In 1401, the guild of wool merchants in Florence, the Arte di Calimala, announced a competition for a second set of doors for the Baptistery of San Giovanni, located in front of the Florence Cathedral. Two surviving competition panels, one by Filippo Brunelleschi and the other by Lorenzo Ghiberti, exhibit dramatically different styles and compositions although both were based on the same subject—Abraham’s sacrifice of his son, Isaac. While we know that Ghiberti was eventually awarded the commission, Brunelleschi’s biographer claimed that the competition ended with a tie, and that when the committee decided to split the commission, Brunelleschi withdrew.
Look at both of the competition panels and think about which panel you consider to be the strongest. As you consider which one you think should have been awarded the commission, consider the composition as a whole, as well as each artist’s individual style.
Basing your argument on the existing competition panels, write an essay in which you make a case for the competition panel that you think should have won, persuading the reader why the chosen artist should have been given the commission. Include specific details to support your opinion and convince the reader that your position is correct. In making your case, you must also address strengths and weaknesses of the other artist.
To help ensure the auto-feedback system will function properly, your response must contain a minimum of 100 words and a maximum of 1000 words, though individual prompts or your instructor may provide a more precise target range for word count. Your response will be automatically reviewed by the system, and you will receive your grade after your instructor reviews and returns the scores. Your response should not contain in-text parenthetical citations or other special headers or formatting.
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