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Europe of the Capitals, 1600-1700
 0302000925, 9780302000922

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ART IDEAS

HISTORY

THE EUROPE OF THE CAPITALS i6oO'iyoo GIULIO CARLO ARGAN

TRANSLATED FROM THE ITALIAN BY ANTHONY RHODES *

The quotations on pages 37, 38 and 43 from Lewis Mumford, "The Culture of Cities," 1938, are printed by permission of the publisher, Harcourt, Brace and World, Inc., New York *

©

1964 by Editions d'Art Albert Skira, Geneva Library of Congress Catalog Card Number: 64-23257 * Distributed in the United States by

THE WORLD PUBLISHING COMPANY 2231 West iioth Street, Cleveland * Printed in Switzerland

2,

Ohio

CONTENTS

I

THE BAROQUE AGE The Baroque

1

Form and Image

14

The Function of Images

21

Poetics and Rhetoric

31

The

34

State 1.

and the Capital City

The

Capital City

37

The Monument 2. The Monument

45

49

The Monumental

37

Imagination and Illusion

68

Imagination and Feeling

71

3.

The Emotions

73

Persuasion and Devotion

81

Rhetoric and Classicism

94

Rhetoric and Architecture

104

The Fa9ade

107

4.

Technique 5. Technique

122 125

Notes on the Plates

....

18, 25, 29, 61, 65, 84, 85, 91, 99, loi, 115,

119

II

THE WORLD STAGE The General and

the Particular

135

Space and Things

148

The

150

Portrait 6.

The

Portrait

153

Landscape 7.

170

Drawing and Engraving

Genre Painting Still

192

202

Life

Teaching and Educating

Notes on the Plates

173

....

214 139, 145, 162, 163, 181, 183, 187, 195, 207, 212

Index of Artists

217

List of Illustrations

219

I

THE BAROQUE AGE

THE BAROQUE

^The meaning of the word Baroque is still question. When Benedetto Croce wrote

an open a

great

"History of the Baroque Age," he included in the

term every manifestation of seventeenth-century

life,

was therefore a tendency

irrationalism itself

or to exteriorize

itself,

to display

minimizing the

tradi-

and excluding all values which cannot be conveyed through the senses. tional prestige of abstract thought,

morals, religion, politics, literature, figurative art;

Here

judgment of them all was unfavorable. The Baroque epoch, he said, in Italy at least, was one in which false values reigned: cerebral, moralizing, affected, and over-emphatic. For Eugenio D'Ors, however, the Baroque age was the expression of a category of the mind, of a vital Dionysian and irrational impulse. In spite of their contradiction, both

can translate everything into images which catch and

of these views reveal that

seventeenth century was, on the contrary, a century

and

at

his

impossible to separate,

period of history, the various forms of

that

culture

it is

from the

life

which people then

lived.

Whe-

art possesses a special importance, because

delight the eye.

therefore right to seek in art

It is

the most authentic and complete expression of a civilization

which greatly enlarged the horizon of

reality, setting scarcely

any limits to the

mean

perception. This does not all

activities

own

had

its

every

own

discipline,

activities

For the

human

sphere of action and developed

methods. Art too became specialized, and

never aspired to be anything more than

which all intellectual exerted on everyday life. There can be no

art.

every

the age, which seems to have dominated the whole to the influence

values and

all

its

was due

of visual

field

had to be expressed through

of specialization; activity,

that

ther real or assumed, the irrational character of

century,

it

considered in relation to the whole

art.

field

But now, of

human

endeavor, the function of art was to translate every-

doubt that the culture of the seventeenth century was irrational; but it was consciously irrational, always controlled and deliberate. It came neither

thing into images, and to exploit the concrete value

from a profound vital impulse, as D'Ors contends, nor was it false and artificial, as Croce regards it. Today we know that the structure of modern society has its foundations in Baroque culture, which would hardly be the case if the Baroque age had been one of

and But

decadence, nor vitality

if it

had been

of the image as a means of increasing man's awareness of the visible world. Science, religion, politics daily

life

provided the "raw materials" of

art.

means of deepening and enriching our sense of life, art became autonomous, and its task was to give expression to what was most vital and most as a

characteristic in the culture of the time.

a return to the elemental

of primitive society. Clearly the

men

of

this

period turned from one kind of rationality, from

The word Baroque was

applied to the art of the

seventeenth century by the theorists and

critics

of

work out another

the following century, the century of rationalism and,

might be called. Man's behavior was no longer motivated by natural forces or divine revelation, but by his peculiar situa-

in art, of Neoclassicism. Because the Renaissance

"natural reason," and sought to

kind, an "artificial reason," as

tion

as

"artificial

a

social

animal.

it

We may

describe

this

reason" which replaces "natural reason"

was an age

which "natural reason" triumphed, we may describe the Baroque as an irrational transition period between two rational periods. Here we

may be

in

over-simplifying, for there are deep diffe-

as "social reason."

rences between the rationalism of the Renaissance

Although extended to all forms of life, the term Baroque applies above all to art, as a tangible manifestation of the movement, rhythm and values of life.

and that of the eighteenth century. The age of reason does not mark the beginning of a fresh inquiry; it did little more than try and put some order into the huge mass of contradictory experiences of the preceding century. The eighteenth century was an

The

chief

characteristic

of

seventeenth-century

age of criticism, but the object of the criticism was the rich and disorderly fund of experience bequeathed

by the seventeenth century. This is a further argument against the view that the Baroque period was one of decadence, or even of interruption. The seventeenth century was but the inevitable phase of transition during which one form of rationalism changed, to reappear in another form. It was then, for the first time, that men became aware of many of the problems which, in the centuries to come, developed into important issues.

presented as a fact in

itself,

ed in

believed that the world manifest-

completely logical structure the supreme

its

rationalism of the Creator.

By knowing

nature

man man

knew simultaneously God and himself, because is made in the image of God; and the behavior of man,

his

moral conduct, depends on his knowledge

of the eternal truth hidden beneath the changing

conveyed by his senses. Eighteenth-century thinkers, however, took a very

and

endowed with

and an attraction which are quite new. They are no longer the different signs of a unique a presence

order, but a very varied whole, very

much

alive

with

which the human spirit must now find a correlation, even if this is forced upon it by the social system. But this correlation is not necessarily logical or causal. We understand from it why the seventeenth-century artists showed such curiosity in the singularity and diversity of phenomena, but were so hesitant about their meaning. Each artist materials for

attempts to establish

The Renaissance

limited but

it

personally, until perhaps he

comes to realize that it does not exist absolutely, and that the recording of these phenomena by the human spirit is of value above all for establishing certain points of agreement which will permit men of the same time and place, taking part in the same historical situation, to is

to say to

understand one another, that

communicate with one another.

illusory appearances

The age of reason no longer admitted or a priori truth. The world is, and can-

At the

origin of the radical transformation which

man and

different view.

the relations of

any revealed

the seventeenth century,

not help being, the object of

human thought; but

gious

crisis

the universe underwent in

we must mention

of the sixteenth century, no

the

less

reli-

impor-

we know nothing of its real structure and form, all we can do is to examine and analyze the thought processes from which we derive our knowledge of

tant in this respect than the Cartesian revolution or,

the physical world, and to ensure that our thought

examination of the doctrinal reasons which distin-

since

follows a rational method. But

how

can this be done

no a priori rational principle? Because we cannot judge on premises, we judge on results. A good result, or only a useful one, is the fruit of right methods. Judgment is therefore the criticism of the means employed for obtaining a certain effect.

if there is

In the second half of the sixteenth century, the idea that

human

reason was created on the model of a

which expressed itself equally in created nature and in the dogmatic revelation of the scriptures, lost favor. This idea had stated that rational truth and revealed truth were identical in their essence, if not in their development. All phenomena had until now been part and parcel of a structure which identified them with a divine revelation.

divine

logic,

The disappearance of this structure gave back to the phenomena their multiplicity and their limitless diversity. Autonomy succeeds subordination, and the law which united all these autonomous facts is no longer considered as a divine law a priori, but the structure of the human spirit which perceives them and co-ordinates them. Every phenomenon is now

domain, the appearance of Copernicus and GaUleo. Without becoming involved in an in the scientific

guish the two religious currents of the period,

we

can see that religious unity no longer existed, and that

man found

himself before an alternative, forced

between two theological doctrines but two codes of behavior. It was a question of a moral choice, and the natural order of creation, if one admits that one still believes in the existence of a system in nature, is of no help. All interest is now concentrated on the problem of human existence, its end and its destiny; for if salvation by grace is hazardous, salvation by works has no less its problems and its difficulties. to choose not only

The phenomena which arise

at the

essence of these

problems do not belong so much to nature as to man's Ufe and, because such is his lot, to the condi-

The phenomena of nature, numberless and of many kinds, are no more than the setting, the surroundings in which human existence takes place. The question of conduct then appears much more important than that of human nature, tions of his

and

as

social

fife

in society.

conduct only takes on

meaning in the sphere, everything bearing on society and its its full

methods of organization becomes an essential preoccupation. The schism which separated the Christian religion into two antagonistic groups, that of the Reformation and that of the Catholic Church, brings with

the idea of salvation or condemnation,

it

on the choice that the individual makes. It also presents the problem of a faith and a social behavior. The Reformed Church limited individual autonomy by countermanding the principle of free choice, while the Catholic Church saw in the faith and a cult appealing to the masses the best method of avoiding heresy. In one case, as in the other, however, religion was more concerned with directing man's choice and behavior than in considering and describing the providential logic both

collective,

at the heart

first

of the universe.

two camps

the

dependent

The controversy caused

to discover arguments suitable for

directing this choice and for preventing defection.

much more

It is

important under such conditions

to persuade than to demonstrate.

In the absence of a single principle or model

phenomena, we may conclude that the activities of the mind are also of various kinds. The field of demonstrable truth goes no further than the limits of science; morals are no longer founded on ontological truth. As for art, which reposes on the principle of imitation, we no longer know what controlling

it is

all

supposed to imitate, although

that there are

we may

many ways of doing

journey together, science and

it.

recognize

After a long

art separate.

For Piero

were one thing; for Leonardo, science and painting followed parallel and distinct roads. But between the science of Galileo and the art of his time, there was no longer any relation, and Galileo considered art in a critical way, della Francesca, science

from In its

and

art

outside.

fact,

the

principle)

more science declared that its aim (not was truth, the more art became aware

that

only possible aim was

its

speak of fiction, and condemn if there

is

no

fiction.

ascertainable truth? Is not scientific

moment when

hypothesis a fiction until the verified?

be

May

verified,

But may one

as morally negative,

it

not

fictive

it

is

hypotheses exist which can

not by demonstration of a logical kind,

but by an image? Fiction has no doubt a certain value; but what value? Let us take an example.

We

all

see that the sun turns

around the

earth,

and

and yet science tells us that it is the earth which turns around the sun, and that the water of the sea is colorless. But in our daily life we continue to measure time according to the movement of the sun from the east to the west; and when that the sea

we

is

blue,

see a blue stretch of water before us,

of the

we

think

The appearance of things is responsible ideas, and we do not feel the need in our life to correct them according to the

sea.

for these practical

lessons of science. Existence

not entirely specu-

is

lative,

appearances have also their value; and

them.

We know

we

use

that they are not exact representa-

tions of what happens in the universe, but

we cannot

deny that they too are phenomena, and phenomena which impinge on the human mind and have an influence on our behavior. Previously,

value was only attached to images

which corresponded

unchanging forms of reality. Now all the images which crowded into the mind, whether transmitted by the senses from the exterior to

world or produced by the imagination, unquestionably possessed a real value. It even began to be doubted whether there are such things as images which contain an absolute content of truth. In the Renaissance, the pictures of a Bosch or a Bruegel

seemed to be freaks of the imagination, dreams. In the seventeenth century, pictures which were equally remote from ordinary visual experience appeared perfectly plausible, or as

more or

less real creations

at least acceptable

of the imagination.

FORM AND IMAGE

The seventeenth century marks

the beginning of an

age which has been aptly described as the

civiliza-

and which is none other than our modern civilization. Between the Baroque and the Renaissance, which was the last civilization of form, lies Mannerism which is distinguished by a crisis of form. Neoclassicism, which followed the Baroque, tried to confer a rational order on the image, but the image was never again to find the logical structure or intellectual content of form as the representation of a positive conception of the world. tion of the image,

allowed only one alternative: to carry the quest of the Idea to

its

logical conclusion, to the "sublime,"

back on the experience of nature and of history (Michelangelo), or instead to renounce every turning

its

a priori ideal, to refuse every principle of authority, to select the

way of methodical doubt, of

experience which

analytical

is

direct

and unprejudiced by

phenomena (Leonardo). The Venetian

attitude, in

the case of Bellini and Giorgione, developed with a

continually widening experience of nature and the

human

which was not always justified, but was lively, full

soul, in a "discourse"

logical or historically

Baroque was a reaction against the distortion of form systematically practised by the Mannerists. Its intention, however, was not to restore the absolute and universal value of form, but to affirm openly the autonomous and intrinsic value of the image. To the theorists of the seventeenth century, it was clear

attempted a synthesis of these different tendencies in

that the "genius" peculiar to the artist

a

is

imagination,

from the one which produces concepts and notions, and even from that combined activity of the intellect and the imagination which, during the Renaissance, produced with equal ease tangible forms and abstract concepts. a faculty clearly distinct

To understand the scope of this transformation we must go back to the end of the fifteenth century, when the Roman Church ended its schisms and placed

its

authority

on

the principle of historic anti-

of emotion, intense, capable of expressing in subtlety the deepest levels of

At

form which was unitary, syncretistic, universal. This man, whose art was purely classical, regarded nature and history, together, as expressions of divine providence, just as idea and experience are two ways, which are not contradictory, of recognizing the Creator in the creature and of making man's thought and action depend on the eternal logic of God. Dogma is a truth of faith, but founded on the logic of nature and history. It does not therefore limit "worldly" existence. In

all

the forms of the tangible

which

form of the world, is precisely the tangible and formal revelation of dogma. reveals the essential

The Roman Church, festation of

in

make

Florentine

position

visible its

pletely

its

role as the visible mani-

God's presence on

purity of the formal structure in Mantegna, clearly

The

but

with the whole gamut of tangible appearances. Art,

spectacular evidence of

polarity.

