The Early Renaissance was the first phase of the Renaissance and is dated roughly from 1420 to 1500. It first began in Italy in the early 15th century and showed related phenomena in the rest of Europe, e.g. in Old Netherlandish painting. In Italy, we speak of the Quattrocento. The Early Renaissance was followed by the High Renaissance.
The Early Renaissance followed the Gothic period and draws its inspiration from various sources. The beginnings of Renaissance thought and feeling are closely connected with Renaissance humanism and can be traced back to Petrarch and Boccaccio.
An essential criterion was the orientation of art on the model of nature. An essential means to this end was central perspective in painting, for which mathematical laws were formulated for the first time, and the revival of ancient art. The Christian symbolism of the Gothic period still largely determined the purpose and character of the works, but since the invention of central perspective by Filippo Brunelleschi and Leon Battista Alberti, the closeness to reality now also gained decisive importance for many paintings.