Characteristics of Neoclassical Art

The Neoclassical Period is considered a period of enlightenment. A movement away from the renaissance. The movement started in Europe in the 1700's and spread into the colonies. The focus of this was on government, ethics and science. This differs from the previous period which focused on religion, imagination and emotions. Neoclassicism was a revival of the classical style but with a new perspective. Characteristics of Neoclassical art included a more clean style, sculpted forms, a shallow depth of background and a more realistic approach.

Neo classical art focused more on what was real, rather than idea's like religion that art had revolved around for decades before. The painting above takes place in a war and you can see how the sculptures look more realistic and the mass chaos that the picture shows represents the chaos that would take place in a real war.The painting above shows "preparation for the future" with a girl delivering a baby to two other women. The babies have wings showing that they are the key to our future. The art has a shallow background and a realistic shading/lighting. This is a famous picture from the Neoclassical era.
Famous Neoclassicism Art/Artwork Artwork
This may be one of the most famous paintings from the neoclassical era. It shows the shallow background characteristic very well. The painting is a portrait of two girls, one playing a guitar and the other holding somke sheet music. 10 years earlier this painitng woul have never been thought of. It would have been something religeosly related, but during this neoclassical period people started to paint things like people just doing every day things. Thats why this work is one of the most famous of the era.