;

dogma without form would not be a revealed dogma, which would be absurd. The absolute and universal character of dogma makes it co-extensive

continuity of line and color in Botticelli, and the

this

way, Raphael did not

up in a form tending to the univerthe emotion of Venetian color. Dogma as a

revelation contains

represent

this

hesitate to gather

and dogmatic truth. This identity was understood and developed in different ways. In Florence, where the dominant culture was Neoplatonic, faith and intellect were identified in a common aspiration to transcend the experience of history and nature, and attain supreme truth in the Idea. In Padua, where the dominant culture was Aristotelian, the essential value was experience of nature and history, as a rev-

The rhythmic

feeling (Titian,

the beginning of the sixteenth century Raphael

sal all

elation in time of the divine logos.

their

Tintoretto, Veronese).

quity, thereby identifying rational truth, historical truth,

human

all

reveahng

own it,

its

earth,

own

needed

rites, in

art as

order to

essence to the faithful, com-

and to demonstrate that nature

and history, which are expressions of the will of God, reflect its logic. The artist is he who shows this formal logic to man and, because Divine Creation is a perfectly finished achievement, artistic form is a closed system of parts which are in equilibrium or exact

relation.

Bramante's

project

for

the

new

Basilica of St Peter's, the temple symbolizing the

union of all Christians,

a

is

system of parts in perfect

form which displays the equilibrium of the universe by its volumes where mass and space compensate one another, and at the same time a historical form, because it reunites and combines the two classical types of architecture, the Constantinian basilica and the Pantheon. But it is also a logical form, because its masses and its spaces have an almost syllogistic relation to one another, a relation of cause and effiect. equilibrium;

it

therefore a natural

is

Soon however the and

of this syncretism of logic

crisis

Already in the case of Leonardo

faith appears.

nature does not have a logical form. It

constant structure;

even

less, a

without a

not a closed system nor,

is

it

is

revealed truth.

To know

nature,

it is

and abandon all dogmatic prejudices. Knowledge of nature can be of value in necessary to study

it

closely

worldly existence, but not for saving one's soul.

For Giorgione nature hidden meanings.

way

—by

It

is

a factual reaUty, but full of

can only be understood in one

becoming one with

mystery of the soul

as

it,

and feeling the

an aspect of the mystery of

For Titian both history and nature present the same dramatic intensity of lively forces and contrasts. In his case emotion replies immediately to the sudden appearance of the phenomenon. nature.

Michelangelo prefers

faith to experience, first aban-

doning the experience of nature, and then of history: the end is a direct and personal meeting with God (it was well known that he was in contact with the

Roman

circles

of the "Catholic Reform" of Juan de

which can change

in

its

accidental

and exterior

appearance but remain unchanged in substance.

God

is

an idea, an incorporeal

image which

is

beyond matter and the physical world.

Mannerism was born with Michelangelo. From the outset it was an art which felt no need to imitate nature; or, more precisely, an art which set out to be a mimesis not of nature but of ideas. It may seem strange that the Mannerist crisis of form at the end of the sixteenth century was accompanied by extreme formalism. What happened was that form became hampered by "rules," and in this way lost its rational structure,

its

intellectual

or learned content,

power of demonstration. Form ceased

its

form because it refused totally to be a world form; it no longer formed experience and survived itself as a simple image. If form always reveals the presence of the real, which it professes to represent, the image, with its power of simple evocation, denotes its absence and retains only the fleeting shadow. Form renews itself continually, because it is born from an intuition or discovery of the real the image is transmitted, and with it is transmitted the memory of ancient meanings, to which new ones are added. But, having no intellectual substance, it changes through an uninterrupted play of analogies, associations, combinations, contaminations, only bowing to occasional exigencies. A good example of this is the contaminatio of the classical divinities Hermes and Athena, described by Cartari as Hermathena, and represented by Zuccari at Caprarola as a synthesis combining the ideas of theory (Athena) and practice to be

;

(Hermes).

From

this capacity for the

combination

and proliferation of images comes the extraordinary development in late Mannerism of sacred and profane iconography. In fact, the more an attempt is made to fix it in a constant type the more the image proves unstable, and changeable.

Valdes), and this excludes the mediation of history

no longer a mediating form of representation, but a means of ascetic exaltation. The impulse which forces man towards God however is still a will, a thirst for intellectual knowledge and nature;

he looks for

God

because his intellect desires truth,

but the absolute truth of relative truth of nature

logic

is

God

and

different

history.

not enough, but love

no more than

is

is

To

from the

reach

God

required; and love,

form of the intellect. But if God is the final goal, he is no longer the a priori form of creation, that is to say a form

in

its

turn,

Mannerism, while declaring

art is

is

a superior

disciple of classicism,

is

itself

not so in

the

faithful

fact; for if

form,

which preserves intact the rational structure of nature under the changing appearances of the senses, remains classical, the image on the other hand is anticlassical,

because

it

retains certain exterior likenesses

while continually changing the content. Moreover, classical art itself, if

abstract is

it is

viewed

norms and no longer

as

an ensemble of

as a historical reality,

thereby placed automatically in an anti-classical

perspective. It

is

then no longer a formal principle

universally applicable, but an

immense

repertoire of

images with varied meanings and combinations, capable of multiplying almost spontaneously.

beauty which these words awake in the mind of the

one or two details connected with the situation where this beauty is revealed; the nobility reader,

of her walk, her proud look, her blushing or paleness

contours,

through discontent, shame, anger. The well-built form of Ariosto permits the intervention of feeling in so far as it is only concerned with a feeling tied to

colors, but the

nature ; the sensitive rhythms of Tasso, charged with

image which appears fleetingly in our imagination, generally when our imagination is confronted with a dramatic situation. Ariosto gave

emotion, allow the image to express moral senti-

a precise description of form in the case of a beautiful

of the images give the

artist

woman:

them

best suited to produce any

Tasso's influence was important in accelerating this crisis

which renewed

no longer

is

its

aesthetic values.

a well-defined

proportions,

its plastic

form with

shape,

its

its

Beauty

indefinite

the face, the breasts, the arms, the legs,

the proportions of the limbs, the color of the hair,

is

fixed for us in a

form. Tasso

is

The

which is described well-elaborated and unchangeable

the eyes, the cheeks.

figure

content merely to say that the

woman

has "fine limbs," adding to the vague image of

ments and their

alteration according to

different

and the variability complete licence to use

situations. Finally, the suppleness

in the

manner

Form when its

desired effect or emotion. limits

of

its

function

has reached the

construction has

brought about an equilibrium, while the image always connected with a goal which transcends

and

is

always subject to change.

is it

E. C.

I

ROME, I597-1604. ANNIBALE CARRACCI (1560-1609). DECORATIONS IN THE GALLERY OF THE FARNESE PALACE,

17

CORTONA

CARRACCI

The

GAULLI

of the conception of nature as a revealed and eternal

crisis

of creation was

reflected,

two opposing

in the

The breakdown of Caravaggio

to

form

at the beginning of the seventeenth century,

styles

of Caravaggio and Annibale

the old conception

of nature led in the case of

a vivid and immediate rendering of

of Annibale Carracci and his followers,

Carracci.

it led to

reality ; in the case

a quest for the origin

and raison d'etre of art, in other words to a return to the past. The great age of Baroque decoration begins with Annibale' s frescoes in the gallery of the Pala':^o Farnese ( i J9J-1604) scenes are

what were

called

quadri riportati ; that

.

These mythological they were

is to say,

planned like easel pictures and transferred into a simulated architectural setting

adorned with herms and caryatids. The forms are a conscious,

nostalgic imitation of those of the classical tradition. There can no longer

be any direct connection with nature ; it can only be evoked through the

images of a day long past when all human experience was experience

of nature. These images come alive thanks to the artist's sense of history ; but only imagination can carry us into

present ; and art born of the imagination

a time remote from

the

because it is

is decorative

based on an ideal of beauty already fully achieved in the past, which revives in the present. its

concern to

make

So that the more "imaginative" art

the imaginary

appear natural. Such

Pietro da Cortona's Glorification

is,

is

it

the greater

the case with

of the Reign of Urban VIII

quadro riportato disappears movement, the figures floating among

( 16^^-16^9) , in which the device of the

and

the whole composition is set in

simulated entablatures, caryatids, and clouds. longer a

myth or fable,

attempt

to conceal the artifice

is the

it is oratorical

of it

all,

and

The decoration

theatrical ;

is

no

Cortona makes no

thus showing thatfor him painting

appropriate medium for allegorical glorification. In his ceiling

fresco in the church of the

Gesu

( 16J4-16J9) Gaulli uses the abstract

symbol of Christ's monogram as a source of physical light and extends the space of the church into the painted sky, which is filled with angels

and

saints.

He

is

trying to

show that

this miraculous vision

is

the

logical sequel of the continuous miracle of providence operating on earth

through the

medium of

the Church.

either fictitious or oratorical ; it is

18

The figuration

a hymn of praise.

is

now no

longer

E. C. 2

PIETRO DA CORTONA (1596-1669). GLORIFICATION OF THE REIGN OF URBAN

VIII,

1633-1639. BARBERINI PALACE, ROME.

E.G.

3

GIOVANNI BATTISTA GAULLI, CALLED BACICCIA (1639-I709). THE TRIUMPH OF THE NAME OF

20

JESUS, 1674-1679. CHIESA

DEL GESU, ROME.

THE FUNCTION OF IMAGES

The religious crisis of the sixteenth century directly affected art as a tangible

necessary means of church

form of dogma and ritual.

festation of the truth of faith

as a

This visible mani-

was the scandal which

the Reformation condemned as a survival of paganism. This tangible, even sensual, mediation between

God

humanity and

cannot be admitted,

now

means of persuasion.

serve as a

most spectacular forms of

encouraged the

It

art, just as it

accentuated

the spectacular character of religious worship and

But at the moment of its greatest danger, the Church fundamentally re-examined its own pro-

ritual.

gram and

aims.

The

doctrine of the rational form

that

of the universe, revealed in the scriptures and deve-

every form of spiritual mediation has been put aside,

loped by the scholastic philosophers and theologians,

and men are even suspicious of the scriptures. Every intermediary between man and God, whether it be nature, history, the Church, or art, is by definition

was breaking down. The Church could no longer continue to deny, relying upon the specious inter-

an illusion and a

sin.

Not even

the theorists of the

pretation of sacred texts, the evidence of geogra-

new

phical discoveries, or of the

physical science;

Counter-Reformation dared to defend the use of

nor could

images

they recognized that the accusation

continue to represent as fixed and constant a reality

of paganism against the art of the Renaissance was

which science described as in continuous movement and change. But the notion that Baroque art with its ever moving forms was intended to represent

in toto;

not entirely baseless, and they protested against the profane images which

filled

the

They

churches.

however between good and bad images. The image in itself is neither bad nor good, but it can be used for a good or a perverted end. It is not a question of the true and the untrue, but of the useful and the harmful. It is not possible to formudistinguished

late a

theory of images as a theory of forms can be

art, if it

constant state of flux does not bear

The

structure of the universe, whether

fixed or mobile, as

it

to be of service to the Church,

its

the universe in

examination.

was

no longer

interests the artist, just

no longer continued, except

terms, to furnish matter for

in very restricted

dogma

of a doctrinal nature. Another

or arguments

difficulty attributable

possible to use images in a

to the changing times: having already decided not

and this is what at the end of the sixteenth century was done by Gilio in his "Two

to evaluate images according to ontological truths,

formulated, but

it

is

political sense,

Dialogues

...

of the Errors of Painters concerning

Histories" (1564), by Ammannati (1582), Paleotti (1582) and, at the beginning of the seventeenth century, Federico

Borromeo

(1625).

Church found herself confronted by the moral problem bound up with that faculty of the human mind which produces images (i.e. the imagination) and which had necessarily to be submitted to the criteria of the good or the bad, of the useful or the

the

harmful, like

The

defense and revaluation of images was the

great undertaking of the Baroque age ; the Church,

now

convinced that

it

it

started

when

had contained the

Protestant attack, passed to the counter-offensive.

In the face of the iconoclast Reformation, the Catholic

Church reaffirmed the

ideal

Roman

value

and

practical necessity of visible demonstrations, as

an

from the events of her own history. The Church reaffirmed again the validity of classical culture and of that of the Renaissance because, if what is beautiful gives pleasure, it can

edifying

example,

all

human

imagination

may

and then

will lead to

it

are

no

is

threatening

less

merely

good, or it

on

activity of the

it

can be inspired

will lead to bad.

all

fronts, sins of

When

thought

grave than bad actions. If it leads to good,

the function of images didactic;

The

operate according to divine design,

by the Devil, and then heresy

actions.

but

this

is

practical, educative,

and

function cannot be performed

by transmitting moral exhortations and

edifying examples

with the aid of images. The

Church wished

display in

to

universal extension of her

own

art

the origin and

authority; this forced

rather than to spread the truth of faith, to

her,

human behavior and

influence

all

the actions of men

regardless of their social rank or cultural level.

vaHd only for

this

In the politico-social program of the Church,

authority in general, starting with that of the state,

which descends from aims

religious authority

co-ordinating the conduct of

at

certain goal, but

which

absolute

sovereign.

The

places

it

and

a unitary organism,

and

goal,

the

if

ways of being, must therefore be

different

of class interests,

common

individuals

desires henceforth to be

which

taken into consideration,

towards a

an

in

of subjection vis-a-vis the

and individuals. These

this variety

state

all

will stress these specific differences in its

classes

which

life

movement

is

to be

which for the Church

is

the

years of the century, described

first

:

;

may

person." Devotion

ing religious

then be described as reduc-

to praxis; the devout person does

life

not demand the demonstration of supreme truth,

but he selects a certain manner of behavior.

and for the State power.

salvation,

The demonstration of The image decisions

;

its

no influence on our actions or effect is on intentions. It does not prohas

vide a plan of action, clearly will is

more

and

it

be the more

is

only an appeal. This according as

effective

suited to the attitudes, interests

of the various social still

classes.

