Cityscape

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The Dam Square in Amsterdam, by Gerrit Adriaensz Berckheyde, c. 1660. The Dam in Amsterdam, by Gerrit Adriaensz Berckheyde.jpg
The Dam Square in Amsterdam, by Gerrit Adriaensz Berckheyde, c. 1660.
Dresden, Germany in the 1890s Dresden photochrom2.jpg
Dresden, Germany in the 1890s
Houses of Parliament, Sunset, 1902, by Claude Monet Monet Houses of Parliament, Sunset.jpg
Houses of Parliament, Sunset, 1902, by Claude Monet
Cityscape of New York in the 1980s. Collage by Tom Sulcer circa 1970s.JPG
Cityscape of New York in the 1980s.

In the visual arts a cityscape (urban landscape) is an artistic representation, such as a painting, drawing, print or photograph, of the physical aspects of a city or urban area. It is the urban equivalent of a landscape. Townscape is roughly synonymous with cityscape, though it implies the same difference in urban size and density (and even modernity) implicit in the difference between the words city and town. In urban design the terms refer to the configuration of built forms and interstitial space.

Visual arts art forms that create works that are primarily visual in nature

The visual arts are art forms such as ceramics, drawing, painting, sculpture, printmaking, design, crafts, photography, video, filmmaking, and architecture. Many artistic disciplines involve aspects of the visual arts as well as arts of other types. Also included within the visual arts are the applied arts such as industrial design, graphic design, fashion design, interior design and decorative art.

Painting practice of applying paint, pigment, color or other medium to a surface

Painting is the practice of applying paint, pigment, color or other medium to a solid surface. The medium is commonly applied to the base with a brush, but other implements, such as knives, sponges, and airbrushes, can be used. The final work is also called a painting.

Drawing visual artwork in two-dimensional medium

Drawing is a form of visual art in which a person uses various drawing instruments to mark paper or another two-dimensional medium. Instruments include graphite pencils, pen and ink, various kinds of paints, inked brushes, colored pencils, crayons, charcoal, chalk, pastels, various kinds of erasers, markers, styluses, and various metals. Digital drawing is the act of using a computer to draw. Common methods of digital drawing include a stylus or finger on a touchscreen device, stylus- or finger-to-touchpad, or in some cases, a mouse. There are many digital art programs and devices.

Contents

History of cityscapes in art

From the first century A.D. dates a fresco at the Baths of Trajan in Rome depicting a bird's eye view of an ancient city. [1] In the Middle Ages, cityscapes appeared as a background for portraits and biblical themes. From the 16th up to the 18th century numerous copperplate prints and etchings were made showing cities in bird's eye view. The function of these prints was to provide a map-like overview.

Fresco Mural painting upon freshly laid lime plaster

Fresco is a technique of mural painting executed upon freshly laid, or wet lime plaster. Water is used as the vehicle for the dry-powder pigment to merge with the plaster, and with the setting of the plaster, the painting becomes an integral part of the wall. The word fresco is derived from the Italian adjective fresco meaning "fresh", and may thus be contrasted with fresco-secco or secco mural painting techniques, which are applied to dried plaster, to supplement painting in fresco. The fresco technique has been employed since antiquity and is closely associated with Italian Renaissance painting.

Baths of Trajan

The Baths of Trajan were a massive thermae, a bathing and leisure complex, built in ancient Rome starting from 104 AD and dedicated during the Kalends of July in 109. Commissioned by Emperor Trajan, the complex of baths occupied space on the southern side of the Oppian Hill on the outskirts of what was then the main developed area of the city, although still inside the boundary of the Servian Wall. The architect of the complex is said to be Apollodorus of Damascus. The baths were being utilized mainly as a recreational and social center by Roman citizens, both men and women, as late as the early 5th century. The complex seems to have been deserted soon afterwards as a cemetery dated to the 5th century has been found in front of the northeastern exedra. The baths were thus no longer in use at the time of the siege of Rome by the Ostrogoths in 537; with the destruction of the Roman aqueducts, all thermae were abandoned, as was the whole of the now-waterless Mons Oppius. Early Christian writers misnamed the remains the 'Baths of Domitian'.

Rome Capital city and comune in Italy

Rome is the capital city and a special comune of Italy. Rome also serves as the capital of the Lazio region. With 2,872,800 residents in 1,285 km2 (496.1 sq mi), it is also the country's most populated comune. It is the fourth most populous city in the European Union by population within city limits. It is the centre of the Metropolitan City of Rome, which has a population of 4,355,725 residents, thus making it the most populous metropolitan city in Italy. Rome is located in the central-western portion of the Italian Peninsula, within Lazio (Latium), along the shores of the Tiber. The Vatican City is an independent country inside the city boundaries of Rome, the only existing example of a country within a city: for this reason Rome has been often defined as capital of two states.

