21 Top Renaissance Artists And Their Works of Art

The Renaissance produced many great artists throughout Europe. Many of these artists have continued to inspire artists throughout the centuries.

When we speak of top Renaissance artists, we think of the trinity of artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael. But besides these three artists, many other influential Renaissance artists remain essential.

Leonardo da Vinci – A Great Renaissance Artist

Leonardo da Vinci
Birth and Death Dates1452 – 1519
NationalityItalian
Art MovementsHigh Renaissance
Famous ArtworksThe Vitruvian Man (1490)
The Last Supper (1492 – 1498)
Mona Lisa (1503 -1519)
Leonardo da Vinci – A Great Renaissance Artist Information
The Vitruvian Man (1490)
Mona Lisa (1503 -1519)
The Last Supper (1492 – 1498)

At the top of our list is Leonardo da Vinci; he was undoubtedly one of the most critical and significant Renaissance artists. He is one of the most well-known artists.

Top Renaissance Artists Explained
Top Renaissance Artists Explained

Surprisingly Leonardo da Vinci did not paint that many paintings, and he was known to be a notoriously slow painter who would paint for a day and then not show up for days at a time. He was very busy with other things such as studying the human body, philosophy or creating one of his inventions.

His painting, the Mona Lisa (1503-1519), which is at the Lourve in Paris, is today one of the most viewed and well-known paintings. The Last Supper fresco is also one of the most important paintings in the world and many of his sketches and notebooks, such as The Vitruvian Man.

Michelangelo – High Renasiannace Master

Michelangelo
Birth and Death Dates 1475 – 1564
Nationality Italian
Art MovementsHigh Renaissance
Famous Artworks Pieta (1498 – 1499)
David (1501 – 1504)
Sistine Chapel Ceiling (1508 – 1512)
Michelangelo – High Renasiannace Master
David (1501 – 1504)
Pieta (1498 – 1499)

We cannot talk about the renaissance hero without talking about Michelangelo. He proved to be a master of various artistic mediums, including painting and sculpting.

His statue David is considered a Renaissance classic and is regarded as one of the most famous and essential statues of this era. Also, his statue Pieta is considered a very important work, along with his painting of The Sistine Chapel Ceiling (1508-1512).

Raffaello – Sanzio – Raphael – An Important Renaissance Artist

Raffaello Sanzio (Raphael)
Raffaello Sanzio (Raphael)
Birth and Death Dates 1483 – 1520
Nationality Italian
Art Movement High Renaissance
Famous Art WorksSistine Madonna (1513–1514)
Aldobrandini Madonna (1509–1510)
The School of Athens (1509–1511)
Raffaello – Sanzio – Raphael – An Important Renaissance Artist
Aldobrandini Madonna
Aldobrandini Madonna (1509–1510)
Sistine Madonna
Sistine Madonna (1513–1514)
The School of Athens
The School of Athens (1509–1511)

Whenever we talk about the greats of the Renaissance era, Raphael is always mentioned together with Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo; Raphael, Michelangelo, and Leonardo are considered the trinity of the High Renaissance.

Raphael’s work is admired because of its clarity of form, its composition, and how visually appealing it is. He has many masterpieces, but some of our favorites include Aldobrandini Madonna, Sistine Madonna, and The School of Athens.

The sad part about Raphael is that he died much younger (died at age 37) than Leonardo and Michelangelo, so we do not know how much of an artist he could have developed if he had lived to be an older age. But even with his relatively short life, he was a very productive painter and a true high Renaissance master.

Giovanni Bellini – Celebrated For His Use of Natural Light

Giovanni Bellini
Birth and Death Dates 1430 – 1516
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Renaissance
Famous Art Works San Zaccaria Altarpiece (1505)
Christ Blessing (1500)
Madonna and Child (1509)
The Agony of the Garden (1459–1465)
Giovanni Bellini – Celebrated For His Use of Natural Light

The Agony of the Garden (1459–1465)

Giovanni Bellini is considered one of the most influential Venetian Renaissance artists. He lived and worked in Venice for his entire life. Bellini had a long and distinguished career and is known as the artist who introduced the Renaissance style to his native Venice, Italy.