A

it

and customs

hierarchical structure

plays a role in the transmission of these appeals, it

there

is

does so from the top to the bottom. But a

tendency

movement

to be

now

in the social

pyramid for the

from the bottom to the top, and to

permit increasingly the inferior classes to take part in matters of general interest. It result

was not only

of a kind of aping curiosity

that,

in

or devotional.

The

true protagonist in

or the bourgeoisie, as a particular social class,

but the historical personage

whom

Guicciardini had

man," the man who was not seeking a universal view of things, but who wanted a clear objective idea of reality. For the purposes of practical existence or utility, communication at the level of the image appears more effective than that at the intellectual level of form and conception, called "the private

is

see therefore has

that of the

become must be

part of the

who

others

have entered and

human community, and who

initiated into Christian is

The Church

all.

many problems. Among

pagan peoples

part of humanity

life.

If

such a large

not yet Christian, and must there-

fore await the revelation,

we may conclude

that the

revelation has not been completed. But as this thesis

would give ammunition to Catholic Church affirmed that carry

these scenes of social customs was not the proletariat

we

the

not to speak of religious iconography, whether

for

identical

is

although a single goal directs them

plete,

menting in images the manner of life of the bourgeois and proletarian classes; and it was not for ideological reasons that this documentation was infinitely more lively and animated than that of the official portraits,

truth

a

everyone, while the ways of being are numerous,

as a

seventeenth century, art was concerned with docu-

historical

St Francis of Sales, in

strength, the duties, the tasks of each particular

society

the

kind of religious

new

essential instrument for the

being and behavior of different

worldly.

a reality of the first order

characterize

domain

certainly preserves the different

situation

A

a

became an

body which

monarchy

same

men towards

then, art

and explained to Christians as "devotion." It was the means of reaching salvation through works, that is by living in the world and carrying out social duties "The act of devotion should be practised in a different manner among gentlemen, artisans, servants, princes, widows, unmarried women, and married women in addition the practice of devotion should be adapted to the

levels of social hierarchy, but

in the

and also

operates in a different

it

much more

is

it

but for

authority,

religious

Nor is

means simply "taking note" without any speculative effort, and does not turn the spirit away from the immediate and practical exigencies of life.

because

but that it

it is

to those

the

the

Protestants,

the revelation

is

com-

the responsibility of Christians to

who do

not possess

it.

This mission-

on the one hand, of the defense of the faithful from the danger of heresy and, on the other, of extending the Catholic community to

ary task, consisting,

peoples in recently discovered continents,

is

effected

by "propaganda." Propaganda does not demonstrate, it persuades; and it persuades people to be devout. There are various levels of propaganda; for example, can act

classical culture,

addressed to

men

sensitive to the

dentially unites

modern and

moral

intellectual

life

with

pagans, primitive peoples,

if

when

bond which

ancient

it

is

provi-

history,

and

But the ignorant, they cannot understand life.

the classical language of form, are sensitive to the

message of the images. Thus a new and ample iconography of Christ was born, of the Madonna, of the saints (we should not forget that here

we

are

addressing peoples

who were

originally polytheist

propaganda which prepares the spirit of man in a general way for the tasks which will from time to time be demanded; there is a direct propaganda, which aims at an immediate and determined indirect

and idolaters) and a new, simple, direct type of symbol (for example the Heart of Jesus). Devotional images do not exalt the "historical" figure, and they tend towards realism, or rather towards a kind of naturalism. Their aim is to show that heroic virtue

century was animated, on various levels and in

not exclusively the property of the ancients and

various directions, by a spirit of propaganda, at least

is

of great men; but that anyone can become a

even

he lives in

if

own

human

society,

and

saint,

carries out

with a devout mind. For this new kind of election, the images offer a new road or,

his

social duties

as Francis of Sales said, a ladder.

his "Introduction to the

of the "devotional" full

Devout

The prose Life"

of

itself

an example

is

style, clear, precise, descriptive,

of images which are clearly "functional" because

goal. All, or nearly

in the sense that

its

all,

the art of the seventeenth

images act

eventual implicit conceptions.

seventeenth century

It

is

and not for

true that the

the century of the great

is

alle-

gories, but the allegories are not images reduced

on the contrary, they are concepts reduced to images. There is no attempt to make the image a concept, but rather to give to the concept, transposed into image, a force which does not to concepts;

support a demonstration but,

they are directly explicit.

as images,

as in the quality

of the

image, a practical entreaty. Even the movements "Differentiated" devotion

than

politics.

human

In

fact, if

is,

the end

in reality, is

none other

the salvation of the

species, the politics of the state, as a collective

body, must be a means and an instrument of salva-

The

tion.

Protestants too

(it is

sufficient to think

of

Calvin) accept the transformation of religion into

and the principle

politics,

sanctified

eius religio"

^'cuius regio

with the Peace of Augsburg

(1555),,

made

possible an identification between the confessional

and the national struggles, and set the stage for what was to be the dramatic history of the seventeeth century. Henceforth politics no longer depended

upon

the decisions of the "great ones"; they concern-

ed everyone. The ever-growing network of

traffic,

which was becoming intercontinental, the accumulation of riches by the mercantile bourgeoisie, the great financial loans required by the new methods of warfare, their economic consequences, the decline of the old feudal system and the rise of capitalism, enormously extended the field in which the determining forces of political life were born and acted. The rulers themselves tended moreover to remove power from the feudal aristocracy, seeking their support on a wider base, in the bourgeoisie which held the economic power, and in the people who were becoming conscious of their own strength. Since the choice of religion (and this was already appearing as an ideological choice) can determine

of artistic currents and

which could be century,

the

tastes

develop by a mechanism

called propaganda. In the sixteenth

diffusion

of classicism

throughout

Europe was achieved as a result of analyses, of judgment, and finally of the acceptance of certain facts and certain values whose ensemble formed one culture. In the seventeenth century, cultural relations

the

in

visual

arts

were

propagated,

almost

as

an epidemic, by certain types of images, and often through the intellectually null but psychologically powerful factor of fashion.

The very

fact

that

aim of Baroque poetics was the "marvelous," which implies the suspension of the intellectual faculty, demonstrates in what zones of the human mind propaganda was to act through the image on the imagination in fact, considered as the source and the impulse of feelings, which in their turn were to be forced into action. the

declared



The

art

of the seventeenth century has been

accused of being oratorical, of exalting the "great

men" and

the divine springs of authority; although,

mania for greatness had its counterpart in the taste for minute description, full of detail, sometimes pedantic. Often there is a distinction between court art, with its "grand manner," and bourgeois art, with its modest and as

Croce has observed,

this

descriptive manner, identifying the

first

with a so-

suasion (religious or political) becomes the essential

and French Baroque classicism, the second with Flemish and Dutch art. The distinction is not entirely justified. Both Italy and France pro-

manner

duced

the

movement of

masses,

and compromise the

equilibrium of the political forces, ideological per-

is still

level

for the exercise of authority

:

its

instrument

propaganda, and propaganda operates on the of,

and by means

of,

images. There

is

an

called Italian

at the

time quite as

many examples of genre

painting as Flanders and Holland did of history

painting

(it is

enough

to cite the

names of Rubens

and Rembrandt) and it is by no means rare to see the same artists practising both types of work, which clearly belong, by analogy or contradiction, ;

events ahead which, although they have indispensable premises in the past, can

no longer be conceived

as simple effects of certain causes.

to the same cultural orbit. Social

To

explain the apparent contradiction,

remember

the

new

we must

position of the artist in society.

had been in the preceding century, when he was patronized by Popes, princes, and noblemen, on familiar terms. But His prestige was undoubtedly

like the

than

it

autonomy was now much

his professional

Henceforth, he

less

greater.

the middle-class professional

is

man,

doctor or the lawyer; as such he disposes of

a specific technique, and this technique culture, because

bears not only

it

is

also a

on the material

execution of his works, but also on the formulation

and elaboration of to take part in

all

his images. In fact,

he

is

things which require any use of

images (public spectacles, funerals, ceremonies,

The

asked

etc.).

princes and kings are only the great clients of

them

the artist; beside

there

is

another clientele, the

and by means of prints the work of art also reached the lower classes. The system of direct commissioning of a work of art declined; between the artist and the public, from now on, stood the dealer. Artists, or at least painters, began working without commission, producing works destined for anyone who could pay for them. rich bourgeoisie,

Genre painting deals with human figures painted not to please one man, but a class. Artists catered henceforth for a public which was influenced by their work, but a public whose own aspirations, opinions and demands in turn exerted an influence on the work of art. With this rose a system of criticism which became a lively part of artistic life. As art was now supposed to exercise a social function, it was necessary to explain the intentions and methods of the artist. Art had become a technique of persuasion, and persuasion presupposes an open bilateral relationship; if it operated in only one direction, from high to low, it would be under constraint and therefore, to make itself understood, would not require the suggestive power of images. If it is to persuade, it must answer to the desire of being persuaded. Art has now become no longer the creation of persons

nation;

it

endowed with

a strong imagi-

develops and educates the imagination,

which becomes

in this

way an

essential function of

the mind. Moreover, there cannot be any social and political

interest

without

a

social

and

political

imagination, without a certain ability to foresee

political

imagination

new

a

is

fact,

and

the counterpart of the practical spirit of the

is

it

and

bourgeoisie, of

From

its

positive conception of existence.

were no longer courtiers but middle-class professionals, it might be inferred that the traditional distinction between a court art bound up with power and an art of the middle classes the fact that artists

was more apparent than real. Actually the so-called court art was not so much an instrument of authority as an image which the bourgeoisie gave itself of authority. Otherwise, why should authority have had recourse to persuasion rather than to constraint? clear,

on the other hand,

senting

authority,

intended to

that the

generally

manner of

allegorically,

make it seem present and

It is

repre-

not

is

in action before

on the contrary, it makes it from the realm of facts to

the eyes of the spectator; it

less

concrete, transfers

that of ideas,

and reduces

material reaUty.

From

selected persuasion,

it

it

the

to a formal rather than a

moment

destroyed

that authority

itself.

If

Rubens

embodied great ideas in beautiful opulent women, it was because he instinctively saw that an appeal to the senses would be more effective than a demonstration of abstract ideas.

As

nician, all

bourgeois professional, the

a

and the new

class

was keenly

the possibilities of technique.

forget that the

first act

artist is a tech-

interested in

We

should not

of the bourgeoisie was the

transformation of technique, the organization of

and the creation of an industrial system. The so-called "excesses" of Baroque art may certainly appear incongruous in terms of the

artisan production,

practical spirit of the bourgeoisie.

appear

so,

however,

if

one

They

reflects

will

that

not

these

"excesses" had a purely instrumental reason; they

were expedients devised to attain a specific end, their purpose being to arouse a sense of wonder, that

is

a

break with every habit, and a projection of

thought by means of the imagination into the domain of the possible. Art demonstrates that even the

images which are most remote from

common

rience can, as a result of technique, be

made

expe-

percept-

and communicable. Imagination, in fact, has a function not unhke that of the hypothesis in science, and in the same way it is more valid for ible, credible,

its

productivity than for

its

possible content of truth.

CARRACCI

RENI

Hercules

at

the Crossroads^ painted by Annihale

Carracci

between ij^j and ij^y for the "Camerino" of the Pala':(^o Farnese in

Rome,

a classical "fable" like the mythological scenes in the

is

gallery of the

same palace. But

the mythological theme in

moral allegory: Hercules

implies a

is

confronted with

this case

the

choice

between vice and virtue, pleasure and duty, the transitoriness of worldly

joys and the perpetuity of fame and history. The painting

montage we

see

a typical

is

of elements with moral allusions. In the landscape background

a rocky eminence with the steep path of virtue winding up

and a shady wood, which

is

an invitation

to

rest

to it,

and pleasure;

the

figure of V^irtue is a statue, that of Pleasure a dancer clad in trans-

parent

veils

blown by the breeze. This allegorical landscape

"naturalistic"

—not

in the sense that it is observed

is nevertheless

and taken from

actual scenery, but in the sense that the abstract concepts find a "natural"

expression in the forms of nature.

As

the ancients taught, the forms of

nature are full of meaning, containing all the knowledge that to

man ; and

useful

beauty, as ideal nature, is its tangible revelation.

In the Massacre of the Innocents

had just returned influence of

is

to

Bologna from

(c.

1611), Guido Reni, who

Rome and was

still

under the

Caravaggesque "realism," represents the historical event

as an action having no development in space and time. In keeping with Aristotle's Poetics, however, he gives the scene strict unity of time

movements of the figures within a clear geometrical structure, attempts to convey a visual expression of

and place ; he

confines the strenuous

the two tragic emotions postulated by Aristotle

and embodies

(pity

and

terror),

the idea of catharsis in the two angels descending

from

palm of martyrdom. The background is not composed but of architecture. For the transition from the harsh

heaven with the

of landscape,

reality of the event to the spirituality of the idea does not require the

mediation of nature

:

the severe classicism of the

reveal the lofty religious

and moral import of a

as this massacre of innocent children.

forms

is

enough to

scene so brutally tragic

»

ANNIBALE CARRACCI (1560-1609). HERCULES AT THE CROSSROADS, I595-I597. MUSEO NAZIONALE DI CAPODIMONTE, NAPLES.

E. C. 6

PETER PAUL RUBENS (1577-1640). HENRY IV PRESENTED WITH THE PORTRAIT OF MARIE De' MEDICI, ABOUT

1

622. LOUVRE, PARIS.

RUBENS

DOMENICHINO

JVbeN he painted

Henry IV presented with

the Portrait of

Marie de' Medici (c. 1622), Rubens transposed a recent event into an allegory. Henry IV had just become undisputed master of France, and he now decided

take a new wife, an event which coincided with

to

A

number of themes contribute to the allegory. The king is still armed, and in the distance the fires of war are still burning; but while Minerva urges him to prudence, two cupids play the return of peace.

with his helmet and shield, which are now unwanted. Above, in the clouds, the forthcoming royal marriage is symboli':(ed by that

and funo.

As

was customary at

a portrait of his bride, and

it

the time, the

was

this

of fupiter

king was presented with

ceremony of presentation, which

actually took place at court, that provided

Rubens with

the point of

departure for this elaborate allegory. Thus we see an actual half-length

portrait of the queen, duly framed, a picture within the picture, and

a transparent allusion

power of painting

to the

to kindle the emotions.

