The Kennedy Center: Medieval and Renaissance Art - Botanical Symbolism

How was the symbolism of flowers relevant to Medieval and Renaissance art?

For the medieval and the renaissance artists, flowers were part of a rich visual symbolism. In this lesson, students explore how botanical illustrations contribute to the telling of story in a 12th, 13th and 14th century religious painting. Students will learn about these symbolic flowers and discuss their connotations.

The examination of plant representation in illuminated manuscripts, Books of Hours, miniatures, and paintings is used as a means of learning the botanical symbolism, and developing students’ artistic impressions of flowers. Students will also gain knowledge of the science of flowers and their structural qualities.

Science Topics
Music, Art, and Language Arts Topics
Visual Art
Middle School
6th Grade, 7th Grade, 8th Grade

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