Over thousands of years, art has evolved and changed. Each period of art defined every era and created historically works.

Prehistoric Era
Art in the prehistoric era consisted of Cave Art (30000-10000 BC) of food and people from the Paleolithic peoples that featured. From Cave Art came the Mesolithic period (10000-8000 BC) with more abstract paintings on rocks, then Neolithic age (8000-3000 BC) and Ethnographic Art. Now that there was more agriculture during this period, they had more tools for measuring and writing to paint more food and animals.

Ancient and Classical Civilization Eras
The Ancient Civilizations of Mesopotamia (3500-331 BC), Egypt (3200-1340 BC), and The Aegean (30000-1100 BC) each had their brand of art. In Mesopotamia, there were many temples and sculptures of gods from Sumerians, victory stele from Akkadians and the Babylonians, and sculptures and ancient architecture from the Assyrians. Egyptian art is famously known for their decorated tombs, pyramids, and colorful paintings of their gods. The Aegean brought Greece’s marble idols and open architecture.

When examining the Classical Civilizations, the Greeks later evolved their painting, sculptures, and ceramics into much more detailed and decorated pieces of art. Over in Italy, the Etruscans embraced the Bronze Age in their sculptures, tombs, and sarcophagi. The Romans then attempted to leave behind the Etruscans art and created their style that focused on power.

Middle Ages
The Middle Ages (1st century- 1600) is the era of religious art such as early Christian Art and Byzantine Art. Early Christian art was all about building churches and mosaics. There was then a small shift to Byzantine Art which focused mostly on abstract and symbolic in their paintings and churches. Then came the Islamic Art and Migration Art. These art periods mostly featured very decorative and portable pieces due to the many wars.

There also came the Carolingian period, the Ottonian period, Romanesque Art, and Gothic Art. There were many uses of precious stones in the Carolingian period, metalwork in the Ottonian period, and the invention of the barrel vault during the Romanesque art period. Gothic art finished off the Middle Ages with large cathedrals and decorative stained-glass.

The Renaissance
The Renaissance (1400-1880) was the period of rebirth, which reflected greatly in the art.  First came Italian art which featured very individualized paintings and sculptures. Artists began to question what art was and breaking the “rules” of art. The High Renaissance period brought historically famous artists such as Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Raphael, while the Mannerism period featured artists following their style of art and technical manner.

Baroque Art brought human emotion and new scientific understandings. This was followed by the Rococo period which featured many over-the-top and embellished pieces of art. In the Neoclassicism vs. Romanticism period, art relied on the classics for Neoclassicism while Romanticism defied the classics. Realism produced art that worked with light and color, often involving social causes. The Renaissance was then completed with the Impressionism, where art became free and an impression. With the end of Impressionism, everyone accepted that art should not have restrictions and made art what it has become today.

About The Author
Anatoly Vanetik is an Entrepreneur, Businessman, and Art History Enthusiast in Orange County, California. Anatoly’s accomplished and diverse professional background has helped him become known as an elite venture capitalist and businessman. In recent years, Anatoly has focused on his passions, which include animal welfare and art history. As part of his commitment to share his insight, Anatoly Vanetik created a monthly blog on animal welfare, as well as a monthly blog on art history.

Follow Anatoly Vantik on Twitter.