1.Visit the Washington National Cathedral Website, www.nationalcatehdral.og
and view the below youtube videos before answering the questions.
Compare and Contrast the exterior architecture of the National Cathedral to one example from our course. Why do you think the Gothic style was chosen for this national cathedral? There are many interesting aspects to the cathedral, including its utilization of the same essential building materials and technologies of Gothic architects and engineers being constructed entirely with Masonry and load bearing walls. How effective is the iconography at conveying the stories of our nation? Is the inclusion of Darth Vader as a gargoyle sculpture a document of our culture, or pandering to populist tastes?
2.Romanesque religious art has been described as scaring Christians into behaving well, while much Gothic art is seen as approachable and intimate. Use examples to agree or disagree with the above statement. In your opinion, which artistic style was more effective? Explain your answer.
3.Abbott Suger believed in the symbolic value of colored light. Is light still considered symbolic? Offer an example of a symbolic use of white or colored light and compare it to light in Gothic churches. Paintings use the principle of absorption and reflection of light, where stained glass allows a specific wavelength of light to pass through generating the brilliant color. How does the use of light as an artistic medium alter our experience? How is Gothic use of light similar and different from the use of light in Byzantine Art?
4.Compare and contrast a Gothic cathedral to a Romanesque church. Use the below questions and video to assist you. What is generally believed to have been the purpose of the sculptural programs of the portals of the great Gothic cathedrals? How did these programs differ from the sculptural programs of Romanesque portals? Use examples to support your essay. Explain why Romanesque sculpture is described as “fearsome” and Gothic as “kind”. What role did politics and economics play in the creation of Gothic churches and in the spread of the Gothic style throughout Europe?
5.Trace the changes visible in the treatment of the human figure from the beginning of the Gothic era to the late fourteenth century in both painting and sculpture. Cite specific examples in your answer.
6.Pick a single object from the chapter as the best example that defines Gothic Art and explain your choice.