The Rebirth of Art
The Renaissance is my favorite period of artwork, because of the entire re-birth of culture and education throughout Europe. Much of the artwork is symbolic and meaningful, having the artist taking great detail in his work. A lot of the paintings were either religous, or based on the important subjects of the time. This was due to how artwork was commisioned, or how the artist was paid for their work. The Church was responsible for spending a lot of it's money to produce masterpieces of art, in order to show the people who attended Church just how awe-inspiring these religious images, and sculptures actually were.
To me, this painting above: "The school of Athens" by Raphael, is a prime example that embodies the whole Renaissance movement, because it contains many historical figures throughout time in one place, representing philosophy, mathmatics, astronomy, painting, sculpting, literature, etc. showing just how powerful knowledge can be. I think it is very interesting how paintings reflect this time period, and how people went out of their way for the sake of learning.