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Travel Tip: Art and Archaeology in United States
Byzantium and the West

Saint Mark, Unknown  • Byzantine, Constantinople, about 1300 • Tempera colors and gold leaf on parchment  • 7 9/16 x 5 11/16 in.<BR. • MS. 70, VERSO •  • Photo courtesy of J. Paul Getty Museum •  • 
Saint Mark, Unknown
Byzantine, Constantinople, about 1300
Tempera colors and gold leaf on parchment
7 9/16 x 5 11/16 in.
Photo courtesy of J. Paul Getty Museum
Byzantium and the West
LOS ANGELES  •  J. Paul Getty Museum  •  Ongoing
At its height, the Byzantine Empire (330–1453), whose capital was Constantinople (now Istanbul, Turkey), reached from Italy to central Asia.

The culture of Byzantium was exported to its neighbors by many means. Byzantine paintings, illuminated books, and silk textiles were brought to the West as diplomatic gifts. Byzantine artistic traditions were also transmitted by traveling artists, scholars, and soldiers.

The Crusades of the 11th–13th centuries intensified the contact between Byzantium and the West. Western crusaders passed through the Byzantine Empire on their way to Jerusalem, where they hoped to win the Holy Land from Muslim control. Soldiers, merchants, pilgrims, and travelers commissioned works of art from Byzantine artists and from western artists working in the Byzantine style.

This exhibition explores the influence of Byzantine art on manuscript painting in Germany, Italy, and Armenia.

J. Paul Getty Museum Web Site

Contact: Tel: (1) 310 440 73 00

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