It is agreed that the Renaissance was a period of great art and architectural feats and ingenuity, during which artists looked back to the classical art of Greece and Rome from which to draw inspiration. This influence can easily be seen in the many paintings and sculpture that came out of the Renaissance. However, the conservative nature of the period, the subject matter, and the restrictions imposed upon artists of that time kept the Renaissance from truly becoming a return to the classics of Greece and Rome.
The most obvious factor in the difference between the two artistic periods is the predominant subject matter the artists of the time chose. In ancient Greece and Rome, the subject matter most popular among artists were depictions of myths, war, or intellectual figures: statues of the gods decorated nearly every significant architectural landmark of the time. Being a Christian society, the art of the Renaissance did not simply depict various bible stories, but also moral stories permeated with religious allusions and symbolism. The Sistine Chapel is just one example among the many depictions of the creation, Madonna figures, and religious icons that existed in that era. However, there were some artists, such as Botticelli who depicted mythological figures as religious icons such as BotticelliÕs Birth of Venus, which put the Greek goddess into a Christian context.
Artists from both periods experienced problem with completing and preserving works. In Ancient Greece and later Rome, because of frequent war and the threat of invasion, many of the bronze sculptures that existed were melted down so that the metal could be used for...