Domenichino's treatment of historical and religious subjects is dijferent from that of both Caravaggio and Reni. History painting, to his thinking,

has no need of catharsis ;

it is itself

a kind of catharsis

inasmuch as events are ennobled by the manner and style of the narration.

Poor

In his picture of St Cecilia distributing Clothes to the

(1614-161J) he does not shrink from including plebeian motifs: children

quarreling with each other,

boys climbing on each

shoulders to reach the terrace on which the saint is standing. these motifs are treated in

That

a noble,

classical,

deliberate repetition of verticals

distribution

of figures,

horizontally ,

and

the

in

are

well harmonised.

It

is

a typically devout

the

calculated

depth.

and

lighting does not produce strongly contrasted shadows, colors

even

shown by

is

and horizontals, and

vertically,

But

Raphaelesque manner.

worked out

the composition has been carefully

other's

The

the light

composition,

particularly in the noble bearing with which the poor, the elect of God, are represented.

The painting

works of

and

in

persuasive,

charity,

as in a

Domenichino echoes

is,

in fact,

an invitation

to take

the tone throughout is simple, tranquil,

moral exhortation. the literary style of

In

this

part

and

devotional picture

St Francis of

Sales.

DOMENICHINO

30

(1581-1641). ST CECILIA DISTRIBUTING

CLOTHES TO THE POOR, 1614-1615. SAN LUIGI DEI FRANCESI, ROME.

POETICS

In

domain of

the

ideas the

AND RHETORIC

Baroque undoubtedly

imagines

it;

in fact, imagination has

now become

a

represents a reaction against the philosophy of the

concrete activity of the mind, a means of thinking

Idea and mannerist Neoplatonism, and a return to

through images rather than through

the philosophy of experience.

The two

great sources

of Baroque aesthetic thought are the Poetics and the

and

Rhetoric of Aristotle,

their Latin derivatives.

Closely associated with the Poetics that the character of intellectual.

because

"mimesis"

more

ethical than

Mimesis does not prescribe what to do,

it is

possible to imitate different things in

ways; moreover,

different

is

the notion

is

it

can be the imitation of

the better, the similar, or the worse. If tragedy

"mimesis of

a serious action,

which

is

is

completed in

with a certain extension in ornamental lan-

itself,

guage and its

.

.

.

with instances which excite pity and terror,

effect is to raise

passions" {Poetics,

iv.)

and glorify the



spirit

of these

if this is so, it is clear that

the definition applies perfectly well to the "type" of historical-religious

Baroque composition,

just

as

"ugliness without pain," indeed with the pleasure that imitation

is

always capable of producing,

simultaneously the fundamental motif of

is

comedy

and of genre scenes. There are,- as we shall see, works which aim at recording in figurative art patterns which are complete equivalents of those of the tragedy-and comedy of Aristotle.

logic. Aristotle

domain of the possible is open to the poet, and that it is this which distinguishes him from the historian, who must deal with what has happened; but he adds that what is credible or possible is only that which has already happened {Poetics, ix. 9). For this reason, the serious imagination has a basis in the memory, and its premise is historical experience it is this which prevents the imagination from wandering aimlessly in the undefined domain of chance. But the pure and simple repetition of an event can be achieved by chance, which would appear to contradict what we have just said. When however repetition is not due to chance, but to the laws of verisimilitude and necessity, the cardinal laws of history, then we are no longer dealing with stated that the

;

a particular case but with a universal fact.

we

Nor

are

which can be reduced to logical causality if everything were a logical relation of cause and effect, everything could be foreseen, and no foreseen fact would be able to excite pity or terror. A relation must exist between facts, but not such as will permit us to know beforehand what will happen after; coherence and foresight belong only to the plan conceived in the mind of the artist, and the end dealing with laws ;

he achieves will be a surprise to the spectator. This

The for

principle "ut pictura poesis^'' a fundamental

Baroque

aesthetics, carries

with

it

one

the essential

occurs in

many Baroque works of

art,

even in the

absence of any explicit time sequence; an almost

accom-

question of verisimilitude and embraces the whole

realistic

problem of the production of images, and of the difference between images which are useful and harmful. But it is important to observe that this distinction is no longer a matter of deciding whether or not the images conform to certain moral precepts; it is based, rather, on the whole process and mechanism of their production. Images produced through the process of verisimilitude are useful, while those produced through the arbitrary caprice of fantasy are harmful. It is not so much what one imagines which is important, but the way one

panied by a miraculous vision, without the passage from one to the other appearing either obvious or

representation of certain parts

is

absurd to the spectator. For example, a brutal depiction of the martyrdom of a saint, with its catharsis value,

may be combined with

the angels and saints in glory.

a heavenly vision of

An

even closer

rela-

tion can be discerned between the distribution of the

various parts of tragedy (prologue, episode, exodium)

and the compositional arrangement of Baroque paintings with historical and rehgious subjects: big

figures

in

the foreground

to

introduce the

action, then the episode,

and

finally

The domain

echoes of the

action fading into the distance in the background.

advantage

is

in

which rhetoric

is

shown

the "polls," the city with

its

to

its

best

assemblies,

powers of deliberation and judgment. The character, temperament, passions, virtues and vices of

its

Aristotle's Rhetoric

is

a treatise

on the

of per-

art

suading, by speech; but as Aristotle specifies,

it is

individuals are certainly not suppressed in the state;

the speech in the Areopagus, the political speech.

but

The

to

application of the theory of the political speech

to art

is

new

a

one, but the idea of art as

elocutio

all

human

way. Baroque nature, but to

because the rigorous logic of the demonstrative

his situation

argument of Mantegna has been dissolved in human speech, and all the inflections and subtleties of

no

becomes

was the

excitable, pathetic, dramatic; he

first artist

to observe the suggestive force of Tasso's

and the new value which the image takes on when, emptied of all plastic consistency, it gathers to itself a wealth of accents, subtleties and allusion. Beauty itself becomes the expression of a state of mind, or of a moral condition, which can be understood intuitively through a current of human

poetics,

The

sympathy.

first

quality

of the

becomes spontaneity, the natural

then,

artist,

fluidity

of the

speech; but this implies the complete mastery of

means,

expressive

of technique,

"^rx

artem" said Aristotle, meaning that the

you intend

to persuade, the

persuade {Rhetoric^

iii.

more you

est

less

celare

you say

are able to

a

it is

way of discovering, ordering and expounding

addressed no longer to

is

man

as

man

is

as

he lives in a society, in which

always different, because society has

immutable form. Man is part of a certain tradition, of social customs; he has his prejudices and attitudes; he shares common ideas of what is good and what is not good, what is useful and what is not useful; his desires may be urgent or not pressing, precise or vague; his interests change according to circumstances; his conception of space and time is determined much more by his own situation in the world than by his ideas of the definite or

structure of the universe.

Aristotle says there are three kinds of rhetoric

:

the

and the demonstrative. "The time proper to each of these is as follows. For the deliberative, the judicial

deliberative orator

it is

the future, for in exhorting

or dissuading he advises respecting things

come. The time proper to a

done Rhetoric does not deal with any specific material;

art

same

"the center of the universe," or in his relation to

past, for

2).

in relation

nature, but rather to society. In the

comes from sixteenth-century Venice. Pino and Dolce praise the painting of Giorgione and of Titian,

feeling have passed into art. In Tintoretto speech

no longer considered

these facts are

it is

still

to

judicial pleader is the

always on the subject of actions already

one party accuses and the other defends. The demonstrative orator is concerned chiefly with that the

the present, for

it is

in reference to things as they

"matters which are likely to persuade in any given

are that everyone either praises or blames. Never-

which "speech is the peculiar quality of man"; and not only speech but dialogue, even if one of the parties is confined to a listening role. For the orator behaves as if his inter-

theless, orators often avail

subject" in a civilization in

locutor replied to him, interrupted him, questioned

him, and made objections. But even to demonstrate the truth, artifice

:

it

it

is

aim is not mere verbal

if his

not a

takes into account the manners, the prin-

and values which, while not being absolute

ciples

truths,

have

a

foundation in the

common

conscience

themselves of other times,

by awakening a recollection of what has already happened as by anticipating what is likely to happen" {Rhetoric, i. 3). The kind of rhetoric whose expression is found in the art of the seventeenth century is the demonstrative, which regards the present as a meeting point between the experience of the past and the prospect of the future. Here we have a new conception of time; man lives

as well

in the present, but his decisions

imply a reflection

and tend to determine behavior. "The most important manner of persuading and giving good counsel is to be informed of all the fortunes of the state, to have a clear knowledge of its practices, laws, and those things which are of particular importance to

on

each

consequences, which are no longer reducible to the

state,

because everyone can be persuaded by

what is useful. And what is useful to every state is what tends towards its conservation" (^Rhetoric, i. 8).

his

History

past, is

and

a

forward view to

no longer only

a

his

future.

form of education and

an example, but one of the data of the problem: the life

of the individual and that of the community

develop in a continuous sequence of premises and logic of cause

morals

is

and

effect,

because the problem of

more important than

that of

knowledge.

The

paintings of the seven-

historico-religious

teenth century incorporate this the

new

idea of time in

composition and the very structure of the

picture space.

We

pass

from

distant historical allu-

delineation of an action to

from the bald the vague promise of a

future beatitude. There

almost always a direct

sions to visions of celestial glory,

reference

to

is

present experience:

among

persons

wearing antique costume are others clad in modern clothes, with

some

detail in the painting so full

of

truth that the viewer feels that he can almost touch

—a basket of

fairly distant,

in a speech

no more than

a recall, or

an example

interwoven with arguments and pleading

(Pietro da Cortona). If we are to persuade effectively,

we must

first

be convinced ourselves

—not only of

what we affirm and enjoin upon others, but even more of the possibility and the utility of human communication. Artists of the the truth or excellence of

seventeenth century took pride in the technique of

communication

at their disposal,

their techniques in accordance

they had in view.

The

and often varied

with the various ends

principles of authority

bouquet of flowers, animals, and other objects which are painted with lively

values proclaimed and extolled in their

realism, but placed in an "imaginary" context.

their

it

fruit, a

There may be

different kinds of rhetorical or per-

suasive speech; one

may

present without

comment

the irrefutable proof of facts. If the proof

is

it

;

;

sented as the present (Carracci); or

it

work

are

only the content, sometimes merely incidental, of

communication. The important thing

is

that

communication should take place, and take place on all levels, by the most effective ways and means, direct and indirect.

not

must be accompanied by arguments or enthymemes if there is no proof, it must be replaced with argument. The "fact" can be considered as an event which happens under our eyes, a proof which has no need of comment (Caravaggio) or as a past experience which must be introduced again in the present, and preimmediately clear and evident,

and the

may remain

The important thing is, in other words, that human communication should be open and total, inspired

only by the keen desire of persuading

everyone that certain things are useful or necessary, others harmful and to be avoided; that

is,

it

must

be inspired by the desire to form groups of loyal

men with

the

same

beliefs

and opinions, beyond the

preconceived limits of formal logic.

THE STATE AND THE CAPITAL CITY The

great political creation of the

seventeenth

century was the nation-state, embodied in

form,

typical

the

Europe was born system of

states

monarchy.

absolute

most

its

Modern

in the seventeenth century as a

always tending towards a balance

In layout, the capital city differed greatly from the

medieval city with future planning

its

division into districts.

had to envisage a rapid increase

it

of population, an extensive

and administrative

traffic

system, a political

center, and, of course, provision

of power, a political and economic equilibrium. The

for strong contingents of troops.

Renaissance had produced an urban civilization in

demanded

which the cities

free

communes had been

claiming to be small sovereign

replaced by

They

states.

were not only the seat of their prince and the instrument of his personal policy, but heirs to a historical tradition, and centers of culture. In the seventeenth century, the concentration of

traffic

long, broad streets, converging in

open

and the planning of the city increasingly depended on the layout of the streets. The city became a network of roads and communications; and the buildings which represented political and religious authority became the center of public life. The old relationship between city and countryside

was

also changed,

civilization

residence of foreign diplomatic representatives, while

history

towns were reduced to the rank of regional administrative centers. There was now a "capital city" art and culture, sensitive to international currents and exchanges; and a "provincial city" art and culture which, although sometimes of a high order, suffered from the disadvantage of the town's peripheral position, and its remoteness from

Wheeled

squares,

power in one city established its supremacy; it became the seat of authority, with the organs of government and public administration, and was the the remaining

In

and the

classical antithesis

between

and nature was replaced by a social distinction, that between town-dweller and peasant. If the capital city was conscious and proud of its

and past, it also looked confidently to the future and plans for its growth were drawn up under ;

the personal guidance of the sovereign or ruler.

The prototype of

its

position, generally in

which also incorporated the ideas of the past was, and could only be, Rome. This was the first European city which the planners attempted to invest with the structure and appearance of a capital. But its glorious past, the ruins of the ancient city, were buried under a heterogeneous mass of dwellings, with here and there, emerging in isolated splendor, some patrician palat(t(o or stately church. In the middle of the fifteenth century. Pope Nicholas V

the center of the state, and the

more modern methods

decided that the Vatican deserved more dignified

the broader currents of international thought.

With

its

new

role as representative of the country,

the capital tended to lose the traditional character

which had stamped

tecturally.

of warfare,

As its

a result of

socially

;

there

and

archi-

now

it

city

surroundings than these abandoned ruins. Once the

was no need for

schisms were ended, and the historical supremacy

became less a fortified place than a center of roads and communications. The interior growth of the city, too, no longer depended on the initiative of its burgesses and municipality, but on its political rulers. Its physical appearance, which had been a reflection of the way of life of the whole urban community, now symbolized the intentions and aspirations to pomp and power of its rulers. walls,

capital

took

defense against aggressors

place far from the city walls

and

it

municipal

the

of the Church of

Rome

reafl&rmed, the ruins could

be regarded as symbols of the heroic past of the primitive Church.

