BBC | The Renaissance Unchained [English Subtitles]

Waldemar Januszczak challenges the traditional notion of the Renaissance and shows breathtaking yet unknown masterpieces.

Gods, Myths and Oil Paints

He challenges the idea of the Renaissance having fixed origins in Italy and showcases the ingenuity in both technique and ideas behind great artists such as Van Eyck, Memling, Van der Weyden, Cranach, Riemenschneider and Durer.

Whips, Deaths and Madonnas

Waldemar returns to Italy to trace the Italian Renaissance from its perceived origins with Giotto and takes a look at the importance of religious narrative in Italian art. While there were certainly a few aesthetic influences from classical art, the majority of Italian painting and sculpture in the 14th and 15th centuries was created to inspire devotion, especially in the work of Piero della Francesca, Michelangelo, Leonardo, Raphael and Fra Angelico.

Silk, Sex and Sin

Waldemar focuses on Venice and its extraordinary impact on art history. He celebrates colour, drama and vitality by looking at the delicate colours of Bellini, the mystery of Giorgione, the splendour of Titian, the drama and chaos of Tintoretto and the glorious banquets of Veronese.

Hell, Snakes and Giants

Waldemar looks at the surprising climax of the Renaissance as it spiralled into madness and distortion. This was a period full of war, confusion and darkness, which was captured perfectly in the art of Leonardo, Bosch, Arcimboldo, Palissy, the Italian Mannerists and El Greco.

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