Baroque Transition from the Cathedral Through Patronage to the Living Room and Museum

I have struggled finding a way to proceed with a humanities presentation of Bible art after the Baroque period largely because, although there was still art made for the Chapel and the Cathedral, through patronage, and then through developing marketing and services, public art, particularly the religious art, its production diminished in the Baroque to a more decorative function rather than incorporation into public buildings and structures. Frankly, no one, certainly not I, can say it more articulately, with more depth, or with greater graphic skills than  Dr. Beth Harris and Dr. Stephen Zucker in their video discussions on Smarthistory.

They provide a video discussion of the contrasting art styles and religious settings of two Baroque painters in the area of the Netherlands which is dramatic and expressive;  they also address this transition from the cathedral, through patronage , to movable art to be hung in patrons’ homes or even in a church, but not integrated into the structure and design of the church.  Finally, they discuss the Catholic orientation of Peter Paul Rubens’ painting of Elevation of the Cross  compared to the Protestant orientation of Rembrandt’s Anatomy Lesson of Dr. Tulp .  That is accessible at

You will also see that the Smarthistory web page at  is organized by stylistic period, time, style, artist, and  themes.  They have, as we have seen, some wonderful resources on materials that we have already discussed.  I very much appreciate that in this profit-oriented society people such as  Sal Khan, Dr. Beth Harris and Dr. Stephen Zucker, and others associated with Khan Academy and Smarthistory, are so willing to share there knowledge and their passion with any in the public who have the desire to learn and and experience it.


Links to my site:


Graphic Arts




Home Page

We will see where this goes from here. If there are any suggestions out there, feel free to share them.


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