Introduction | Sculpture | Painting | Literature | Bibliography


St Martin, St Jerome and St Gregory in Chartres Cathedral looking very lifelike.The sculptures of the Gothic period, beginning with St. Denis and Chartres Romanesque sculpture at Vezelay. Where is the realism?Cathedral soon after was very different from the world of Gislebertus and Romanesque sculpture of earlier times. Though the sculpture is still part of the architecture, it feels like it could stand alone. Instead of having thousands of the same, emotionless face, cathedrals were now decorated with believable and sensual carvings. Older Romanesque sculptures would be grotesquely stretched to accommodate jambes and pillars, and this is lost as we move into the Gothic style. Sculpture still portrays religious meaning, but it becomes less symbolic and more conveyed through true emotion and realism. Saints interacting with eachother became a more common theme than inhuman demons clutching at sinful human forms. The quasi-relief style of old is no more, and bending, swaying, smiling, talking new figures are the new style of sculpture in the Middle Ages.