Leon

Battista Alberti's plans for

on the restoration of the ancient city; and his treatise on architecture, written in Rome in the middle of the century, was the reconstruction were based

probably regarded as a guide for the "humanist" reconstruction of

Rome. The report made

to

Leo

X

was conceived on these lines (formerly attributed Raphael, but now, following Forster, to to Bramante). The problem arose anew after the sack of Rome in 1527; and the new streets laid out in the

modern capitals was to be seen in Paris and London. The urban reforms of Paris were initiated by Henry IV, and continued under Louis XIV, from the plans of

second half of the sixteenth century destroyed the

Blondel and Bullet; and under Louis

concentration of dwellings clustering around the

of Patte. The reconstruction of

Ponte Sant'Angelo. The only

Great Fire of 1666 was based on the designs of Christopher Wren (although few of them were put

undertaken in the

urban reform was

real

of the sixteenth century

last years

by Sixtus V, whose technical planner was Domenico Fontana. Now that the most dangerous phase of the Reformation, the Popes

felt

its

revolt,

power of

states,

the

had been crushed,

Europe evolving

that, in a

system of national national

open

the spiritual

and super-

Church could not be

without the support of a temporal

state.

into a

effective

The

capital

transformation of ancient

into

effect).

Madrid,

cities

too,

into

XV, from those

London

underwent

Turin, the capital of the small but

Piedmont, became

a

model

modern

city.

physical aspect of the capital of the

Catholic world was a powerful form of poHtical and

and the forma urbis, as envisaged by Sixtus V and Domenico Fontana, became an important "rhetorical" means of persuasion. religious propaganda,

Because

new

the

connected

streets

the

ancient

Christian basilicas, they had a devotional function.

Pilgrims were attracted to the ancient basilicas, and the

whole area was consecrated anew, and invested

with an ideological quality. Just as production is the principal aim in an industrial city today, so in a "holy" city religion

is

all

important.

longer belongs exclusively to

Mecca

for

all

its

citizens;

its

it

is

a

it

must be so placed that they are from the main roads leading to the

The Church

no

city

must impress by monuments; and its buildings

foreigners,

the grandeur of

whom

The

easily accessible city.

aim of balancing the political forces of Europe, and the urban development of the capital came almost to a standstill after the death of Sixtus V, and the dismissal of Domenico Fontana. But the ideal did not succeed entirely in

conception of the capital city



as a visible expression

of superior and transcendent authority

and the other European only theoretically.

The

its

capitals

clearest

— now existed,

aspired to

example of

it,

if

this

of

Roman

castrum; this

its

we may

call its

"humanist"

side.

and

civil

a

The purely

state

checkerboard plan, with big regular squares, Turin kept to the plan of the original In

capital

a religious significance.

state

Italy,

for the structure of a

emphasize the authority of the Church;

this

complete

transformation in the seventeenth century. In

which was equally weak, both economically and militarily, was Rome. The new policy of equilibrium between states, which the Church now recognized formally, was based upon Rome's historical and moral prestige. For Rome was the goal of pilgrims from all the Catholic countries, and its "central position" had a political as well as of

after the

But that plan also

lent itself to military

parades, which display and emphasize the authority

of the

call its

state, just as religious

Baroque

The capital monument

ceremonies display and this

we may

side.

city, in its typically

Baroque form,

is

what Lewis Mumford calls "the ideology of power." At least two new architectonic forms were established; the street and the square. Here too the models were Roman the long Via delle Quattro Fontane designed by Fontana, and the portico of St Peter's by Bernini. They are open to



spaces, with perspectives, architectonically defined

by the fagade of the

lateral buidings.

The

fagades

no longer simply the front sides of closed volumes (i.e. of buildings), but they define the limits of empty open spaces, and are related to the street facade. The fagade is no longer regarded in terms of the building to which it belongs; it becomes a surface area which can be extended indefinitely, and where architectonic form is defined by the rhythmic succession of the windows (there are many cases of are

this

prolongation

Rome,

of

old

facades:

the

Palazzo

where the facade was almost doubled by Borromini). The urban layout now tends to be uniform and regular; but the monuments still remain, to emphasize the necessary Falconieri in

for example,

elements of "decoration."

The

great example of the city as an expression of

power" was Paris, capital of the most powerful European monarchy, and center of a state whose authority had arrogated to itself Divine Right (while at the same time carrying out a most realistic form of power politics). In the second the "ideology of

half of the seventeenth century, Christopher

uniformly are not monotonous, seem to accompany

the great architect

him on

Wren, of the reconstruction of London,

declared that "Paris

is

probably the

architecture in Europe."

on

his travels, for

to study.

Jones's

He

school of

confirmed these words

he never went to any other

Yet Pevsner

says,

Wanderjahre^ Paris

city

"At the time of Inigo was no more than a

Rome."

stopping-place on the road to

Wren, with

finest

clear

It is

was referring here less to great monumental architecture, which continued in Rome to produce exemplary works, than to civic architecture, above all to private architecture, with its utilitarian and decorative sides, which the Italian theorists of the sixteenth century that

his

remarkable

flair,

did not even consider as architecture (with the

exception of Serlio,

who

lived in France).

Thanks

primarily to Mansart, this private architecture

is

now

They may not claim his attention, but they give him the sensation of moving in his walk.

eminently

center of the city with to

move

its

tation

is

regarded as in

where great elegance city.

is

like quitting

room

all

which ostenthe worst possible taste, and

is

in

equated with great simpli-

A result of this bourgeois building, which soon

spread

all

over northern and central Europe, was

came into direct contact in his private life with the life on the street. Instead of rich and poor districts, there were elegant and humble (often squalid) streets. The severe design of this architecture, with its repetitive facades, was that the middle-class citizen

which replaced the sumptuous patrician palat^o by the hotel particulier^ created the network of communications which linked the great monumental buildings and emphasized their importance. The orderly

its

But

its

building,

its

gala finery, for a private

representative in

Bourgeois

the

a ceremonial salon filled with high officialdom in

as

planning.

leave

grandiose perspectives, and

into the bourgeois quarters,

regarded as one of the most important branches of municipal

To

surroundings.

civilized

an expression of the rising middle

architecture.

own way

influencing a

—as

monumental

values were different: comfort,

respectability, elegance in the at

as the

class

way of

education. For there

is

succession of bourgeois buildings, often linked to

bourgeois, just as there

one another, and

the

life

home. It too aimed by persuasion and

a restrained rhetoric of the is

a grandiose rhetoric of

the different designs of their sober fagades, also gave

Church and State. And in painting these two develop on parallel lines: the grand rhetoric of the

a feeling of perspective to the streets. If the great

historico-religious,

monuments cause

and the

distinct from,

one another only in

the passer-by to stop

and

stare,

these unpretentious buildings, which although aligned

small,

decorative-allegorical

painting,

subdued but always intentionally

persuasive rhetoric of the

still life

or genre painting.

1

THE CAPITAL CITY The Structure of the capital city, determined by the new political function of the State, went far to shape the seventeenth-century conception of space. In the capital

city,

modern man does not

live in

unchanging surroundings; he is caught up, rather, in a network of relations, a complex of familiar,

intersecting

perspectives,

system of communi-

a

cations, a ceaseless play of

movements and counter-

movements. His position in this articulated space, whose limits are beyond his ken, is at once central and peripheral; similarly, on the "world stage," the individual is at once protagonist and supernumerary.

The

social

influences underlying this

new

space

have been analyzed in masterly fashion by Lewis

Mumford

in The Culture of Cities

(New York,

1938).

"Behind the immediate interests of the new capitalism, with its abstract love of money and power, a change in the entire conceptual framework took place. And first: a new conception of space. It was one of the great triumphs of the baroque

mind

to organize space,

make

it

continuous, reduce

to measure

and order, to extend the Umits of magnitude, embracing the extremely distant and the

it

extremely minute;

motion.

.

.

"The centraUzation of

authority necessitated the

creation of the capital city

power

to associate space with

finally,

.

.

.

in the political capital

The

consolidation of

was accompanied by

1

THE CAPITAL CITY The structure of the capital city, determined by the new political function of the State, went far to shape the seventeenth-century conception of space. In the capital

city,

modern man does not

live in

unchanging surroundings; he is caught up, rather, in a network of relations, a complex of

familiar,

intersecting

perspectives,

system of communi-

a

cations, a ceaseless play of

movements and counter-

movements. His position in this articulated space, whose limits are beyond his ken, is at once central and peripheral; similarly, on the "world stage," the individual is at once protagonist and supernumerary.

The

social

influences

underlying this

new

space

have been analyzed in masterly fashion by Lewis

Mumford

in The Culture of Cities

(New York,

1958).

"Behind the immediate interests of the new capitalism, with its abstract love of money and power, a change in the entire conceptual framework took place. It

And

first:

a

new conception of

space.

was one of the great triumphs of the baroque

mind

to organize space,

make

it

continuous, reduce

to measure

and order, to extend the limits of magnitude, embracing the extremely distant and the

it

extremely minute;

motion.

"The

.

.

centralization of authority necessitated the

creation of the capital city

power

to associate space with

finally,

.

.

.

in the political capital

The

consolidation of

was accompanied by

power and initiative in the local centers: prestige meant the death of local municipal

a loss of national

freedom

.

.

.

After the sixteenth century, accordingly,

the cities that increased

most rapidly

in population

and area and wealth were those that harbored a royal court: the fountainhead of economic power. About a dozen towns quickly reached a size not attained in the Middle Ages even by a bare handful: presently

London had 250,000

inhabitants, Naples 240,000,

Milan over 200,000, Palermo and Rome, 100,000, etc.



"Law, order, uniformity all these are special products of the baroque capital: but the law exists to confirm the status and secure the position of the privileged classes, the order

is

a mechanical order,

based not upon blood or neighborhood or kindred purposes and affections but upon subjection to the ruling prince; and as for the uniformity



it

is

the

uniformity of the bureaucrat, with his pigeonholes, his dossiers, his red tape, his

numerous devices

for

regulating and systematizing the collection of taxes.

The

means of enforcing this pattern of life lies in the army; its economic arm is mercantile capitalist policy and its most typical institutions are the standing army, the bourse, the bureaucracy, and the court. There is an underlying harmony that pervades all these institutions: between them they create a new form for social life the baroque city "Not alone did the new fortifications remove the suburbs and gardens and orchards too far from the city to be reached conveniently except by the wealthier classes who could afford horses: open spaces within were rapidly built over as population was driven from the outlying land by fear and disaster, or by pressure of enclosure and landmonopoly. This new congestion led to the destruction of medieval standards of building space even in some of the cities that kept their medieval form and had preserved them longest "Power became synonymous with numbers. *The external

;



.

.

greatness of a

city,'

walls, but the multitude

site

.

.

Botero observed,

not the largeness of the

and

.

.

'is

said to be,

or the circuit of the

and number of inhabitants

their power.'

"Capitalism in

its

turn became militaristic

.

.

.

Do

not underestimate the presence of a garrison as a

UNKNOWN master:

POPE SIXTUS v's PLAN OF

CHRISTOPHER WREN: PROJECT FOR THE RECONSTRUCTION OF LONDON, 1666. ALL SOULS COLLEGE, OXFORD.

39

,

1589- FRESCO IN

THE SALA

SISTINA,

VATICAN LIBRARY, ROME.

FILIPPO JUVARRA:

40

the PIAZZA SAN CARLO

IN TURIN, I72I. PRINT.

MUSEO CIVICO, TURIN.

TURGOT's plan of PARIS: THE BASTILLE AND THE PLACE ROY ALE.

TURGOT's PLAN OF PARIS: THE INVALIDES.

city-building agent drill

.

.

.

Along with

the barracks and

grounds, which occupy such large

big capitals, go the arsenals

.

The army

.

.

sites in

the

barracks

have almost the same place in the baroque order that the monastery had in the medieval one; and

Grounds

the Parade

Paris, for instance

—the new

—were

as

Champ

conspicuous

drilling, parading,

out the guard,

de Mars in .

.

.Turning

became one of the

great mass spectacles for the increasingly servile

populace: the blare of the bugle, the tattoo of the

drum, were as characteristic a sound for this new phase of urban life as the tolling of the bells had been for the medieval town. The laying out of great Viae Triumphales, avenues where a victorious army could march with the

maximum

was an inevitable step

spectator,

new

effect

upon

the

in the replanning

and Berlin "The avenue is the most important symbol and the main fact about the baroque city. Not always was it possible to design a whole new city in the baroque mode; but in the layout of half a dozen new avenues, of the

.

.

.

new quarter, its character could be reThe military parade had its feminine

or in a defined

capitals: notably in Paris

.

.

.

counterpart in the capital: the shopping parade

The old open market, while from the

it

.

.

.

did not disappear

of the Western World, henceforth

cities

was only in the poorer quarters, like the Jews' market in Whitechapel, that one could still pick up a dress, a pair of trousers The display market for goods already made, rather than produced on the order system, had already come into existence: from the restricted itself largely to provisions

.

.

it

:

.

seventeenth century on,

it

gradually encroached into

one Une after another, hastening the tempo of sale and placing a premium upon the visual enticement of the buyer

.

.

.

"The new plan distinguished

itself

from the older

medieval accretions by the use of straight Unes, regular block units, and as far as possible uniform

dimensions and the

new

roundpoint with

radiating streets

;

cutting

its

impartially

gridirons."

order

is

symbolized in the

and avenues,

through old tangles or new

THE MONUMENT

The

idea of the

architectural

monument

of values

representative

unit,

and and

a sculptural

as

authority, having therefore a rhetorical or persuasive

function,

connected with the idea of the capital

is

city, just as the latter is

the absolute State.

The monument forms within

generally at the center of a vast area laid

as to give as

it

prominence. The idea of the

an expression of ideological values

classical one,

of the

faithful,

or rather the union of Christians,

formed the body of the Church, and did not only watch the religious rite, but took part in it.

connected with the idea of

capital city a nucleus of the highest prestige, is

propaganda, but based on the idea that the community

is

The long nave added by Maderna undoubtedly

the

and it out so

monument basically a

destroyed

the

dramatic

it

also prolonged

the basilica into the urban area, thereby developing the urban function of the

its

The typical monument is the Basilica of St Peter's in Rome, whose construction, which is inseparable from the development of the ideological theme,

of Michelangelo's

tumultuous mass of masonry, but

by adding the colonnade

revived in the sixteenth century.

unity

monument. Later

to the church,

Bernini,

and studying

connection with the municipal center, carried

even further forward the notion of the monument not only as the pivot, but as a vital center in the municipal complex.

lasted throughout the sixteenth century, reaching its

highest point in the design of Michelangelo,

who

the

summed up in synthetic and symbolic form of the cupola. From

the

first

made

the building an organic whole

designs of Bramante until the completion of

the building, the history of the construction of this

"monument of monuments" wavered between two building demands which had to be reconciled: on the one hand, a desire to

make

a representative

it

symbol, and on the other, a functional requirement

which, in the

last resort,

because the religious

rite,

was

with

also representative

its

spectacular setting

and pageantry, was not only a means but the very substance of the cult. This double intention was already evident in Bramante's designs.