Halfway the 17th century the cityscape became an independent genre in the Netherlands. In his famous View of Delft in 1660–1661 Jan Vermeer painted a quite accurate portrait of the city Delft. Cities like Amsterdam, Haarlem and The Hague also became popular subjects for paintings. Painters from other European countries (i.e., Great Britain, France, Germany) followed the Dutch example. The 18th century was a flourishing period for cityscape painting in Venice (Canaletto, Guardi).

Netherlands Constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Europe

The Netherlands is a country located mainly in Northwestern Europe. The European portion of the Netherlands consists of twelve separate provinces that border Germany to the east, Belgium to the south, and the North Sea to the northwest, with maritime borders in the North Sea with Belgium, Germany and the United Kingdom. Together with three island territories in the Caribbean Sea—Bonaire, Sint Eustatius and Saba— it forms a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The official language is Dutch, but a secondary official language in the province of Friesland is West Frisian.

Delft City and municipality in South Holland, Netherlands

Delft is a city and municipality in the province of South Holland, Netherlands. It is located between Rotterdam, to the southeast, and The Hague, to the northwest. Together with them, it is part of both Rotterdam–The Hague metropolitan area and the Randstad.

Amsterdam Capital of the Netherlands

Amsterdam is the capital city and most populous municipality of the Netherlands. Its status as the capital is mandated by the Constitution of the Netherlands, although it is not the seat of the government, which is The Hague. Amsterdam has a population of 854,047 within the city proper, 1,357,675 in the urban area and 2,410,960 in the metropolitan area. The city is located in the province of North Holland in the west of the country but is not its capital, which is Haarlem. The Amsterdam metropolitan area comprises much of the northern part of the Randstad, one of the larger conurbations in Europe, which has a population of approximately 8.1 million.

At the end of the 19th century the impressionists focused on the atmosphere and dynamics of everyday life in the city. Suburban and industrial areas, building sites and railway yards also became subjects for cityscapes. During the 20th century attention became focused on abstract and conceptual art, and thus the production of cityscapes declined. American painter Edward Hopper, who stayed loyal to figurative painting, created intriguing images of the American scene. With a revival of figurative art at the end of the 20th century comes a revaluation of the cityscape. Well-known living cityscape painters are Rackstraw Downes, Antonio López García, and Richard Estes. American artist Yvonne Jacquette has made a specialty of aerial cityscapes. Stephen Wiltshire, a London born artist with autism, is known for his panoramic cityscape renderings composed from memory, usually after taking a short overhead view of the city he is about to draw. [2]

Everyday life routine processes in humans daily and weekly cycle

Everyday life, daily life or routine life comprises the ways in which people typically act, think, and feel on a daily basis. Everyday life may be described as mundane, routine, natural, habitual, or normal.

Rail yard location for storing and sorting railroad cars

A rail yard, railway yard or railroad yard is a complex series of railroad tracks for storing, sorting, or loading and unloading, railroad cars and locomotives. Railroad yards have many tracks in parallel for keeping rolling stock stored off the mainline, so that they do not obstruct the flow of traffic. Railroad cars are moved around by specially designed yard switchers, a type of locomotive. Cars in a railroad yard may be sorted by numerous categories, including railroad company, loaded or unloaded, destination, car type, or whether they need repairs. Railroad yards are normally built where there is a need to store cars while they are not being loaded or unloaded, or are waiting to be assembled into trains. Large yards may have a tower to control operations.

Abstract art art with a degree of independence from visual references in the world

Abstract art uses a visual language of shape, form, color and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world. Western art had been, from the Renaissance up to the middle of the 19th century, underpinned by the logic of perspective and an attempt to reproduce an illusion of visible reality. The arts of cultures other than the European had become accessible and showed alternative ways of describing visual experience to the artist. By the end of the 19th century many artists felt a need to create a new kind of art which would encompass the fundamental changes taking place in technology, science and philosophy. The sources from which individual artists drew their theoretical arguments were diverse, and reflected the social and intellectual preoccupations in all areas of Western culture at that time.

Selected cityscape painters

Alexander Beggrov Russian landscape painter

Alexander Karlovich Beggrov was a Russian landscape and marine art painter of Baltic German origin, notable for his seascapes and Saint Petersburg cityscapes.