Giovanni is known and celebrated for his style of using natural light. His tender and graceful picture of the Virgin Mary and his many altarpieces are considered Renaissance masterpieces.

Andrea del Verrocchio – Trained Many Important Artists

Andrea del Verrocchio

Birth and Death Dates 1435 to 1488
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Renaissance
Famous Art Works Tobias and the Angel (1470–1480)
Christ and St Thomas (1467–1483)
David (1420s –1500)
Equestrian Statue of Bartolomeo Colleoni (1453)
Andrea del Verrocchio – Trained Many Important Artists

Andrea del Verrocchio was a sculptor, painter, and goldsmith who was also the master of an influential workshop in Florence. Even though he was a painter, he is best known for his sculptures.

Many influential Renaissance artists trained underneath him, including Leonardo da Vinci, Petro Perugino, and Lorenzo di Credit.

The last statue he produced, called the Equestrian Statue of Bartolomeo Colleoni (1453), is considered a masterpiece.

Masaccio – Great Renaissance Artist Who Died Too Young

Masaccio

Birth and Death Dates 1401 – 1428
NationalityItalian
Art Movements Early Renaissance
Famous Art Works Brancacci Chapel (Explosion From the Garden of Eden, Tribute Money) (1425 to 1427)
Pisa Altarpiece (1426)
Holy Trinity (1426-1428)
Masaccio – Great Renaissance Artist Who Died Too Young

Brancacci Chapel (Explosion From the Garden of Eden, Tribute Money) (1425 to 1427)

Masaccio makes our list one of the great Renaissance painters because of his effects on this art movement during his short career. Even though Masaccio died at the very young age of 26, we give him a spot in the top 20 Renaissance artists because of his vast effect on the Renaissance era.

The Holy Trinity fresco painting in the Dominican Church of Santa Maria Novella, Florence, Italy, is the earliest surviving painting to use the systematic linear perspective. According to the records, Masaccio placed a nail at the vanishing point and then used strings to determine how the lines converged.

Paolo Uccello – Artist and Mathematician

Paolo Uccello
Paolo Uccello
Birth and Death Dates 1395 to 1475
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Early Renaissance
Famous Art Works Funerary Monument to Sir John Hawkwood (1463)
Saint George and the Dragon (1470)
The Battle of San Ramano (1432)
Paolo Uccello – Artist and Mathematician

Funerary Monument to Sir John Hawkwood (1463)

Paolo Uccello was an early Renaissance painter; he was an artist and mathematician obsessed with the visual perspective in his art. He would stay up all night studying his interest in perspective and the exact vanishing point.

One of his most important paintings was The Battle of San Romano (1432), where he used a perspective to create a sense of depth for the work. He also set the scene as a kind of theatrical stage.

Piero della Francesca – Renaiaance Mathematician and Geometer

Piero della Francesca
Birth and Death Date1415 to 1492
Nationality Italian
Art Movement Early Renaissance
Famous Art Work The Baptism of Christ (1448–1450)
Flagellation of Christ (1468–1470)
Brera Madonna (1472)
Piero della Francesca – Renaiaance Mathematician and Geometer

Flagellation of Christ (1468–1470)

Piero della Francesca was an Early Renaissance painter who was also a mathematician and geometer. He is an artist known for using geometric forms and perspective.

His work, The Flagellation of Christ (1468 – 1470), is an important early example of the linear perspective in Renaissance art. Many consider this painting an absolute masterpiece of the Early Renannaiance art era.

Antonello da Messina – Introduced Oil Painting

Antonello da Messina
Birth and Death Dates 1430 to 1479
NationalityItalian
Art Movements Early Renaissance
Famous Art Work St Jerome In His Study (1474)
Salting Madonna (1460)
The Virgin Annunciate (1476)
Antonello da Messina – Introduced Oil Painting

Antonella da Messina was a Sicilian painter who was very active in the Early Renaissance era. Some people credit him with the introduction of oil painting to Italy. His artwork was influential for many painters, especially painters in northern Italy and Venice.

