By John C. van Dyke
John Charles van Dyke (1856-1932) used to be an American artwork historian and critic. He used to be born at New Brunswick, N. J., studied at Columbia, and for a few years in Europe. together with his publication chronicling the background of portray from cave work to the fashionable period. totally illustrated.
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Extra resources for A Text-Book of the History of Painting (Illustrated Edition)
They began, not by rejecting it, but by improving it, giving it slight movements here and there, turning the head, throwing out a hand, or shifting the folds of drapery. The Eastern type was still seen in the long pathetic face, oblique eyes, green flesh tints, stiff robes, thin fingers, and absence of feet; but the painters now began to modify and enliven it. More realistic Italian faces were introduced, architectural and landscape backgrounds encroached upon the Byzantine gold grounds, even portraiture was taken up.
NOVELLA, FLORENCE. -1337), was a great improver on all his predecessors because he was a man of extraordinary genius. He would have been great in any time, and yet he was not great enough to throw off wholly the Byzantine traditions. He tried to do it. He studied nature in a general way, changed the type of face somewhat by making the jaw squarer, and gave it expression and nobility. To the figure he gave more motion, dramatic gesture, life. The drapery was cast in broader, simpler masses, with some regard for line, and the form and movement of the body were somewhat emphasized through it.
The cause was neglect of form, neglect of art as art, mechanical copying instead of nature study, and finally, the predominance of the religious idea over the forms of nature. With Constantine Christianity was recognized as the national religion. Christian art came out of the Catacombs and began to show itself in illuminations, mosaics, and church decorations. Notwithstanding it was now free from restraint it did not improve. Church traditions prevailed, sentiment bordered upon sentimentality, and the technic of painting passed from bad to worse.