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Mannerism is a period of European art that emerged from the later years of the Italian High Renaissance around

1520. It lasted until about 1580 in Italy, when the Baroque style began to replace it, but Northern Mannerism continued into the early 17th century.[1]

Stylistically, Mannerism encompasses a variety of approaches influenced by, and reacting to, the harmonious ideals associated with artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, and early Michelangelo. While High Renaissance explored harmonious ideals, Mannerism wanted to go a step further.[2] Mannerism is notable for its intellectual sophistication as well as its artificial (as opposed to naturalistic) qualities.[3] Mannerism favours compositional tension and instability rather than the balance and clarity of earlier Renaissance painting. Mannerism in literature and music is notable for its highly florid style and intellectual sophistication.[4]

The definition of Mannerism, and the phases within it, continues to be the subject of debate among art historians. For example, some scholars have applied the label to certain early modern forms of literature (especially poetry) and music of the 16th and 17th centuries. The term is also used to refer to some Late Gothic painters working in northern Europe from about 1500 to 1530, especially the Antwerp Manneristsa group unrelated to the Italian movement. Mannerism also has been applied by analogy to the Silver Age of Latin literature. The word mannerism derives from the Italian maniera, meaning "style" or "manner". Like the English word "style", maniera can either indicate a specific type of style (a beautiful style, an abrasive style) or indicate an absolute that needs no qualification (someone "has style").[5] In the second edition of his Lives of the Most Excellent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects (1568), Giorgio Vasari used maniera in three different contexts: to discuss an artist's manner or method of working; to describe a personal or group style, such as the term maniera greca to refer to the Byzantine style or simply to the maniera of Michelangelo; and to affirm a positive judgment of artistic quality.[6] Vasari was also a Mannerist artist, and he described the period in which he worked as "la maniera moderna", or the "modern style" By the end of the High Renaissance, young artists experienced a crisis.[2] It looked like everything that could be achieved was already achieved. No more difficulties, technical or otherwise, remained to be solved. The detailed knowledge of anatomy, light, physiognomy and the way in which humans register emotion in expression and gesture, the innovative use of the human form in figurative composition, the use of the subtle gradation of tone, all were near perfection. The young artists needed to find a new goal, and were looking for new approaches. This was the moment when Mannerism started to develop.[2] Depending on the historical account you credit, Mannerism developed between 1510 and 1520 in either Florence,[12] Rome, or both cities simultaneously.[13] Origins and role models[edit source | editbeta]

Giorgio Vasari, Lives of the Most Eminent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects This period has been described as a 'natural extension'[4] of the art of Andrea del Sarto, Michelangelo, and Raphael.

Michelangelo from early age has developed a style of his own, a deeply original style which was greatly admired first, than often copied and imitated by his fellow artists of his time.[4] One of the qualities most admired by his contemporaries was his terribilit, a sense of awe-inspiring grandeur, and it was the attempts of subsequent artists to imitate.[4] Michelangelo's impassioned and highly personal style was thus learned by the other artists copying the works of the master, learning by copying was a standard way that students learn to paint and sculpt. His Sistine Chapel ceiling provided examples for other artists to follow, in particular the figures of ignudi and of the Libyan Sibyl, his vestibule to the Laurentian Library, in the figures on his Medici tombs, and above all in his Last Judgment. The later Michelangelo was one of the great role model[4] of Mannerism. This was noticed by Michelangelo himself who might have been annoyed sometimes by this. Young artist broke in into the house of Michelangelo and stole drawings from him.[14] In his book Lives of the Most Eminent Painters, Sculptors, and Architects, Giorgio Vasari noted that Michelangelo stated once: Those who are followers can never pass by whom they follow. Early mannerism[edit source | editbeta]

Jacopo Pontormo, Entombment, 1528; Santa Felicit, Florence The early Mannerists in Florenceespecially the students of Andrea del Sarto: Jacopo da Pontormo and Rosso Fiorentinoare notable for elongated forms, precariously balanced poses, a collapsed perspective, irrational settings, and theatrical lighting. Parmigianino (a student of Correggio) and Giulio Romano (Raphaels head assistant) were moving in similarly stylized aesthetic directions in Rome. These artists had matured under the influence of the High Renaissance, and their style has been characterized as a reaction or exaggerated extension of it. Instead of studying nature directly, younger artists began studying Hellenistic sculpture and paintings of masters past. Therefore, this style is often identified as "anti-classical,*15+ yet at the time it was considered a natural progression from the High Renaissance. The earliest experimental phase of Mannerism, known for its "anticlassical" forms, lasted until about 1540 or 1550.[13][page needed] Marcia B. Hall, professor of art history at Temple University, notes in her book After Raphael that Raphael's premature death marked the beginning of Mannerism in Rome. The group of words with the root "Roman" in the various European languages, such as romance and Romanesque, has a complicated history, but by the middle of the 18th century "romantic" in English and romantique in French were both in common use as adjectives of praise for natural phenomena such as views and sunsets, in a sense close to modern English usage but without the implied sexual element. The application of the term to literature first became common in Germany, where the circle around the Schlegel brothers, critics August and Friedrich, began to speak of romantische Poesie ("romantic poetry") in the 1790s, contrasting it with "classic" but in terms of spirit rather than merely dating. Friedrich Schlegel wrote in his Dialogue on Poetry (1800), "I seek and find the romantic among the older moderns, in Shakespeare, in Cervantes, in Italian poetry, in that age of chivalry, love and fable, from which the phenomenon and the word itself are derived."[17] In both French and German the closeness of the adjective to roman, meaning the fairly new literary form of the novel, had some effect on the sense of the word in those languages. The use of the word did not become general very quickly, and was probably spread more widely in France by its persistent use by Madame de Stal in her De L'Allemagne (1813), recounting her travels in Germany.[18] In England

Wordsworth wrote in a preface to his poems of 1815 of the "romantic harp" and "classic lyre",[18] but in 1820 Byron could still write, perhaps slightly disingenuously, "I perceive that in Germany, as well as in Italy, there is a great struggle about what they call "Classical" and "Romantic", terms which were not subjects of classification in England, at least when I left it four or five years ago".[19] It is only from the 1820s that Romanticism certainly knew itself by its name, and in 1824 the Acadmie franaise took the wholly ineffective step of issuing a decree condemning it in literature.[20]