In his very complex piece St Jerome In His Study (1474), we can see how he used his knowledge of the human body, natural elements, and the divine to paint this masterpiece. His knowledge of geometry was used to organize this painting and make it a true masterpiece.

Andrea Mantegna – Fascinated By Perspective Of Art

Andrea Mantegna
Birth and Death Date 1431 to 1506
Nationality Italian
Art Movement Renaissance
Famous Art Work Lamentation of Christ (1480)

St. Sebastian (1459 – 1460)
The Agony In The Garden (1458 – 1460)
Andrea Mantegna – Fascinated By Perspective Of Art

St. Sebastian
St. Sebastian (1459 – 1460)

Andrea Mantegna was an Italian painter and also a student of Roman archeology. Like many other artists, he was fascinated with and experimented with perspective in his art. A lot of his paintings have almost a sculptural aspect to them.

In his painting, the Lamentation of Christ (1480), Mary Magdelene is crying over Christ’s body. The exciting part of this painting is the perspective that Andrea Mantegna painted it so that we see Christ’s feet first.

Pietro Perugino – Teacher of Raphael

Pietro Perugino
Birth and Death Dates 1446 to 1523
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Renaissance and High Renaissance
Famous Art Works The Delivery of The Keys (1481–1482)
Pieta (1483–1493)
Madonna and Child Enthroned Between Saint John the Baptist and Sebastian
Pietro Perugino – Teacher of Raphael

Pietro Perugino was the teacher of Raphael; even though Raphael surpassed him, Pietro Perugino made significant contributions to Renaissance art.

The Delivery of the Keys (1481–1482), is located in the Sistine Chapel and is one of his most important works of art. The artwork is an excellent example of Pietro Perugino using a linear perspective to give his background and painting depth.

Sandro Botticelli – Known For Perspectives

Sandro Botticelli
Sandro Botticelli
Birth and Death Dates 1445 to 1510
Nationality Italian
Art MovementEarly Renaissance
Famous Art Works Primavera (1470)
The Birth of Venus (1484–1486)
The Adoration of the Magi (1475)
Sandro Botticelli – Known For Perspectives

Sandro Botticelli was an Italian painter of the Early Renaissance. His painting shows some great examples of the Italian Gothic and Early Renaissance perspectives.

He painted some famous mythological paintings that were considered groundbreaking for art during his lifetime. In his painting, The Birth of Venus (1484–1486), the prominence of the female nude was deemed to be groundbreaking for the early Renaissance.

Giorgione – Emphasized Color

Giorgione
Giorgione
Birth and Death Dates About 1477 to about 1510
Nationality Italian
Art Movements High Renaissance
Famous Art Works The Tempest (1508)
Sleeping Venus (1510)
Castelfranco Madonna (1503 -1504)
The Three Philosophers (1505–1509)
Giorgione – Emphasized Color

Not much is known about the Italian painter Giorgione, except we know that he was a High Renaissance painter who died in his thirties. Only about six paintings have been positively identified as his.

Giorgione was known to have a kind of elusive poetic quality to his work. He was a pioneer painter who began to emphasize color. His painting The Tempest (1508), is an example of this style and use of color where he shows a woman breastfeeding her baby and a soldier watching on while a dark storm is brewing in the background.

Titian – Versatile Italian Renaissance Painter

Titian

Birth and Death Dates About 1488 to 1576
Nationality Italian
Art Movements High Renaissance and Late Renaissance
Famous Art Works Sacred and Profane Love (1514)
The Man With The Quilted Sleeve (1510)
Assumption of the Virgin (1516 – 1518)
Titian – Versatile Italian Renaissance Painter

Titian, also known as Tiziano Vecelli, was a Renaissance artist known to be part of the important Venetian School. He was also one of the most versatile Italian painters who was adept at painting portraits, landscapes, and mythological and religious subjects.

Titan is considered to be a master of color. Sacred and Profane Love, (1514) was one of his earlier paintings commissioned to commemorate a marriage. The work shows how masterful Titan was with the execution of color.