He

unified

the symbolic and the religious function in his synthesis

of a central and a longitudinal plan, which

were inspired respectively by the temple and the basilica

of the

classical past.

In his vast project

What

however appeared

Early

when

in the

at

the

height

of the



and,

and co-ordinated

working

Baroque period, reverted to and developed in the open space of the colonnade, was the form and symbolism of Michelangelo's cupola. The latter is opened out and amplified in the colonnade, just as its original symbolic meaning is amplified by the more accessible allegorical meaning of Bernini's square. The sym.bol, whose esoteric significance could only be grasped by the initiated, was, by being changed into an allegory, transformed into a demonstrative statement. But the closed form of the round cupola closed in a plastic and symbolic sense is implicit, even visually, in the open and elliptical form of the colonnade, whose allegorical purpose, shown in one of Bernini's designs, was to form the arms of an ideal body, of which the cupola was the head. The universal embrace of the Church was therefore the preparation for a supreme revelation

Michelangelo again united the two functions, which distinct

Bernini,



when we remem.ber Christian

basilicas

that the portico of the

was

destined

for

the

by the

catechumens awaiting baptism, it is a clear allusion to the people who had not yet been admitted into

long nave designed by Maderna. This decision was

the Christian Church, but were preparing to enter

made

it.

final

phase of construction,

central unit

was extended on the

at the height

this last solution

Michelangelo's

east side

of the Counter-Reformation, and

used the basilica as an instrument for

influencing the masses, not without an element of

In designing his cupola, Michelangelo was con-

which Brunelleschi Fiore in Florence, and

sciously vying with the cupola

had added to Santa Maria del

which Alberti had described

as "spacious

enough

to

cover the heads of the entire Tuscan population."

But Michelangelo was determined to give his cathedral a higher ideological value than that of Arnolfo di Cambio's cathedral, which was an expression of the

community

of the Florentines. Michel-

spirit

and the artist intended that his cupola should be worthy of this end. Bernini intended that the Church should angelo aimed

open With

embracing

at

all

Christians,

arms to contain the whole of humanity. this allegorical content the "type-monument" its

ing to the

Roman

theorist Bellori,

the primary

is

was less appreciated in France where architecture became above all a form of public quality of the artist,

service; there the "universal" imagination gave place

to the "social" imagination. Mansart,

Perrault were above

all

Le Vau, and

highly qualified technical

bureaucrats for

whom

vailed over

other considerations, and

all

the advantages of utility pre-

who

did

not trouble themselves with "higher" ideals impossible of fulfillment in this world.

For

this reason,

reconciles both authority and persuasion and does

French Baroque architecture was not concerned with giving form to a universal conception of the State.

so under three aspects: as a unitary plastic form,

At

since

it is

intended to reveal the universality of an

ideal value; as

an allegorical form, since

it

not only

and opens out, develops and

alludes to but explains the ideological theme; as

an urban form, since

articulates the "holy"

of a "holy"

it

monument

in the living space

renewed the classical types but in order to adapt them to practical necessities, it created an architecture in keeping with the demands least in

it

;

of public administration. In Spain and in Southern

Naples and

city.

theory

Sicily, the

particularly in

Italy,

pomp of sculptural

or pictorial

ornament was exaggerated; but no attempt was made

summons

Bernini's

reveals that Louis

to Paris to redesign the

XIV

Louvre

intended to give his

own

residence a representative and ideological value similar to that

of the great

Roman monument. But he

The result was a work of great richness, but one whose aim seems to be to overwhelm and impose upon to deal with fundamental structural problems.

the spectator rather than to persuade him.

phenomenon

It is

under-

was dealing here with a royal palace and not with a basilica; and the ideological allegory of Bernini was inapplicable to the purely poHtical theme. The failure of Bernini's project was not due to the King,

found in socially and economically backward countries, where authority took advantage of religious fanaticism in order to oppose any form of progress which might

who

be considered

highly appreciated the designs of the Italian

master, nor to Bernini himself,

who agreed on several

occasions to modify his plan, always

what we would

call

on the

lines

of

today a "demythification" of his

standable that this

politically

ritual

took on a

festive character;

elaborate decoration

is

"governmental" architecture, the King built

at

form of "court" architecture, the building which was destined to have far-reaching Versailles, in the

consequences.

however, that in France, as incidentally in Piedmont and a little later in Germany, It

is

significant,

should

architecture

"governmental academies

and

have

been

considered

as

a

art,"

organized

through

official

the

bureaucratic

careers

of the

architects themselves,

who

henceforth were part of

the apparatus of State, obeying the State's directions for buildings

explains

why

which were

ostentation

till

over-

illusion,

or

way

the

of a troop

of soldiers in uniform, on guard at the palace. Against this

influence

monument has than demonstration, more sug-

gestion than persuasion.

more

and

no more than an

ferred the solemn alignment of Perrault's colonnade effect

To

public feeling in this way, the ceremonial and the

a fiction, of richness. In this

—an alignment which produces the

to be

dangerous.

The responsibility Ues with a government which, on the specious grounds of economy, pre-

forms.

is

largely utilitarian. This

the imaginative faculty which, accord-

In contrast to

this,

we find in England, after Crom-

well's revolution, if not before, a break

between the

monarchy, discredited by the insubordination of the feudal and landowning aristocracy, and a social and political reality which witnessed the transfer of the control of the country's economy to the middle classes, who were soon to undertake the great task of transforming everything into industrial production. Undoubtedly St Paul's dominated the urban plan of the commercial and financial center of London, just as its extremely high dome dominates the municipal landscape in an authoritarian manner. But there is no ideological aim behind it; if this imposing church impresses us, it is due to its purely secular ideals.

The conception of the monument as

form of the historical and ideological values on which traditional authority was based was responsible not only for the structure of the churches and palat(j^i\ the urban plan itself, whether rectilinear or starshaped, was regarded as a monumental symbol, quite apart from its function as a means of setting out the buildings in "monumental" perspective. The geoa visible

metrical regularity of the layout of Turin, after

the worshippers, even confessionals,

which are in themselves monumental ornaments. The altars have something in common with the doorway; they are framed by orders of columns, surmounted by one or more tympana, and give access as it were to the imaginary space of the tabernacle or reredos. In St Peter's, in Santa

Maria

della Vittoria, in the altar

of the Blessed Albertoni in San Francesco a Ripa,

its

Bernini defines the space behind the altar as a part

reconstruction in the Baroque period, reflects the

of heaven, where the miraculous apparition takes

contemporary desire to resurrect the Roman castrum plan, as much as to produce a piece of orderly town

place in a supernatural light, unconnected with the

Hght of the

rest

of the church.

planning.

Bernini had a

The big

squares and principal streets were delibe-

planned on a monumental

rately

example of

Rome.

in

this is to

Its

scale.

A

typical

be seen in the Piazza Navona

dimensions and perimeter can be traced

back to the Circus Agonalis of Roman times; and its designers, Rainaldi, Borromini and Bernini, were influenced

clearly

by

historical

its

associations.

flair

regarded a funerary rical

and he

for theatrical effects,

monument

as a

form of

representation or "triumph," an excuse

the Baldachin of St Peter's



allegoas

with

— for transforming a place

of burial into a grandiose monument, with the aid

of imperishable materials. Implicit in

his

notion of

monumental tomb was a double, and seemingly contradictory, meaning; on the one hand, sorrow the

Bernini, the creator of the great "Fountain of the

at the

Rivers " in the center, gave

life,

departure of

its illustrious

tenant from this

and rocks) with allegorical elements (the statues), and with the palm (which is both a symbolic and a

and on the other, joy at his arrival in heaven. This allegorical theme naturally required the presence of many figurative and architectural elements for an allegory tends to enlarge or generalize the

naturalistic motif).

event

an historical-allegorical

by uniting natural elements

quality,

If

it

we

agree that the

as

city,

regarded as a monument,

it

is

an

(the waterfalls

entity,

can be

clear that

special

importance must be attached to the means of entry. Its

gates are

no longer merely openings

in the walls,

but symbols of its illustrious past, having something in

common

with the triumphal arch of

classical

times. Further, they symbolize the distinction (which

was becoming

daily

more

evident)

between the

country or suburb, and the center, or historical nucleus, of the city.

The

social structure

was chang-

and a clear distinction between the city-dweller, whatever his class or income, and the countryman was appearing.

ing,

The notion of the monument soon became

and began to influence the decoornaments and furnishing of civil as well as

of everyday ration,

life

we

find

monu-

staircases, galleries

and

salons.

religious buildings. In the pala^i,

mental courtyards,

They

a part

no longer simply the homes of the ruling classes, but a part of the ceremony and ritual of an ostentatious social order. The churches now possess altars, pulpits, funeral monuments, organs, pews for are

it

It is

depicts.

easy to understand

how

this

monumental

form, which became increasingly connected with

and way of life of the seventeenth century, soon spread throughout Europe. The taste for the monumental, with its reference to the classical past, the habits

suited the ruling classes, as divinely

who

regarded themselves

ordained to exercise authority and power.

The "grand manner" (which

is

extension of the notion of the

no more than an

monument

to

all

domains of art) thus became identified with the which tastes and culture of the conservative class in turn explains why the middle classes began to produce, in rivalry, their own particular form of art. It is because the monument now became a class symbol that we see, for the first time, specific aspirations, tastes, even ideologies, being identified with



different social classes.

The problem linking Baroque architecture with an attempt to make authority and power visible in a monument is even more acute in the peripheral zones of the Catholic world, in the colonial architecture of Mexico, Brazil and Peru. In the pagan or

recently

converted countries of the

New

World,

persuasion was a form of propaganda, and the pro-

blem was to explain the doctrine and morals of the Catholic Church by using the imagery of the natives as much as possible, and by asking them to be its interpreters; for in general the missionaries did no more than provide a summary plan of churches to be built, while the construction and decoration were left to local artists. The "contamination" of pagan and Christian iconography has nothing paradoxical

The Baroque

and decoration in Latin America are exactly the reverse of what we find in the "monument." Their forms have no metaphysical architecture

import, they reveal no transcendental values, symbolic meanings.

Here allegory

and exaltation of the lar fiesta,

is

fable or apologue,

belongs only to the popu-

spirit

while religious education can be carried out

only through songs and dances. The sacred icono-

graphy of Christianity is, for the most part, a travesty of pagan imagery. In this way, the popular and

are concerned. Apart

which was quite spontaneous in the craftsmen, was retained, thanks to Baroque

motifs, a free

design, together with a kind of elementary joy, a

in

it,

at least in so far as the less

natives.

important themes

from one or two symbolical hand in decoration was given to the

They used

this privilege to

cover the interior

and the exterior of the buildings with a profusion of colors, of gold and images, which often portrayed the barely concealed survival of a pagan cult based upon the offering of flowers, fruits and votive objects.

traditional ebullience,

feeling of liberation

when

contrasted with the night-

mares of an archaic, oppressive and bloody religion.

However

indirect this contact

the culture of the West,

it

art recalling all the variety

may have been with

gave birth to a popular

and color of folklore.

THE MONUMENTAL

The sense of the monumental historical-ideological

is

character

connected with the of the

monument

in the imagination or intellect of

that

one man alone,

created and ripens slowly in the collective

it is

and with those accumulated values which are to be found in the capital city but it has a far wider range and gives rise to almost limidess phenomena,

the buildings, he wished simply to harmonize these

with an immense variety of aspects. The idea of the

place of Michelangelo's transept, the longitudinal

monument, which took form

position of the nave of

itself,

;

tury, especially

in the sixteenth cen-

with Michelangelo,

is

inspired by

the humanist conception of the statue as the trans-

position or evocation of a "memorable" figure, in

keeping with the universal view of history. The statue

is

also a monimentum, that

is

to say an object

and designates in a past which is already "historical" a model or example to the present and the future. When Bramante, in designing the new basilica of St Peter's, sought to make it a "monument," he wanted to give tangible plastic form to an idea, but he based his design on the Pantheon and

which

recalls

the Constantinian basilica because history alone able to sanction the universal

of an idea.

To

express the

is

and imperishable value

monumental

in the seven-

teenth century meant to express oneself in a universal

manner, that

is

with a feeling for grandeur and

consciousness. In his plan for the final complex of

and even contradictory ideas

different

rectilinear fagade),

Maderna closed

but to order

shippers; the long nave the worshippers

who

for those

mystical

place for those

who

wait,

own

which on

its

cannot lead to the universality of the grand

manner. This

is

always, and cannot be otherwise

are persuaded,

who

is

the

look to the future

and are themselves the future of the Church. The intersection of the nave and transept is covered with the ideal Platonic heaven of the cupola; but above the open space of the colonnade is the "natural" cupola of the physical sky, because humanity which

which

a unilateral experience,

who

body of the Church; the colonnade

ther in painting, in sculpture, or in architecture) it

the space set aside for

is

represent the present reality of the

Lastly, the

with

these solutions in

all

and for those

what was called throughout Europe the "grand style." But every artistic undertaking (whe-

carries

by the

which was to be more ideological than spatial. The cupola, which is a symbol of supreme spiritual authority, defines the space where the ritual takes place, enacted by those who are invested with the authority to guide and persuade the wor-

awaits the revelation here

fact

off

a perspective

with scorn for the "detailed" or modest: to follow in

(the central

in a state of nature.

is still

form of the monument

is

the meeting

place in the present for the authority of history, is

transmitted by the

memory

of the expe-

and for the possibilities of the future, which belong to the imagination. The arbitrariness of this prototype is corrected by imagining rience of the past,

than, the result of a convergence or meeting (but

the future as history or anticipated

not of a synthesis a priori) of painting, sculpture

way, the past too

is

memory; in this imagined rather than remem-

and architecture.

bered, because

is

none other than the desired

it

form of future events. During the development of the problems raised by the construction of the new St Peter's, the theme of the

monument broadened

to that of a feeling for

the monumental; this can be seen in the

way

Bernini,

while creating his colonnade, transformed Michelangelo's symbolical motif of the cupola into an

But he did something more. He felt that the monumental value of a building cannot be born allegory.

