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Home / Old Masters: Distinguished European artists from 1300 to 1800

Old Masters: Distinguished European artists from 1300 to 1800

All distinguished European artists from 1300 to 1800 are generally classified as old masters. These include artists starting from the Early Renaissance to the Romantic movement. Frescos and oil paintings were the most frequently produced art mediums. However, prints and drawings are also essential to the old masters’ art portfolio.

Due to the wide range of artwork in this particular category, there are countless debates with inconclusive outcomes regarding which period or art mediums are to be specifically labelled as “old masters.” In most cases, old masters are recognized for their creativity, innovation, and style. The realistic landscapes and figures represented a believable proportion and perspective for the audience. But quality is a defining characteristic that defines which artists can or cannot be classified as old masters.

Expulsion from the Garden of Eden by Masaccio is a famous old masters fresco located in the Church of Santa Maria Novella, Florence, Italy. And then there’s Mona Lisa, by Leonardo da Vinci at the Louvre Museum in Paris.

Old masters’ artwork holds an intrinsic value solely from the period the pieces were created in. They allow us to connect with the past, to a world we have only heard of, and not yet seen.

Old master’s art depicts the cultures of an era gone by. The detail and the materials used showcase a well-rounded picture of the occurrence of past events, people, and perspectives.

Old master’s artwork is a hub of knowledge and inspiration for the artists of the modern world. The famous pieces are well preserved for the world to see. Referring to the works of old masters is also considered an excellent technique for learning and promoting art.


ARTIST: Masaccio, Leonardo da Vinci

GENRE: Christian Art, Portrait

FINE ART MOVEMENT: Early Renaissance, Renaissance

PERIOD: 15th-century

CONSERVATION: Church of Santa Maria Novella, Florence, Italy, Louvre Museum, Paris.