Romanesque Art


What Is Romanesque Art?

Romanesque art

The Romanesque art definition can be sculpted by the idea of a melding of traditional artistic genre styles including Roman, Carolingian, Ottonian, Byzantine, and Germanic. Though the art periods’ most focused and notable progress took place in France, the Romanesque art style was prominent throughout Europe.

When Did the Romanesque Art Period Begin?

To answer the question of when was the Romanesque period can be identified by the height of the Romanesque exposition, which was 1075 to 1125 throughout the countries of France, Italy, Britain, and Germany. The intensity of the Romanesque period dates stands at the time Europe regained stability after the fall of the Roman Empire. With new expectations from the country and its people, the demand for larger churches from by monastic order was submitted.

Romanesque Art Characteristics

In order to fulfill such a requirement, the Romanesque art and architecture of the churches were shaped by specific details of the adjustment. For instance; the “Roman” semicircular arch was crafted for windows, doors, and roof-supporting vaults for the church architecture, and the enlargement to extensive piers and walls with few windows. The characteristics of the Romanesque style churches continued to be developed as the artistic style entered more into both art and artistic architecture. As for the churches, a standard Romanesque church consisted also of having side aisles with galleries above, a large tower over the crossing of the nave, and at the western end of the church would be smaller towers.

Romanesque art period

As the Romanesque art style overlayed throughout Europe in the period of the early centuries, the genre became more prominent in its sculpture evidence as well. Keeping form and distinction within the church atmosphere, Romanesque art sculpture work found its way evident into the architecture of the church itself. Restored after 600 years of complacency, the sculpture products of the Romanesque genre were brought alive again to represent biblical meaning. Used to portray the history of the biblical sense, these sculptures were constructed into the foundation of the church itself. Seen atop columns and framing the massive doors and archways within the churches, the Romanesque sculpture held a purpose of physical imagery for the believers of the time. The Romanesque art characteristics that involved those of the sculptures, were those of rather a stylistic freedom. Compared to the known and practiced tradition and heritage related artistically designed, these sculptures served as an inspiration for the combination of religion and a newly profound style of sculpture.

This idea of freedom within the Romanesque art and architecture allowed for the aesthetic of natural objects to be formed into a type of distortion, or an unknown, from the familial vision of image work. With this idea of a natural-take on such mystical and fantasized beliefs, the Romanesque art period revealed a shift in the progress of interweaving the constitution with the illusion. Thus, this entire idea of transformation with marriage and paring to a new craft can be referred to as a Romanesque style definition.

Romanesque Art Examples

Bibles (Manuscript)

In particular the Psalter (e.g. St. Albans Psalter, Hunterian Psalter, Winchester Bible).

Wall paintings

Though most have been destroyed through time and lack of care, some walls of work that are notable to the Romanesque period include:

  • The Life of St. Eldrad (Turin, Italy)
  • Apse of Sant Climent de Tauell (Barcelona, Spain)


The most prioritized and renownedly identified with the Romanesque art period are the churches that came from the art and architecture of the artistic era. There are numerous churches that standstill throughout the lands of Europe, but some of the most celebrated are:

  • Cattedrale di Pisa (Italy);
  • Basilique Saint-Sernin de Toulouse (France);
  • Speyer Cathedral (Germany);
  • Vezelay Abbey (France);
  • Durham Cathedral (England).
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