The normal language of allegory. It

is

the

not allegory as

it

"monumental" is was imagined in explaining mean-

humanism, and which consists in ings which are hidden beneath the appearance of the phenomenon or of the image; the problem here is to translate abstract conceptions into visible form.

Because

it

is

universal, the conception expresses

itself in

extremely generalized images situated in a

universal

space,

and in an indeterminate time.

this

presupposes that the process of

Moreover, allegory is

a

is

allegory

fiction,

is,

properly speaking,

which, basically,

fiction of art

find artistic creations

all

is

which can be

allegory.

allegory even

their conceptual

if

The

content

and

his action will

sions he abandons himself to fiction; he confers

We

the action a

not

"monumental" or

Because history it

with the more immediate space and time, connected life,

in the Farnese Palace, for example, are of the allegory

The imagination,

as

because they represent scenes taken from

historical character.

ceases to be merely a study of the past, and deals

with the practical

type,

on

an act of the imagination,

is itself

frescoes of Annibale Carracci

precisely stated.

century, could only

We

with morals, and

defined

become

seventeenth

the

in

and

a political

have already seen

politics.

how

social

Ovid's Metamorphoses and therefore have a natural-

imagination.

istic-mythological content; here the process of alle-

ance of this imagination, this ability to think of the

inseparable from that of the fiction of

world and oneself beyond the data of the present and the real, is a fundamental character of the Baroque political outlook.

gorization art.

The

is

different parts of the pictorial presentation

which

are distributed in architectonic frames

monochrome herms

decorated with

are

Here we have a clear distinction between, and combination of, the three arts: painting, sculpture,

The

architecture.

setting

is

simulated architecture,

the caryatids are simulated sculpture, the scenes are quadri

that

riportati,

in frescoes.

paintings

easel

is,

imitated

almost a set program in which

It is

art imitates art, or

more

precisely, art imitates the

imagination. But imagination already possesses an element, because

artistic

always a means of

is

it

To

in everyone late

;

but

it is

only the

all,

who

can trans-

would be simply

a

technique capable of revealing a process of the mind; the representation of a representation. But

Tasso also

said,

does not discover,

creates everything, nothing

is

Annibale

and

categorical limits,

became

tion

"monumental" tends

a

manner of life,

it is

how

the imagina-

enough

decorations

Carracci's

in

to

to

compare

the

Farnese

Gallery with the great vault painted about thirty

by Pietro da Cortona in the Barberini Here too the "monumental" stems from a

years later Palace.

combination of the three arts

;

here again

effects peculiar to

we have

each of the

simulated architecture

simply frames for the different scenes; they are

artist

art

all

the

or smaller degree,

images created in the imagination into visible

images. If this were

surpass

how

and simulated sculpture. But the total effect of the ensemble is pictorial; the sculptures seem to come to life, and the architectural parts are no longer

the data of direct experience.

exists, to a greater

understand

beyond

creating images, of extending mental activity

Imagination

the import-

acting as carya-

tids.

it

as

art,

creates ("art

discovered"); and

if

broken up by figures

in

movement, by

clusters of

flowers, vegetation, clouds. In the paintings of the

Farnese Gallery, nature has entered only as a comple-

ment to the mythological figures, acting background to a poetically imagined

as a classical

scene; here

imagination has produced a second nature, in which trees, figures, clouds, architecture are all

seen in a

which cannot be manner of imagining is

more ample, indeed almost limitless, dimension. But in the work of Cortona there is something new;

already conditioned by the necessity of manifesting

painting can imitate arcliitecture and sculpture, and

the

represents

artist

nothing

depicted in credible form, his

itself

through the medium of

shows

art.

imagination

means of imagination is transof creation and that, therefore,

is

connected with

fluencing conduct, even morals. for this

which

In a word, art

that a certain

lated into an act

is

is

that

it

human action, inThe only condition

passes through artistic creation,

basically the fact of the imagination.

using his imagination, the extent of his

own

man

By

can assess in advance

action.

intention into a time and space

58

style,

the

of an is

grand

temporal enlargement. In using these greater dimen-

called "allegory

types," because they have the appearance

on the level of the benefit by this spatial-

places his artistic imagination

art

and because

a typical process of art,

than those of the present and the immediate, he

By

projecting his

which

are greater

does

so,

but

it

cannot

(which are

arts

all

itself

be imitated.

"mimesis," that

is

Among

imitation),

the it is

power of imitation; one which most directly

painting which has the greatest it

is

the senior art, the

makes the imagination visible. (Pietro da Cortona was also an architect, indeed a greater architect than painter; but his architecture has pictorial roots, and

we

tend to see

it

in pictorial images.) Because the

aim of art is to make the imagination perceptible, and because painting has, as far as principal

perception

is

concerned, greater possibilities, the

"visual" values of painting, in the

first

place colors,

must be accentuated. This was the contention of Rubens who, when he was working in the first years of the seventeenth century in Rome, had a profound influence on the formation of the Baroque, and specifically on Bernini and Cortona. In this way we can understand how Baroque art, which was born in Rome, was so quick to take advantage of the experience of the Venetian colorists

decade of the century, the

that, after the third

of Baroque

—to the extent home

may be said to be, with Longhi, The only difference is that color was

art

neo- Venetian.

no longer subordinated to the principles of equilibrium and symmetry, no longer kept within the "natural" limits which had been respected by sixteenth-century painting, even by the highly emotional

now

is

art

of the great Venetian masters. Color

deployed to the

full, intensified,

"monumentalized," simply because,

if

heightened,

imagination

something which goes beyond reality, the embodiment of its images must go beyond the norms of

is

We may

visual experience.

perceive something tally,

new

is

therefore say that to

not only to register

but to be solicited by

it;

the

men-

it

mind must

create

systems of reference adapted to the perception

of objects which are no longer "natural," but ficial

products of man.

the true activity of

but beyond, nature;

From

man no it

is

this

it

arti-

follows that

longer takes place

inside,

obvious that society, the

grouping of men for common aims, is the great conquest beyond the "natural condition."

an illusory prolongation of the architecture of the

The

wide open; beyond a huge impluvium, the sky extends, peopled with angels and church.

saints

ceiling

is

adoring the rays of Christ's monogram. This

is

which inhabits another space, beyond the society of Uving humans and the terrestrial space. That this is so, is proved by the fact that some of the figures, suspended on the limits of the another

society

cornice or climbing over

it,

aspire to

mount

into

that celestial space; while others, the wicked, are

down. It is worth noting that the light emanates from the monogram of Christ, which is a symbol, but that it falls and creates a shadow as natural light would. Between the physical space, the allegorical space, and the symbolical space, is a continuity and a progression as between terrestrial life and life beyond the earth. This is the thesis of communication, or of the "ladder," which St Francis of Sales opposed to the Protestant thesis of man's utter inability to communicate with God. Pozzo on repulsed and

fall

the other hand, in the ceiling

of the church of

Sant'Ignazio, again represents architecture in perspective; but this

no longer has any connection with

the architecture of the church. Henceforth the society

of the elect has

its

house,

its

palace and

its

court in

heaven, quite distinct from the space and the architecture of the society of the living,

and more splen-

obeying the same laws of perspective, the same visual logic. It is a visible and plausible view of the world beyond the horizon of experience. did, but

first

This "sense of the monumental" in Baroque

art

none other than the limitless extension of representation into near and distant space, in a time which is at once past, present and future. And clearly is

The

ceiling paintings in the

church of the Gesia,

and in SantTgnazio, by Pozzo, are respectively forty and sixty years later than Pietro da Cortona's Glorification of the Reign of Urban VIII in

by

Gaulli,

by Gaulli, we find of illusionism, not even in the sense of

the Barberini Palace. In the

no

trace

first,

nature, as

much

dimension. This

as history, is a part is

why we

monumental in landscapes, in

of this limitless

also find the sense of the portraits,

sometimes even

still lifes.

59

E.G.

8

NICOLAS POUSSIN (1594-1665). THE FINDING OF MOSES, 1638. LOUVRE, PARIS

60

POUSSIN

MAZ20NI

LE BRUN

The monumental

need not necessarily he grandiose, imposing

style

or theatrical. In spite of

small si^e and the absence of rhetorical the Finding of Moses by Nicolas Poussin is a monumental

effects,

painting; this tatis, as

is so

its

because the scene

is

represented

a natural miracle which, repeated of a

religious significance

rite.

With

sub specie aeterni-

cyclically,

has taken on the

and measured gestures, as

precise

if dictated by the rules of a cult, her handmaidens stand in a circle

around Pharaoh's daughter, like acolytes around a celebrant. The evokes the myth of the Nile. The river

manner by

the

man

cornucopia allude

it

The

distant city.

personified in the classical

lying on the ground, while the water

to

its

periodic inundations

The landscape,

fertility of the earth.

lucent clarity,

is

too, is

rite

and

the

monumental:

far and

the

ever renewed in its trans-

has something of the balanced architecture of the

limpid and firm, without any tonal shading

colors are

or shrillness ; they seem to be carved out by the light, and vibrate on the surface of the painting as on a sheet of water stirred by a breeze.

In Jephthah's Sacrifice^ Sehastiano Ma'^^oni achieves monumentality in the contrary to

expand

way : by movement, and by using perspective

the picture space

architectural

with

setting,

and its

devices

accentuate the lighting effects.

perspective foreshortenings

and

The the

arcades in the background sharply outlined against the light, promotes the

movement of

marked

the figures, which is rhythmically accentuated by the

differences in si'^e

between near and distant figures, by the

interlinking gestures of the agitated groups, in which they move.

The

and

brawl around a country to

Domenichino and

Le Brun, figures

effect is frankly theatrical.

the flashing lights

Charles

Le Brun,

Moses and the Daughters of Jethro,

on the other hand, in given a monumental

and by

historical quality

well.

The

to

has

a simple shepherds'

inspiration of this picture goes back

his conception of the "historical style." But, with

the effect of monumentality is achieved by transforming the

and



their gestures into "types" of emotion

To monumentalise, for him, means to or generalise ; so that even an anecdote can be made

ment, scorn, rage, fear. characteri':(e

curiosity, ama'^^e-

history if it is related according to the rules of the

deinto

"grand manner."

SAMUEL

SEBASTIANO MAZZONI (l 6 1 I -1 678). JEPHTH Ah's SACRIFICE, ABOUT 165O. COLLECTION, WILLIAM ROCKHILL NELSON GALLERY, KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI.

H. KRESS

E. C. lo

CHARLES LE BRUN (1619-1690). MOSES DEFENDING THE DAUGHTERS OF JETHRO,

l686. GALLERIA ESTENSE,

MODENA.

GUERCINO

BERNINI

In i6i j Guido Reni had painted his Aurora on the vault of the Casino Rospigliosi, following Annihale Carracci's method of the

quadro riportato ; actually designed as

same theme on

ivhat

we have,

an easel picture. In 1621 Guercino dealt with the Casino Ludovisi, but applied the

the ceiling of the

opposite principle

in other words, is a fresco painting

of naturalistic illusionism, setting the subject in

an architecturalframework seen against the open sky. Guercino 's theme is the

same mythological fable, but

it is

depicted as a kind of natural

prodi^. Here, in the open sky between the great pillars of a vault which has fallen clouds.

This

is

in, the chariot

illusion is not only visual

make

Dawn

rides triumphantly across the

not a reversion to some classical theme, but a wholly

unexpected apparition whose

pillars

of

effect is

cause intense

to

emotion.

The

but psychological; for if the three foreshortened

the viewer feel the depth of the sky, the shattered pillar

on the lower right shows that the vault has fallen in and thus explains

why

the apparition is visible

from

within the building. Since the picture

space is no longer illusionist but imaginary, the naturalistic motifs ( trees, clouds) only is,

make

more

the apparition

in fact, presented as occurring not

convincing.

beyond

The

prodig)!

but within nature.

Three years later Bernini created the psychological illusion of the Baldachin in St Peter 's

—a small portable

object inordinately enlarged.

The shafts are twisted bronze columns which spiral up the heavy festoons

seem

to

Piaq^^^a

and

tremble as if stirred by the wind. The great

cavity of Michelangelo's cupola appears above, like the vault of

into space,

immense and boundless

Heaven. Later, in the Fountain of the Rivers in the

Navona, Bernini carried

Not

even further.

illusionism

only

do the waters pouring from the fountain introduce an intense feeling of nature into a city square, but the rocks and countries

and exotic landscape

in

the distant

which the rivers personified at the

base of the fountain have their source.

For

Bernini, allegofy

process of the imagination ; the images of the

as the faces of nature, and allegory

palms evoke

is

human mind are

is therefore

a natural as infinite

nothing more than a

way

of discovering the possible meanings of reality.

65

E. C. 12

GIAN LORENZO BERNINI

66

(l

5

98-1680).

THE BALDACHIN OVER THE HIGH ALTAR OF

ST PETEr's,

ROME, 1624-1633.

GIAN LORENZO BERNINI (1598-1680). THE FOUNTAIN OF THE RIVERS IN THE PIAZZA NAVONA, ROME, 1648-165I.

E. C. 13

67

IMAGINATION AND ILLUSION

where he says

was so important,

we can imagine as possible, probable or credible only things which we know have already happened:

was reduced in the seventeenth century to a specialized branch of painting and practised as a kind of handicraft? Obviously because,

But the

in the great arc of the imagination, illusionist paint-

jALristotle

is

explicit in the Poetics,

that

the imagination thus has

its

basis in history.

precise repetition of an event is

improbable, and

is

a particular case, whereas the object of poetry

the universal. If the representation

is

is

to be universal

and not particular, the event must not repeat itself by chance, but as a result of certain laws of probability and necessity. The laws of the drama are not logical, they are not dependent on cause and effect. If they were and if, given a certain situation, we were able to foretell the events which would follow, these events would have little effect on the spectator, nor would they be able to arouse in him any feelings of terror and pity the feelings that drama must arouse (terror at what surpasses his imagination; pity for himself and others). The law of necessity exists from the outset in the mind of the artist and



establishes the design of his

work

(it is

an

eike)

;

but

ing

is

it

only a small sector or, more precisely, an

optical or physical

moment

ment

whole

affecting the

in a process of develop-

field

of

human

thought.

