AP Art History : Renaissance to Contemporary Architecture

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for AP Art History

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Fourteenth Through Sixteenth Century Architecture

The Italian architect and theorist Palladio was instrumental in developing the architectural style known as __________.

Possible Answers:

neo-classicalism

modernism

Baroque

Rococo

Correct answer:

neo-classicalism

Explanation:

Palladio lived and worked around Venice in the mid-sixteenth century, constructing a series of large villas and important buildings. Much of Palladio's work harkened back to styles prominent in Ancient rome, as he created buildings with lots of columns, large colonnades, and domes. His influential architectural textbook, The Four Books of Architecture, helped spread these ideas in the architectural movement known as neo-classicalism.

Example Question #1 : Understanding Terminology That Describes Architecture

In an arch, the central piece of masonry that allows all the pressure to be placed throughout the arch is called __________.

Possible Answers:

the buttress

the keystone

the lintel

the beam

the transverse

Correct answer:

the keystone

Explanation:

An arch is able to remain in its appropriate position because of the way that pressure is placed throughout the entire arch. Pressure can only be appropriately distributed because of the placement of the keystone. The keystone is the central stone in an arch, which is shaped in order to push the weight down through every piece of stone.

Example Question #2 : Fourteenth Through Sixteenth Century Architecture

What technological discovery (or rediscovery) was necessary for the completion of the dome atop Florence's Il Duomo in 1436?

Possible Answers:

Flying Buttresses

Steel support

Concrete

Calculus

Aqueducts

Correct answer:

Concrete

Explanation:

The rediscovery of concrete was the key to completing the dome atop Il Duomo. Filippo Brunelleschi found the lost recipe for concrete, a recipe that was lost in the Middle Ages; prior to the Middle Ages, concrete was used often by the Ancient Romans.

Example Question #3 : Fourteenth Through Sixteenth Century Architecture

The architecture of the Renaissance saw a resurgence of features from the architecture of which ancient civilization?

Possible Answers:

None of these

Ancient Egypt

Mesopotamia

Ancient Sumeria

Ancient Rome

Correct answer:

Ancient Rome

Explanation:

Renaissance architecture made use of attributes of Ancient Roman architecture. Namely, Renaissance architects utilized Ancient Roman column types, such as Doric, Ionic, Tuscan, Composite, and Corinthian, often used decoratively rather than structurally.

Example Question #1 : Understanding Terminology That Describes Fourteenth Through Sixteenth Century Architecture

A _____________ is a wedge-shaped block used in the construction of an arch.

Possible Answers:

lintel

trumeau

archivolt

voussoir

Correct answer:

voussoir

Explanation:

The "voussoir" is a wedge-shaped block that makes up a true arch.

Example Question #4 : Fourteenth Through Sixteenth Century Architecture

A key difference between churches built after the Protestant Reformation and those before the Protestant Reformation in Protestant areas is that __________.

Possible Answers:

the altar becomes a more central part of the church structure

the architectural details are more ornate

there is more division between the spaces for clergy and spaces for congregants

there is less statuary and religious imagery

Correct answer:

there is less statuary and religious imagery

Explanation:

Protestant theology greatly changed church architecture in Northern Europe after the sixteenth century. Catholic churches, even for the tiniest, poorest parishes, featured ornate statuary and imagery before the Reformation. The Protestant-built churches, by contrast, were much less ornate, featuring fewer images, with altars creating less of a barrier between clergy and congregants.

Example Question #4 : Architecture

Who was the Renaissance architect whose guidebook and personal neoclassical style was widely influential during the Enlightenment?

Possible Answers:

Inigo Jones

Christopher Wren

Andrea Palladio

William de Keyser

Leonardo da Vinci

Correct answer:

Andrea Palladio

Explanation:

The Italian architect Andrea Palladio was well known for his own buildings in his native Venice, but gained greater fame for the work of architectural theory he composed in 1570, The Four Books of Architecture. Drawing on Greek and Roman influences, Palladio called for symmetry, domes, columns, and grand spaces. Each of these elements would become hallmarks of neoclassical architecture during the eighteenth century.

Example Question #1 : Analyzing Seventeenth And Eighteenth Century Architecture

Neoclassical architecture sought to revive the style of architecture prevalent in __________.

Possible Answers:

Medieval Germany

Ancient Rome

Byzantium

Ancient Egypt

Correct answer:

Ancient Rome

Explanation:

Neoclassical art and architecture came about in Europe hand in hand with the philosophical era known as the Enlightenment in the eighteenth century. Just as the Enlightenment reacted against Catholic Christianity and embraced reason over emotion, Neoclassical artists sought to go back to antiquity, to a "pre-Christian" era. Thus, Neoclassical architecture brought back the chief elements of Roman architecture, like columns, domes, and collonades.

Example Question #1 : Renaissance To Contemporary Architecture

Stretchers, headers, and soldiers are terms used to describe __________.

Possible Answers:

brickwork

architectural painting

stucco patterns

steel beams

Correct answer:

brickwork

Explanation:

In brickwork, particularly when used in the construction of large buildings; different terms are used to describe how bricks are laid out and how they relate to each other. A stretcher is a brick laid lengthwise, facing out on its larger face, a header is a brick laid with its shorter end facing out on the wall, and a soldier is a brick laid on its small end with its long side facing out.

Example Question #1 : Seventeenth And Eighteenth Century Architecture

300px-ingo_jones_plan_for_a_new_palace_at_whitehall_1638

This design plan is highly representative of the style known as __________.

Possible Answers:

Rococo

Baroque

Neoclassicism

Gothic

Correct answer:

Neoclassicism

Explanation:

Inigo Jones, who drafted this plan for a new Palace at Whitehall, was the first notable English architect, working in the seventeenth century. His greatest contribution to English architecture was to bring Italian ideals of neoclassicism to the British Isles. Neoclassicism's use of perfect symmetry and Greco-Roman aesthetics was a sharp departure from the overly wrought palaces and red brick houses of Tudor England.

Image: Plan for A New Palace at Whitehall by Inigo Jones (1638). <http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ingo_Jones_plan_for_a_new_palace_at_Whitehall_1638.jpg>

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