Sebastiano del Piombo – An Underrated Renassiance Artist

 Sebastiano del Piombo
Sebastiano del Piombo

Birth and Death Dates 1485 to 1547
Nationality Italian
Art Movements High Renaissance and Early Mannerism
Famous Art Works Saint Louis at Toulouse (1509)
Salome or Judith (1510)
The Judgement of Solomon (1505–1510)
Sebastiano del Piombo – An Underrated Renassiance Artist

Sebastiano del Piombo is an artist we consider one of the most underrated Renaissance Artists. Early in his career, he showed great promise and pure genius, but suddenly, for no apparent reason, he stopped painting.

His artwork is of the High Renaissance and Early Mannerism movements; his paintings show a lot of incredible sensuality and spirituality. Sebastiano was a rebel at heart and was part of one of the most avant-garde artistic movements of Renaissance Europe.

By clicking here, you can discover more about Sebastiano del Piombo by reading our blog, Who Is The Most Underrated Renaissance Artist?

Fra Angelico – Renaissance Frair Who Painted

Fra Angelico
Birth and Death Dates 1395 to 1455
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Early Renaissance
Famous Art Works Annunciation of Cortona (1433-1434)
Fiesole Altarpiece (1424–1501)
San Marco Altarpiece (1438–1443)
Deposition of Christ (1432–1434)
Niccolini Chapel (1447–1449)
Fra Angelico – Renaissance Frair Who Painted

Niccolini Chapel (1447–1449)

Fra Angelico was an Early Renaissance artist who showed rare and perfect talent. He was known to be a highly talented yet humble artist. He earned his reputation in the frescos he made for his church, the San Marco in Florence, Italy.

Fra Angelico was known for painting a lot of fresco masterpieces. One of them, the San Marco Altarpiece (1438–1443), is a masterpiece of Early Renaissance paintings that used metaphors and perspective, plus a Trompe-l’ceil technique and the intertwining of Dominican religious themes and symbols.

Donatello – Renaissance Sculptor

Donatello

Birth and Death Dates1386 to 1466
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Early Renaissance
Famous Art Works Saint George (1410-1415)
David (1440)
Equestrian Monument of Gattameleta (1453)
Donatello – Renaissance Sculptor

Donatello was a Florentine sculptor from the early Renaissance era. He studied classical sculptors and used his studies to develop the early Renaissance classical style. He was known to work in stone, bronze, wood, clay, stucco, and wax.

Donatello’s David (1440), is one of his most famous statues; it is the first known male nude produced since the Roman Antiquity period. Donatello’s David is also one of the first significant works of Renaissance sculptors.

Filippino Lippi – An Artist With Attention To Detail

Filippino Lippi
Birth and Death Dates 1457 to 1504
Nationality Italian
Art Movements Early Renaissance and High Renaissance
Famous Art WorksVirgin to St. Bernard (1485–1487)
Adoration of Magi (1496)
Allegory of Music (1500)
Mystical Marriage of St. Catherine (1501)
Filippino Lippi – An Artist With Attention To Detail

Filippino Lippi was a painter for both the early Renaissance and the early years of the High Renaissance era. He was also an apprentice of Sandro Botticelli, whose influence we can see in his work.

One of Lippi’s most admired works is the Virgin to St. Bernard (1485–1487). This artwork is admired due to the powerful, Flemish-inspired chromatism and his attention to detail.

Domenico Ghirlandaio – Had An Influential Workshop

Domenico Ghirlandaio
Domenico Ghirlandaio

Birth and Death Dates 1448 to 1494
NationalityItalian
Art Movements Italian Renaissance
Famous Art Works Pope Gregory announces the death of Santa Fina (1477-1478)
The vocation of the Apostles (1481–1482)
Adoration of the Shepherds (1483-1485)
Domenico Ghirlandaio – Had An Influential Workshop

Domenico Ghirlandaio was an Italian Renaissance painter who had a large and efficient workshop in Florence. Many apprentices passed through his workshop, including Michelangelo.

Domenico Ghirlandaio was known for using contemporary life with portraits of contemporary people within a religious narrative; his ability to do this helped bring him a lot of large, lucrative commissions. Ghirlandaio was considered one of the most important painters of his time.

