Mannerism – an Overview


Period for Mannerism: ca 1520-1600

“The Burial of the Count of Orgaz” by El Greco 1586–1588

Mannerism comes from the Italian word maniere, meaning manner or style and its cradle was in Rome at the end of the Renaissance time period. It is the period bridging the High Renaissance and the Baroque.

The mannerists were influenced by the late works of Raphael and Michelangelo but the style is far off from the harmonious style of the High Renaissance. It’s rather a reaction to the religious, political and social chaos that occurred when Rome was plundered and fell in 1527. The terrified artists fled Rome and Mannerism was spread throughout Italy.

The figures often were depicted stretched or ill-formed with deliberate lack of harmony and proportion with faces that have rich expressions and often look tense.

Mannerist artists: Jacopo Pontormo, Rosso Fiorentino, Tintoretto, El Greco, Pieter Bruegel (the elder), Giuseppe Arcimbildo, Agnolo Bronzino, Girolamo Parmigianino, Hans Holbein, Giorgio Vasari, Antonio Correggio, Nicholas Hilliard, Isaac Oliver, Bartholomeus Spranger


Paintings from the Mannerist era


“The Deposition from the Cross” by Jacopo Pontormo 1528


“Madonna with the Long Neck” by Parmigianino 1534–40


“Vertemnus” by Arcimboldo ca 1590


“Venus Cupid Folly and Time” by Angelo Bronzino ca 1545


“Last Supper” by Tintoretto 1594

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