Bernardo Bellotto Italian artist

Bernardo Bellotto,, was an Italian urban landscape painter or vedutista, and printmaker in etching famous for his vedute of European cities. He was the pupil and nephew of the famous Giovanni Antonio Canal Canaletto and sometimes used the latter's illustrious name, signing himself as Bernardo Canaletto. In Germany and Poland, Bellotto called himself by his uncle's name, Canaletto.

Johann Henrik Carl Berthelsen was an American Impressionist painter, as well as having a career as a professional singer and voice teacher. Essentially self-taught as an artist, he is best known for his poetic paintings of New York City, often in snow.

Francesco Guardi Italian painter

Francesco Lazzaro Guardi was an Italian painter of veduta, nobleman, and a member of the Venetian School. He is considered to be among the last practitioners, along with his brothers, of the classic Venetian school of painting.

Childe Hassam American painter

Frederick Childe Hassam was an American Impressionist painter, noted for his urban and coastal scenes. Along with Mary Cassatt and John Henry Twachtman, Hassam was instrumental in promulgating Impressionism to American collectors, dealers, and museums. He produced over 3,000 paintings, oils, watercolors, etchings, and lithographs over the course of his career, and was an influential American artist of the early 20th century.

Jan van der Heyden painter from the Northern Netherlands

Jan van der Heyden was a Dutch Baroque-era painter, glass painter, draughtsman and printmaker. Van der Heyden was one of the first Dutch painters to specialize in townscapes and became one of the leading architectural painters of the Dutch Golden Age. He painted a number of still lifes in the beginning and at the end of his career.

See also

Commons-logo.svg Media related to Cityscape paintings at Wikimedia Commons

Related Research Articles

History of painting

The history of painting reaches back in time to artifacts from pre-historic humans, and spans all cultures. It represents a continuous, though periodically disrupted, tradition from Antiquity. Across cultures, and spanning continents and millennia, the history of painting is an ongoing river of creativity, that continues into the 21st century. Until the early 20th century it relied primarily on representational, religious and classical motifs, after which time more purely abstract and conceptual approaches gained favor.

Old Master skilled painter

In art history, "Old Master" refers to any painter of skill who worked in Europe before about 1800, or a painting by such an artist. An "old master print" is an original print made by an artist in the same period. The term "old master drawing" is used in the same way.

Stephen Wiltshire Architectural artist

Stephen Wiltshire is a British architectural artist and autistic savant. He is known for his ability to draw from memory a landscape after seeing it just once. His work has gained worldwide popularity.

Roman art the visual arts made in Ancient Rome and in the territories of the Roman Empire

Roman art refers to the visual arts made in Ancient Rome and in the territories of the Roman Empire. Roman art includes architecture, painting, sculpture and mosaic work. Luxury objects in metal-work, gem engraving, ivory carvings, and glass are sometimes considered in modern terms to be minor forms of Roman art, although this would not necessarily have been the case for contemporaries. Sculpture was perhaps considered as the highest form of art by Romans, but figure painting was also very highly regarded. The two forms have had very contrasting rates of survival, with a very large body of sculpture surviving from about the 1st century BC onward, though very little from before, but very little painting at all remains, and probably nothing that a contemporary would have considered to be of the highest quality.

Landscape painting genre of paintings; field of work for artists

Landscape painting, also known as landscape art, is the depiction of landscapes in art – natural scenery such as mountains, valleys, trees, rivers, and forests, especially where the main subject is a wide view – with its elements arranged into a coherent composition. In other works, landscape backgrounds for figures can still form an important part of the work. Sky is almost always included in the view, and weather is often an element of the composition. Detailed landscapes as a distinct subject are not found in all artistic traditions, and develop when there is already a sophisticated tradition of representing other subjects.

Jan Siberechts Flemish landscape painter

Jan Siberechts (1627–1703) was a Flemish landscape painter who after a successful career in Antwerp, emigrated in the latter part of his life to England. In his early works, he developed a personal style of landscape painting, with an emphasis on the Flemish countryside and country life. His later landscapes painted in England retained their Flemish character by representing a universal theme. Siberechts also painted hunting scenes for his English patrons. The topographical views he created in England stand at the beginning of the English landscape tradition.

<i>Veduta</i> genre of large-scale vista or cityscape

A veduta is a highly detailed, usually large-scale painting or, more often print, of a cityscape or some other vista. The painters of vedute are referred to as vedutisti.

