Dictionary of Art and Artists



 

 


History of

Architecture and Sculpture

 
 

 

 
 

 
 

CONTENTS:

 
 

PART ONE
THE ANCIENT WORLD
PREHISTORIC ART
EGYPTIAN ART

ANCIENT NEAR EASTERN ART
AEGEAN ART
GREEK ART
ETRUSCAN ART
ROMAN ART
EARLY CHRISTIAN AND BYZANTINE ART

PART TWO
THE MIDDLE AGES
EARLY MEDIEVAL ART
ROMANESQUE ART
GOTHIC ART

PART THREE
THE RENAISSANCE THROUGH THE ROCOCO
LATE GOTHIC
THE EARLY RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
THE HIGH RENAISSANCE IN ITALY
MANNERISM AND OTHER TRENDS
THE RENAISSANCE IN THE NORTH
THE BAROQUE IN ITALY AND SPAIN
THE BAROQUE IN FLANDERS AND HOLLAND
THE BAROQUE
THE ROCOCO

PART FOUR
THE MODERN WORLD
NEOCLASSICISM AND ROMANTICISM
REALISM AND IMPRESSIONISM
POST-IMPRESSIONISM, SYMBOLISM, AND ART NOUVEAU

PART FIVE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY
TWENTIETH-CENTURY SCULPTURE
TWENTIETH-CENTURY ARCHITECTURE


INDEX
FIGURES
 

 
 

 
 

CHAPTER THREE

GOTHIC ART
 

ARCHITECTURE - Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

SCULPTURE - Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

STAINED GLASS - Part 1, 2

PAINTING - Part 1, 2

 
 


ARCHITECTURE
 


France    



see also:
Architecture in France





AMIENS CATHEDRAL.




457. Amiens Cathedral.



 Amiens Cathedral.


The High Gothic style defined at Chartres reaches its climax a generation later in the interior of Amiens Cathedral (figs.
457 and 458). Breathtaking height becomes the dominant aim, both technically and aesthetically (see fig. 459). The relatively swift progression toward verticality in French Gothic cathedral architecture is clearly seen in figure 461, while figure 462 shows how both height and large expanses of window were achieved. At Amiens, skeletal construction is carried to its most precarious limits. The inner logic of the system forcefully asserts itself in the shape of the vaults, taut and thin as membranes, and in the expanded window area, which now includes the triforium so that the entire wall above the nave arcade becomes a clerestory (fig. 458).
 


458. Amiens Cathedral. Choir and its altar, under the East window
Amiens Cathedral, plan



Transept and north stained glass
459. Transverse section, Amiens Cathedral (after Acland)



457. Choir vault, Amiens Cathedral. Begun 1220



Tympanum of central west portal: Christ in Majesty presides over the Day of Judgement,
supported by an array of saints.

 

 


Amiens Cathedral



Amiens Cathedral, also called Notre-Dame d’Amiens, or the Cathedral of Notre-Dame of Amiens, Gothic cathedral located in the historic city of Amiens, France, in the Somme River valley north of Paris. It is the largest of the three great Gothic cathedrals built in France during the 13th century, and it remains the largest in France. It has an exterior length of 476 feet (145 metres)—23 feet (7 metres) longer than Reims Cathedral and 49 feet (15 metres) longer than Chartres Cathedral—with an interior length of 438 feet (133.5 metres). The soaring nave reaches an elevation of 139 feet (42.3 metres) at the apex of the vault, yet it is only 48 feet (14.6 metres) wide. This 3:1 ratio, made possible by the sophisticated cantilevering of the Rayonnant-style construction, gives the nave a greater verticality and elegance than other cathedrals of the period. The lightness and airiness of the interior is increased by the 66-foot (20-metre) height of the flanking aisles and the open arcades and large windows of the triforium and clerestory. The cathedral’s elaborately decorated exterior has its fullest expression in the double-towered west facade, which is dominated by three deep-set arched portals and a richly carved gallery below the immense rose window (diameter 43 feet [13 metres]).

