NOTE: This clip contains a segment on fourteenth-century art and its creative processes. Sculptures of the human body (and their descriptions) may be offensive to some people, especially children. Proceed with caution.
The Pope opens a significant line of credit, with the Medici bank, resulting in huge wealth for Cosimo and his family. Wealth, for ts own sake, has never been enough for Cosimo, however.
He sees money as a tool, with which he can hire the best artists and craftsmen anywhere. Depending on how it is used, Medici wealth can transform mere money into prestige.
Medici art patronage, thus, becomes a political strategy - a key fact leading to an explosion of art development unequaled (at the time) anywhere else in Europe.
Artists, during the early Renaissance, needed patrons (like Cosimo de Medici) because there was no wider art market. People did not go to art galleries, to purchase paintings, like they do today. Cosimo understood that - and he also understood that artists needed time to themselves, away from the demand of their work.
Allowing artists freedom, to create works of beauty on their own terms, pays-off extremely well for Cosimo and everyone else in Florence. He even overlooks the violent temper of a sculptor like Donnatello (who creates a bronze statue of David).
One of Cosimo's artists - the dome-creating architect, Filippo Brunelleschi - continues to blaze new trails. In 1434, he unveils a radically new technique which will change the world of art forever. For the first time, a Western artist incorporates linear perspective into his paintings, imitating the appearance of the natural world.
NOTE: The musical work, beginning at about 0:50 into the clip, is "Ameno," by Era.
Clip from "Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance," Episode 1 - "Birth of a Dynasty." Online, courtesy PBS. Copyright, PBS, all rights reserved. Clip provided here as fair use for educational purposes and to acquaint new viewers with the program.