What is the Trecento in art?

The term “trecento” known also as Italian for “three hundred” is the abbreviation for “milletrecento” and describes the 14th century. You may check Youtube downloader to know more about Trecento.

Since the Trecento coincides with this art epoch in Italy, the term is often used synonymously in art for all of the art of the Proto-Renaissance. Seen in this way, the Trecento in art can be described as the century in which art built the decisive bridge from the medieval Gothic to the early Renaissance.

Painting of the Trecento

Although Giotto’s new form of naturalism became the main style of Renaissance art in the 15th century, the Byzantine conception of art taught in the city of Siena was the predominant form of expression even in the 14th century and remained so for most of the century.

Nevertheless, it was Giotto who, with his frescoes in the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua, was the first to suggest a stylistic shift. As a masterpiece of religious art, these images abandoned the flat style conventions of Byzantine art in favor of a higher naturalism.

It was later taken up and further developed by artists of the early Renaissance such as Masaccio and Leonardo da Vinci.

Sculpture of the Trecento

The forefather of the Italian Renaissance sculpture of the 14th century was the artist Giovanni Pisano, who modeled a Madonna and Child for the Scrovegni Chapel in Padua, while Giotto painted there in 1305.

He had a great influence on another important sculptor of this century: Andrea Pisano. As a forerunner of the courtly artistic style of the international Gothic, he was also influenced by Giotto, after whose death in 1337 Andrea Pisano succeeded him as the chief architect of the Cathedral of Florence.

The leading Venetian sculptor and architect was Filippo Calendario, who directed the reconstruction of the 14th-century Doge’s Palace before he was sentenced to death for high treason.

Architecture in 14th century Europe

While the Gothic architecture was formative in Northern Europe into the 16th century, it was replaced in Italy in the 15th century by always independent Renaissance designs.

However, little major architectural work took place during the Trecento. The reasons for this are not fully understood, with the spread of the Black Death and the Hundred Years War between France and England playing their part.

Two exceptions were the Palazzo Vecchio in Florence and the Piazza Della Signoria, which were completed around 1330.