations and dissonances.

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Similarly, Lutheran Baroque art developed as a confessional marker of identity, in response to the Great Iconoclasm of Calvinists.

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Baroque churches were designed with a large central space, where the worshippers could be close to the altar, with a dome or cupola high overhead, allowing light to illuminate the church below.

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The dome was one of the central symbolic features of Baroque architecture illustrating the union between the heavens and the earth.

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Interiors of Baroque churches became more and more ornate in the High Baroque, and focused around the altar, usually placed under the dome.

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The Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela was modernized with a series of Baroque additions beginning at the end of the 17th century, starting with a highly ornate bell tower, then flanked by two even taller and more ornate towers, called the Obradorio, added between 1738 and 1750 by Fernando de Casas Novoa.

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Architects of the Spanish Baroque had an effect far beyond Spain; their work was highly influential in the churches built in the Spanish colonies in Latin America and the Philippines.

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The Church built by the Jesuits for a college in Tepotzotlan, with its ornate Baroque facade and tower, is a good example.

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Some were in Rococo style, a distinct, more flamboyant and asymmetric style which emerged from the Baroque, then replaced it in Central Europe in the first half of the 18th century, until it was replaced in turn by classicism.

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In Poland, the Italian-inspired Polish Baroque lasted from the early 17th to the mid-18th century and emphasised richness of detail and colour.

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The first Baroque building in present-day Poland and probably one of the most recognizable is the Church of St Peter and Paul in Krakow, designed by Giovanni Battista Trevano.

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However, the most celebrated work of Polish Baroque is the Fara Church in Poznan, with details by Pompeo Ferrari.

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Unlike Italian buildings, French Baroque buildings have no broken pediments or curvilinear facades.

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Baroque decided, on his return to Russia, to construct similar monuments in St Petersburg, which became the new capital of Russia in 1712.

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Early major monuments in the Petrine Baroque include the Peter and Paul Cathedral and Menshikov Palace.

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In Moscow, Naryshkin Baroque became widespread, especially in the architecture of Eastern Orthodox churches in the late 17th century.

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Baroque painters worked deliberately to set themselves apart from the painters of the Renaissance and the Mannerism period after it.

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One important domain of Baroque painting was Quadratura, or paintings in trompe-l'œil, which literally "fooled the eye".

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Baroque designed tapestries, carpets and theatre decoration as well as painting.

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Baroque's work was extremely popular with Madame Pompadour, the Mistress of King Louis XV.

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Baroque sculpture was inspired by ancient Roman statuary, particularly by the famous first century CE statue of Laocoon, which was unearthed in 1506 and put on display in the gallery of the Vatican.

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Baroque advised the students to work from classical models, rather than from nature.

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Baroque told the students, "When I had trouble with my first statue, I consulted the Antinous like an oracle.

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Term Baroque is used to designate the style of music composed during a period that overlaps with that of Baroque art.

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Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who was a musician and noted composer as well as philosopher, made a very similar observation in 1768 in the famous Encyclopedie of Denis Diderot: "Baroque music is that in which the harmony is confused, and loaded with modulations and dissonances.

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Baroque period was a golden age for theatre in France and Spain; playwrights included Corneille, Racine and Moliere in France; and Lope de Vega and Pedro Calderon de la Barca in Spain.

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Baroque had a Catholic and conservative character in Spain, following an Italian literary model during the Renaissance.

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The Hispanic Baroque theatre aimed for a public content with an ideal reality that manifested fundamental three sentiments: Catholic religion, monarchist and national pride and honour originating from the chivalric, knightly world.

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Baroque established a new dramatic formula that broke the three Aristotle unities of the Italian school of poetry and a fourth unity of Aristotle which is about style, mixing of tragic and comic elements showing different types of verses and stanzas upon what is represented.

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Baroque was in charge of styling the Gardens of Buen Retiro, of Zarzuela, and of Aranjuez and the construction of the theatrical building of Coliseo del Buen Retiro.

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Baroque's touring company was perhaps the most significant and important of the 17th century.

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Baroque garden, known as the jardin a la francaise or French formal garden, first appeared in Rome in the 16th century, and then most famously in France in the 17th century in the gardens of Vaux le Vicomte and the Palace of Versailles.

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Baroque gardens were built by Kings and princes in Germany, the Netherlands, Austria, Spain, Poland, Italy and Russia until the mid-18th century, when they began to be remade into by the more natural English landscape garden.

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Purpose of the baroque garden was to illustrate the power of man over nature, and the glory of its builder, Baroque gardens were laid out in geometric patterns, like the rooms of a house.

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Baroque gardens required enormous numbers of gardeners, continual trimming, and abundant water.

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Baroque was accompanied by several artists, including the engraver Nicolas Cochin and the architect Soufflot.

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