The epicentre of Renaissance art was Florence. The Renaissance period began in the late 1300s and early 1400s when the Ottoman Empire conquered Constantinople. This event resulted in many scholars and artists moving to Florence and bringing with them ideas about classical culture that were dormant in Europe. Another important societal change that occurred was the emergence of the middle class.
During the Middle Ages, the church and the ruling classes were the ones to summon artists to create art. Both the church and the government had their agendas. They wanted to convert people to religion and become faithful believers. One of the goals of art during that time was to explain to people what faith was about, which is why most art pieces from the Middle Ages focused on the Bible, stories from the Bible, and religious figures.
This situation changed significantly in the 1400s when wealthy professionals such as lawyers, bankers and merchants started commissioning art. They were interested not only in religious subjects but also in the world around them. This was one of the catalysts to the Renaissance. It forced artists to explore the world, new subjects and different styles of art.