Amiens Cathedral was commissioned by Bishop Evrard de Fouilloy to replace a smaller church that had burned down in 1218. Construction of the nave began in 1220 under the direction of the architect Robert de Luzarches. The nave and western facade were completed by 1236, and most of the main construction was finished about 1270. Many later additions took place, including the installation of the grand organ in 1549 and the erection of a 367-foot (112-metre) spire during the same century; extensive restoration work was undertaken by the French architect Eugène-Emmanuel Viollet-le-Duc in the 19th century.

The cathedral at Amiens was the site of several noteworthy events, including the marriage of Charles VI to Isabella of Bavaria in 1385. Despite heavy fighting around Amiens during World Wars I and II, the cathedral escaped serious damage. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1981.

Encyclopædia Britannica
 

 




REIMS CATHEDRAL.

 


460. West facade, Reims Cathedral, ń 1225-99


Reims Cathedral, interior



461. Comparison of nave elevations in same scale.
1) Notre-Dame, Paris; 2) Chartres Cathedral; 3) Reims Cathedral; 4) Amiens Cathedral
(after Grodecki)



The same emphasis on vertically and translucency can be traced in the development of the High Gothic facade. The most famous of these, at Reims Cathedral
(fig. 460), makes an instructive contrast with the west facade of Notre-Dame in Paris, even though its basic design was conceived only about 30 years later. Many elements are common to both (as the Coronation Cathedral of the kings of France, Reims was closely linked to Paris), but in the younger structure they have been reshaped into a very different ensemble. The portals, instead of being recessed, are projected forward as gabled porches, with windows in place of tympanums above the doorways.

The gallery of royal statues, which in Paris forms an incisive horizontal band between the first and second stories, has been raised until it merges with the third-story arcade. Every detail except the rose window has become taller and narrower than before. A multitude of pinnacles further accentuates the restless upward-pointing movement. The sculptural decoration, by far the most lavish of its kind (see figs.
489 and 490), no longer remains in clearly marked-off zones. It has now spread to so many hitherto unaccustomed perches, not only on the facade but on the flanks as well, that the exterior of the cathedral begins to look like a dovecote for statues.


West facade, Reims Cathedral



West facade, Reims Cathedral



Reims Cathedral. Exterior view of the chevet

 

 


Reims Cathedral


Reims Cathedral, also called the Cathedral of Notre-Dame at Reims, cathedral located in the city of Reims, France, on the Vesle River east-northeast of Paris. Reims was the site of 25 coronations of the kings of France, from Louis VIII in 1223 to Charles X in 1825, including the crowning of Charles VII in 1429 in the presence of Joan of Arc. The cathedral, which was begun in 1211 under the auspices of Archbishop Aubry de Humbert and designer Jean d’Orbais, was modeled on Chartres Cathedral (begun about 1194) and was intended to replace an earlier church destroyed by fire in 1210. The main construction was overseen by four different architects and lasted some 80 years; expansions and decorative work continued on the church for centuries.

Reims Cathedral incorporated several new architectural techniques, notably bar tracery. It has a total finished length of 489 feet (149.2 metres)—about 26 feet (8 metres) longer than Chartres—with an interior length of 455 feet (138.7 metres) and a nave reaching 377 feet (115 metres). The twin towers in the west facade have a height of 266 feet (81 metres). The chevet (eastern end), with its five relatively large chapels, is nearly the same width as the transept (201 feet [61.3 metres]), giving the cathedral an unusually compact, unified appearance. This unity is emphasized by the use of nearly identical window types in the aisle and clerestory stories, as well as the complementary rose windows in the west facade and central portal and those in the transepts’ facades. Reims is richly decorated with elegant masonry sculpture (particularly the exterior) and exceptional stained-glass windows, making it one of the artistic masterpieces of the French High Gothic period.

The cathedral’s historic site, which was added to the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1991, includes the former Abbey of Saint-Rémi (begun about 1170 and containing the remains of the 5th–6th century archbishop St. Remigius) and the archiepiscopal Tau Palace (reconstructed in the 17th century). Restoration was undertaken in the 20th century after the cathedral was seriously damaged by shelling during World War I.

Encyclopædia Britannica
 

 

 
 

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