Publish at September 22 2021 Updated September 22 2021

Could They Draw? The artists of the past did not draw badly

From prehistory to the Renaissance, each visual style is explained with its time

Art is extremely subjective. In front of a painting, everyone will find the artist's proposal interesting or not. However, as the internet has led to sarcasm, there are many jokes and sites laughing a little at the visual styles of the time.

For example, paintings from the 14th century often show the Virgin Mary with a baby that is deformed for our modern standards. Now, this is justified because it is not an infant but a homunculus, a figurative representation of the greatness of the Christ to be born. Then, with time and mores, it will take on features closer to real cherubs.

So, the whole history of art is explained by its time, as youtubers Manon Bril and Charlie Danger make clear. Cave drawings seem "naive" to our eye but they represent bestiaries, cosmological events, constellations, etc.

In fact, we know today by the way that caves were not where prehistoric man lived but rather places of worship. The Egyptians did not draw bodies from the side because they did not know how to do it from the front. This is aspectivity which therefore highlighted the important parts of the body according to the knowledge of perspective at the time.

Length: 12 minutes

Learn more about this resource
See more resources from this institution




Access exclusive services for free

Subscribe and receive newsletters on:

  • The lessons
  • The learning resources
  • The file of the week
  • The events
  • The technologies

In addition, index your favorite resources in your own folders and find your history of consultation.

Subscribe to the newsletter

Add to my playlists

Create a playlist

Receive our news by email

Every day, stay informed about digital learning in all its forms. Great ideas and resources. Take advantage, it's free!