Albrecht Durer – Influential German Renaiaance Artist

Albrecht Durer
Albrecht Durer
Birth and Death Dates 1471 to 1528
Nationality German
Art Movements German Renaissance
Famous Art Works Melencolia I (1514)
Praying Hands (1508)
Adam and Eve (1504)
Albrecht Durer – Influential German Renaiaance Artist

Albrecht Durer was a German painter, printmaker, and theorist of the German Renaissance. Durer established himself throughout Europe due to his high-quality woodcut prints. He was in contact with many of the major Italian artists of his time, including Raphael, Giovanni Bellin, and Leonardo da Vinci.

Durer had a huge influence on many artists of the succeeding generations, particularly in printmaking. He was also very successful in spreading his reputation around Europe, which inspired other artists like Raphael, Titian, and Parmigianino to collaborate with printmakers to promote their works of art.

Lucas Cranach the Elder – German Renaissance Court Painter

Lucas Cranach, The Elder
Birth and Death Dates 1472 to 1553
Nationality German
Art Movements German Renaissance
Famous Art Works Adam and Eve (1526)
Portrait of Martin Luther (1532)
Judgment of Paris
Lucas Cranach the Elder – German Renaissance Court Painter

Judgment of Paris
Judgment of Paris (1528)

Lucas Cranach the Elder was part of the German Renaissance as a painter and printmaker in woodcut and engravings. He was also a court painter to the Electors of Saxony for most of his career. He is well known for his portraits of both German princes and leaders of the Protestant Reformation.

He painted many religious subjects and painted nude subjects from mythology and religion. He was known to be a personal friend of Martin Luther and a supporter of the reformation.

During World War II, the Nazis were fans of Lucas Cranach, the Elder, and looted many of his paintings during the Third Riech.

There were so many great artists during the Renaissance era. Our list only has 21 of them, but we could list many more critical artists. These artists helped change how art was done and have left us with unique masterpieces that we can still appreciate and enjoy.

Anita Louise Art is dedicated to art education, great artists, and inspiring others to find and create their art. We love art that uplifts and inspires. #ArtToMakeYouSmile! #ArtToMakeYouHappy!

If you are interested to see any of my art, you can find out more by clicking here. If you are interested in what inspires me and my paintings, you can discover more by clicking here.

We have a free newsletter and would love you to be part of our community; you can subscribe to the newsletter by clicking here. If you have any questions, I would be happy to talk to you. You can reach me, Anita, by clicking here.

Subscribe to our Anita Louise Art YouTube Channel filled with great videos and information by clicking here.

Join us for our podcast 5 Minutes With Art.” Spend just 5 minutes a week with us to discover and learn about great art and artists. You can find out more about our podcast by clicking here.

What Was The Focus Of Renaissance Art?

The focus of Renaissance art was on the classics of Greek and Rome, humanist philosophy, and the study of the human figure. Realism was also an essential part of renaissance art. The great artists of the Renaissance also became great anatomists and studied human beings.

By clicking here, you can learn more by reading What Was The Focus Of Renaissance Art?.

What Is The Importance Of Art From The Renaissance Period?

Renaissance art is essential as it was a time of rebirth and discovery. Artists like Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Raphael were at the forefront of that change, creation, and discovery. Renaissance art has influenced art and artists for many centuries and continues to influence artists today.

By clicking here, you can learn more by reading What Is The Importance Of Art From The Renaissance Period?.

Did Leonardo da Vinci Believe In God?

Leonardo did not tell us what his belief in God was, but there is evidence that is left that suggests that he held fast to many Christian ideals and beliefs. People such as the artist and author Giorgio Vasari, who knew him and wrote about him, spoke of his character and what a great man he was.

By clicking here, you can learn more by reading Did Leonardo da Vinci Believe In God?.

Anita Louise Hummel

Hi, I am Anita Louise Hummel. I am an artist and a blogger. I paint mainly oil paints. I love to paint women, animals (mainly dogs and cats), and abstracts. I use a lot of gold and silver leaf in my paintings. I also love to blog about anything to do with art, business, Procreate, and all the wonderful artists that inspire me.

Recent Posts

21 Top Renaissance  Artists And Their Works of Art