Description of the The School of Athens by Raphael

Essay by emmajaneCollege, Undergraduate November 2004

download word file, 4 pages 5.0

Downloaded 44 times

The School of Athens by Raphael is a complex painting with a fascinating composition. The subjects, building, composition and his use of color make it a compelling piece. This painting is extremely decorative and complex. With various tools, Raphael was able to emphasize different aspects and pull the viewer into the work. Because of the colors used in the painting, and the setting, this painting seems to be of religious or educated figures.

This painting has many subjects, most of which appear to be male. Knowing that most renaissance paintings have both genders, one would conclude that there are a few females. All of the subjects are wearing colorful, flowing robes. The fact that they have colorful clothing on symbolizes a high rank. This rank is either of the church or of land. The highly crafted building the subjects are in leads the viewer to think that the rank is from the church or education.

In the middle, the subjects are surrounding two men. Everyone seems to be listening to the men. The men in the bottom left are reading or writing, what could be the primary men's words. The ones in the bottom right are surrounding a board on the floor and could be discussing the words of the men. With all of the conversing going on, and the layout of the people, one would assume that this is a lecture setting. This story is going on in a large, ornate, arched-ceiling building.

This building is painted from top to bottom. The main arch in the front has a very geometric pattern on it but the column connecting it to the ground is flowery. There is gold on the ceiling, on the decorative pieces between each painting. The top-left corner has a large rock painted on a background of...