What is Baroque Architecture | Baroque Architecture Characteristics | Examples of Baroque Architecture

What is Baroque Architecture | Baroque Architecture Characteristics | Examples of Baroque Architecture

What is Baroque Architecture | Baroque Architecture Characteristics | Examples of Baroque Architecture

Baroque Architecture

Baroque architecture is a European style that evolved in the 17th century. It is characterized by the emotional intensity of its decoration and dramatic use of light.

Baroque architecture also stood in contrast with the simplicity of vernacular architecture, which it often replaced when commissioned by a church.

Baroque Architecture Characteristics

The Baroque style of architecture, music, dance, painting, sculpture, and other arts thrived in Europe from the early 17th century.

It was practiced in the regions of the Spanish and Portuguese empires, including the Iberian Peninsula, until the first decade of the nineteenth century, along with new styles.

It came after Renaissance art and Mannerism and before the Rococo (sometimes known as “late Baroque”) and Neoclassical styles.

The Catholic Church supported it as a method of countering the simplicity and austerity of Protestant architecture, art, and music, while Lutheran Baroque art thrived in other regions of Europe as well.

To produce a sensation of awe, the Baroque style employed contrast, movement, extravagant detail, rich color, grandeur, and surprise.

The style started in Rome at the beginning of the 17th century and quickly expanded to France, northern Italy, Spain, and Portugal, then to Austria, southern Germany, and Russia.

By the 1730s, it had evolved into an even more flamboyant style known as rocaille or Rococo, which was popular in France and Central Europe until the mid- to late-eighteenth century.

The style is characterized by abundant and elaborate decoration in the decorative arts. Each country’s break from Renaissance classicism has its unique form.

However, a recurring aspect is that the decorative features introduced by the Renaissance serve as the beginning point in all cases.

To produce shock effects, the classical repertory is packed, dense, overlapping, and laden.

Cartouches, trophies and weaponry, baskets of fruit or flowers, and other new themes introduced by Baroque are created in marquetry, stucco, or carved.

Key Features of Baroque Architecture

There are numerous distinguishing features of Italian Baroque architecture.

It often contains curving forms such as oval shapes and a blend of concave and convex forms, which cause walls to seem undulating or wavy with a strong feeling of motion.

On building surfaces, you’ll frequently find amassing of components, which refers to the gathering of features such as columns and ornamental flourishes.

Surface is covered with architectural features that are repeated. Another distinguishing feature is distortion, with figures that are stretched, fractured, or altered in some way to stand out.

The twisted columns on Bernini’s baldachin in St. Peter’s Basilica are an excellent example of distortion.

Columns, occasionally capped with capitals and massive volutes, will be seen in buildings (scroll or spiral forms).

Sculptural and wall components frequently protrude from the surface. These form-filled surfaces are done on purpose to enhance the interaction of light and shadow over them.

Baroque Architecture Examples

The dynamic façades of the University of Valladolid (Diego Tome and Fray Pedro de la Visitación, 1719) and the western façade (or Fachada del Obradoiro) of the Cathedral of Santiago de Compostela are two of the most common Spanish Baroque masterpieces.

The Churrigueresque design in these instances, like in many others, comprises a play of tectonic and ornamental elements with little relation to structure and purpose.

An intricately sculpted surround to a major entryway is the focal point of the florid decoration.

The building’s shape would be unaffected if the elaborate maze of broken pediments, undulating cornices, stucco shells, inverted tapers, and garlands were removed from the fairly simple wall it is placed against.

Baroque Architecture FAQs

What is baroque architecture?

Baroque architecture is a form of architecture that was not well received by the public. It is well known for its dramatic, theatrical elements.

The style of baroque architecture emerged during the 17th century in Rome.

The people that constructed this style of building were trying to recreate the medieval feeling which emphasizes the spiritual nature of the building.

Baroque architecture is typically associated with its use of excessive decoration and glorification, often mixed with drama and towering spires.

What are some examples of Baroque architecture?

Les Invalides, Luxemburg Palace, and, unexpectedly, the Louvre Museum are some of the greatest specimens of Baroque architecture in Paris.

The Louvre museum’s east façade is a perfect mix of French and Italian Baroque styles.

What is the Italian Baroque style?

Exaggerated motion and clear detail are used to create drama, exuberance, and grandeur in sculpture, art, building, literature, dance, and music in the Baroque style.

Baroque iconography was clear, apparent, and dramatic, with an emphasis on the senses and emotions.

What are the features and characteristics of Baroque architecture?

Baroque architecture is a highly ornate and dramatic style that originated in Italy in the early 17th century and expanded throughout Europe.

It was first adopted by the Catholic Church, notably by the Jesuits, as a method of combating the Reformation and the Protestant church with innovative design that generated surprise and awe.

It was most popular during the High Baroque period (1625–1675), when it was employed in churches and palaces throughout Italy, Spain, Portugal, France, Bavaria, and Austria.

It spread as far as Russia and the Spanish and Portuguese territories in Latin America during the Late Baroque era (1675–1750). Beginning around 1730, a more ornately decorated version known as Rococo emerged and prospered in Central Europe.

The essential features of Renaissance architecture, such as domes and colonnades, were elevated, larger, more ornamented, and more dramatic by Baroque architects.

Interior effects were frequently created by the use of quadratura, or trompe-l’oeil painting mixed with sculpture; the eye is attracted upward, creating the appearance of seeing into the sky.

The roof is crammed with carved angels and painted figures. Light was also employed to create drama; it flowed down from cupolas and was reflected by a profusion of gilding.

Twisted columns were also frequently utilized to create the appearance of upward movement, while cartouches and other ornamental embellishments filled every available area.

Grand stairways were a focal point in Baroque palaces.



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