Dutch Golden Age painting

Dutch Golden Age painting is the painting of the Dutch Golden Age, a period in Dutch history roughly spanning the 17th century, during and after the later part of the Eighty Years' War (1568–1648) for Dutch independence.

National Roman Museum museum in Rome, Italy

The National Roman Museum is a museum, with several branches in separate buildings throughout the city of Rome, Italy. It shows exhibits from the pre- and early history of Rome, with a focus on archaeological findings from the period of Ancient Rome.

Leonaert Bramer painter from the Northern Netherlands

Leonaert Bramer, also Leendert or Leonard, was a Dutch painter known primarily for genre, religious, and history paintings. Very prolific as a painter and draftsman, he is noted especially for nocturnal scenes which show a penchant for exotic details of costume and setting. He also painted frescos—a rarity north of the Alps—which have not survived, as well as murals on canvas, few of which are extant. Bramer is one of the most intriguing personalities in seventeenth-century Dutch art.

Florentine painting

Florentine painting or the Florentine School refers to artists in, from, or influenced by the naturalistic style developed in Florence in the 14th century, largely through the efforts of Giotto di Bondone, and in the 15th century the leading school of Western painting. Some of the best known painters of the earlier Florentine School are Fra Angelico, Botticelli, Filippo Lippi, the Ghirlandaio family, Masolino, and Masaccio.

Guild of Saint Luke type of artist collective, usually a guild including artist-related professions, such as art teachers and art appraisers

The Guild of Saint Luke was the most common name for a city guild for painters and other artists in early modern Europe, especially in the Low Countries. They were named in honor of the Evangelist Luke, the patron saint of artists, who was identified by John of Damascus as having painted the Virgin's portrait.

Italian Renaissance painting art movement

Italian Renaissance painting is the painting of the period beginning in the late 13th century and flourishing from the early 15th to late 16th centuries, occurring in the Italian peninsula, which was at that time divided into many political states, some independent but others controlled by external powers. The painters of Renaissance Italy, although often attached to particular courts and with loyalties to particular towns, nonetheless wandered the length and breadth of Italy, often occupying a diplomatic status and disseminating artistic and philosophical ideas.

Matthias Withoos painter from the Northern Netherlands

Matthias Withoos (1627–1703), also known as Calzetta Bianca and Calzetti, was a Dutch painter of still lifes and city scenes, best known for the details of insects, reptiles and undergrowth in the foreground of his pictures.

National Gallery of Armenia art gallery in Yerevan, Armenia

The National Gallery of Armenia is the largest art museum in Armenia. Located on Yerevan's Republic Square, the museum has one of the most prominent locations in the Armenian capital. The NGA houses significant collections of Russian and Western European art, and the world's largest collection of Armenian art. The museum had 65,000 visitors in 2005.

Marine art form of figurative art that portrays or draws its main inspiration from the sea

Marine art or maritime art is any form of figurative art that portrays or draws its main inspiration from the sea. Maritime painting is a genre that depicts ships and the sea—a genre particularly strong from the 17th to 19th centuries. In practice the term often covers art showing shipping on rivers and estuaries, beach scenes and all art showing boats, without any rigid distinction - for practical reasons subjects that can be drawn or painted from dry land in fact feature strongly in the genre. Strictly speaking "maritime art" should always include some element of human seafaring, whereas "marine art" would also include pure seascapes with no human element, though this distinction may not be observed in practice.

Lodewijk Toeput painter

Lodewijk Toeput, called il Pozzoserrato was a Flemish landscape painter and draftsman active in Italy. He is mainly known for his canvases and frescoes of landscapes and formal gardens with banquets and music-making groups. His landscapes had an important influence on the next generation of Flemish landscape artists such as Joos de Momper, Tobias Verhaecht and Gillis and Frederik van Valckenborch.

Jacopo Ripanda Italian painter

Jacopo Ripanda was an Italian painter of the Renaissance era.

Alessandro Salucci Italian painter (1590-1655)

Alessandro Salucci was an Italian painter who played an important role in the development of the genre of cityscapes (vedute) of Rome. He created capricci, i.e. imaginary architectural perspectives and harbour views, in which the figures were often executed by another artist.

References

  1. Eugenio la Rocca: "The Newly Discovered City Fresco from Trajan's Baths, Rome." Imago Mundi Vol. 53 (2001), pp. 121–124.
  2. "Autistic artist Stephen Wiltshire draws spellbinding 18ft picture of New York from memory... after a 20-minute helicopter ride over city". Daily Mail. London. 2009-10-29. Retrieved 2010-02-25.