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Intro to the Baroque Art Show


The open for the Rick Steves Art of Europe hour on Baroque and Neoclassical art includes a montage taking you through the highlights of that story from the art of divine kings to revolution and Napoleon.

Complete Video Script

[3A] For two centuries — roughly 1600 to 1800 — Europe's rulers held onto the old medieval order, while new ideas bubbled beneath the surface. These tensions — conservative versus progressive — would produce astonishing art: from deeply religious to boldly secular…from patriotic to playful…from Baroque to Neoclassical.

[4 Montage] For some historic background, we'll start with the religious struggles that eventually split Europe into two camps, each with its own distinct culture: the exuberant art of Catholic elites…and the sober art of Protestant merchants. We'll see how France with its divine-right kings and their art emerged as the center of European culture. And how excessive royal decadence led to violent Revolution…and finally, how a dashing general would set Europe on a bold course toward the future.