In his Aurora (1613), in the Casino Rospigliosi,

Guido Reni

rigidly applied the principle laid

by the Carracci, that fresco

is

art

should imitate

down

art:

his

a quadro riportato, an easel picture transferred

to the ceiling. Guercino, in his Aurora (1621) in

the Casino Ludovisi, attempted to surpass Reni by

employing another form of illusion, more psychological than optical, though it too is based on visual data. Certain visual effects may have a coherence which means more than formal logic: Reni wishes to demonstrate the Aristotelian thesis of "pleasure in imitation," while

Guercino uses imitation

as a

notion forms an integral part of Baroque aesthetics.

means of emotional suggestion. Guercino's chariot of the Dawn riding on a cloud is obviously absurd

We

but the color harmonies, the strong chiaroscuro

the spectator recognizes

find

it,

it

only a

posteriori.

This

for example, in Reni's Massacre of the

where the two themes,

terror,

of the clouds, the light and dark patches on the

are balanced almost architecturally, establishing the

dappled coats of the horses have a visual coherence

Aristotelian unity of time and place, while the angels

which makes the viewer accept unquestioningly what his sense of logic tells him is absurd. Guercino's solution is more "naturalistic" than Reni's. The

Innocents,

pity

descending from heaven indicate the

and

moment of

catharsis.

mythical chariot

The

transition of the artistic imagination

from

the true to the probable or possible can be traced in the spatial or,

more

exactly, optical illusionism

which was already widely practised century.

tury

Not

in the sixteenth

for nothing did the seventeenth cen-

develop and exploit

all

the

possibiUties

of

is

seen rolling swiftly across the

and by showing that one of the pillars is broken the painter tries to suggest that the vault too has fallen in, thus leaving the open sky visible. sky,

To

obtain psychological coherence the painter has

thus had to break up the logical coherence of the

four converging

pillars.

which moreover was no longer regarded as a method of construction, but only as a means of representing space. In Bologna there arose

sion of space

a school of perspective painters, the quadraturisti

the remote distance does not

perspective,

painters

who



specialized in illusionist decorations

based on the virtuoso use of perspective and foreshortening.

We may ask ourselves why, if illusionism

In

many

seventeenth-century paintings the exten-

from the immediate foreground into

mean only

sive diminution in the size of things a

change

;

it

a

progres-

also involves

in the quality of things. Certain objects

conspicuous in the foreground are depicted with such

seems almost possible to reach out and touch them; while above, in the clouds, are the figures of saints and angels. It is the tangibility of

founded on a reversal of our usual notions of things. We normally think of a building and a processional

which makes the miraculous vision of the second credible. In the moral sphere, it is our direct experience of the real world which enables us to believe in things that transcend reality; and this often by contrast, for it is the cares of daily life

other.

realism that

the

it

first

baldachin as being out of

A

all

propordon

to each

building reduced in size merely gives the

onlooker a sense of being cramped.

A

baldachin

greatly enlarged compels the onlooker to alter

and

extend the scale of sizes to which his eye is accustomed. This is the effect Bernini sought to obtain.

that predispose us to believe in the eternal bliss

The

of the hereafter.

of the seventeenth century

art

was intended to take

moral rather than sphere. Space and time are elastic

the intellectual

effect in the

rather than limitless; their extent

continually changing.

and duration are

In a painting such as

the

The

artist recognizes, then, that all scales

He

and that space has no fixed dimensions. means to range freely over all metrical scales,

and

this explains

are relative

still

life

picture.

devout imploring grace

the relations

;

at the altar the saint

divine intervention; and from

angels

whom

The sequence of

on high appear the

summoned

the saint has

invokes

to his aid.

events in time has been conveyed

by a sequence of figures in space. If the term "illusionism" must be used, it is well to note that

by

in this case the artist creates the illusion of time

means of

may

Zurbaran depicts

woman

a female saint as a

her exalted social rank.

Spanish gentle-

He

evidently intended with

metaphor to allude both to the privileged

rank of the

saints

in

the

hierarchy

of spiritual

values and, at the same time, to the spiritual value

of the social aristocracy. The sumptuous garment is

a

means of

illusion (and of persuasion), since

it

serves to establish the mental correlation between a social value

no longer

created by the "uniformity" of proportions, but by

that

in

this

between disparate

things.

multidimensional space,

Thus

we

it

is

discern

which had no place in the classical conception of space; and each thing, while forming particularities

part of a grandiose, universal whole, preserves

—just

quality as a thing in itself

as, in

its

the varied and

active intercourse of society, the distinctive char-

from being obscured or the more clearly.

brought out

and

all

also be in things themselves.

dressed with a dignified elegance befitting

this social

is

acter of each individual, far

space.

illusion

a painter can give us a nearby

the different categories of objects, space

lost, is

The

how

and an otherworldly vision in the same But if there are so many scales of sizes for

Rubens uses perspective foreshortening to depict the man possessed by a devil in the foreground; behind, on the steps, kneel the Miracle of St Ignatius,

of values

a spiritual value.

In the field of

town planning and urban

conception of space led to a continual

ture, this

variation of size relationships, to the use of different

attempts to achieve visual surprise, to a

scales, to

change-over from the restricted perspective of the

broad expanse of the square, to an unexpected view of a monument and the sudden street to the

opening of a

vista.

But

it

also led to the typological

differentiation of buildings in accordance with practical

requirements; and

it

meant

tural elements, like the fa9ade

Rome, we

architec-

that certain struc-

of a church or an

arris

Michelangelo's dome; but every architectural struc-

up two perspectives, were carefully studied and worked out with great precision. In the two churches in the Piazza del Popolo in Rome, for example, Bernini broke up the classical symmetry intended by Rainaldi, by transforming the round

ture appeared insignificant in such surroundings,

cupola of one of the churches into an ellipse in order

dwarfed by the mighty

to bring

In Bernini's baldachin in St Peter's, in

have a typical case of psychological illusionism.



Attempts had been made to erect a ciborium small temple, one might almost call it under



pillars

of the church. Bernini

did not proceed by reducing a piece of architecture to a small scale.

He took

a relatively small object, a

processional baldachin, and enlarged

it

enormously,

that links

the

two

church

it

and by using the corner of the the pivot on which the perspective turns,

streets;

as

he gave

into line with the perspective axes of

it

the same value as the portico in front.

transforming the slender shafts into ponderous, twisted bronze columns.

A

great innovator in

all

scenic effects, he thereby achieved a mental illusion

space,

new imaginary

which art uses as real has not only dimensions and proportions but

This

space,

no

also direction. Generally speaking, perspective

the axis running

from the entrance to the

longer serves to mark the position of a motionless

one most favored

onlooker, but supposes a moving onlooker and

it is

follows his physical and optical

movements along

a

multiplicity of changing lines of sight. In the process

allowance

is

made not only

for the objective con-

ditions of vision, but also for the psychological factor.

To

take a typical example in

along

as a spatial determinant,

this axis that

The development of relation to a

cases

it

altar is the

because

one normally enters a church. space

is

therefore studied in

normal condition of

vision, but in

violates or breaks visual habits

"normal" estimation of distances and

and

both

alters the

sizes.

Rome. Borro-

mini's church of San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane

and Bernini's church of Sant'Andrea al Quirinale are both built on an elliptical plan. But our feeling on entering the first is one of spatial contraction or constriction, while in the second we have a sense of spatial expansion. This effect is caused in part by the architectural structure, which is disproportionately large in the first, and small in the second. But more than this, the effect is achieved because the main axis in San Carlo runs from the entrance to the altar, while in Sant'Andrea it is perpendicular to the altar so ;

which appears laterally compressed in appears expanded in the second. Obviously

known

Baroque

aimed at producing illusion and exciting wonder, and clearly it achieved the second by means of the first. But we know today that illusion, as a psychological It is

no

well

less

that the

than a visual phenomenon,

aesthetic

is

not so

much

the extension as the alteration of a "normal" condi-

and that it is this alteration which produces the emotional shock which in turn arouses our sense of tion,

wonder. In the case of the two churches mentioned above, the contraction or expansion of space excites

wonder because

it

modifies the usual symmetrical

that the space

layout of the circular building, and thus balks our

the

psychological expectation of symmetry.

first

IMAGINATION AND FEELING

The

emotional shock caused by the rupture of

normal visual conditions does not cause an eclipse or a dispersion of visual values, but on the contrary their intensification. Because the image is no longer

An emotional speech will be more persuasive because it

make him share the or at least arouse in him similar

involves the listener, will

feelings of the orator,

emotions.

conditioned by equilibrium, by the symmetrical

compensation of nature, limits of verisimilitude

it

and

is

possibility.

But

this, too,

even the image most divergent from experience is "possible," by the very fact of its being translated into something which is is

only

because

relative,

objectively existent. In this sense, there

no con-

is

between the "natural" imagination of Bernini and the "unnatural" imagination of Borrotradiction

mini, or of Guarini.

They

are simply

two

different

methods or processes of the imagination.

The emotional shock the senses, but

it

knowledge,

all

and displays

it

effects;

to us, fixes

but the same it

irrevocably

"gravity." This "gravity" does not

its

suggest the attitude which must be taken, but

it

creates a state of reponsibility. In the face of facts,

man

free to act as

is

he wishes, but he

aware of

is

we have

ary

tale,

but in bringing out the

possibilities, the

and the deeper impulses which have determined human action in the past, as they do in the present. Velazquez, who was the most lucid of the seventeenth-century painters, overcomes the conflicts of past, present and future, claiming in a sense complete freedom to assess reality in his own way, but at the same time recognizing the necessity secret motives

of taking a definite position, of reacting actively to every

situation.

Poussin

considers

history

closed dimension, in which everything tiful,"

is

as

a

"beau-

because nothing can be modified by present

contingencies.

The human condition

is

therefore

only a feeling of expectation with regard to history

betrays a lack of satisfaction

(not unlike that expectation of

it

with the present.

We

wish to have a profounder

knowledge of what we are observing, or to leave it or, more positively, to change it. Our imagination places us in a situation which is different from the one we are in physically, but it is feeling which controls our choice of the

many imaginable

And rhetoric, which directs a is

which reveals

light

its

the extent that feeling causes

or solicits action,

by choice,

causes or envisaging

of what has caused them logically, or as a caution-

by the yardstick of action. In the view of Descartes, feeling does not belong to "rational" nature, but rather to the "mixed" nature of man. It is preceded by a moment of thought, when the viewer is confronted with a factual situation; after this comes the reaction (pleasure, pain, etc.), and this is followed by an action (approaching or departing from

tions.

its

sudden happening, without inquiring into

the point of view of

aim of persuasion is not truth but what is useful. If what is true has a contemplative value, then what is useful has one of inspiration. So that astonishment before any work of the marvelous is an experience which must be assessed above all

To

fact as a

of the motives behind the facts; not in the sense

illusions are false. But, as

etc.).

Caravaggio confines himself to presenting the

on the

effects

seen, the

the object,

limits.

of

intensifies the activities

From

positions can differ, but only within these

what is irrevocable in the facts, and of the corresponding relative responsibility for himself. Rembrandt, on the other hand, makes a profound study

cannot have positive

intellectual faculties.

The

subject only to the

in control of the

situa-

situation selected

domain of

feeling.

phenomena which

is

Giorgione's and the early Titian's feeling towards nature),

even

if this

sense of expectation

is

sustain-

ed by a melancholy certainty that the future, too, will

become the Rubens on

past

beyond the bounds of

death.

the contrary turns the experience of

and the imminence of the future into an exciting feeling, which is intensely vital, of the present. But if feeling determines human action. the past

must also be the possibility of directing it. This was the task assumed by the artists who followed in the wake of the Carracci, notably Guido Reni and Domenichino, and whose work, diffused over a wide area, gave life to all forms of "official" art. there

to the point of self-sacrifice; the Cleopatras, the

pangs of love or

to one's affections; the

fidelity

Hercules, victorious strength, and so on. Whether intentionally or not, these figures are allegories; the figures stand for concepts or for types of feelings,

but the reference to mythology or to ancient history If feeling

and

is

is

essentially

man's "natural" reaction,

therefore always to

of nature,

is

it

some

extent the feeling

not possible to transform natural

feeling into social feeling unless the

problem of

nature, and therefore of the "beautiful," has

been

first

The chief function of the art trend by Guido Reni is essentially the transforma-

settled.

typified

shows

that the category

has

roots in history.

its

ning

is

soul"

may

rical

which no longer

elect nature

presents any problems, but which simply defines the ideal condition of

in the world, that

tions

it

presents

that ideal

man is

in the world.

His adventure

to say his reactions to the situa-

him with,

has yet to begin. Beauty

condition in which

all

relations

is

with

the

is

figures are "beautiful"

is

new even

and educated. The "beautiful of nobility to which all men

elect title

if

they are without illustrious ante-

The education which

cedents.

These ardsts accepted the verdict of history as to the beautiful this meant Raphael and, within limits,

Here was an

one of the

aspire,

soul"

Titian.

The

because they reveal a nature which from the begin-

tion of natural beauty into moral or social beauty.

:

not an abstract one and

is

creates the "beautiful

not learned through precepts nor from histo-

examples. Education

achieved as a result of

is

persuasion. In so far as the "beautiful"

is

considered

as action or suffering "beautifully," or as an invitation

to allow oneself to be persuaded,

much

in

men

as in

women,

in the old, or in children.

it

can be found as

much in the young as The "beautiful" ceases

as

to exist as a formal category,

corporeal and physical types.

and

The

is

succeeded by

various tempera-

many

nature can be achieved, and which founds a state of

ments and feelings correspond to

form in which disordered passions are composed in a harmonious system giving place to ordered actions. Guido

sions of face and gesture.

than the beautiful but then characteristic features are

Reni's Atalanta and Hippomenes

generalized into "types of character," to which

equilibrium or measure.

It

is

the

beautiful, but the beauty of the

is

a search for the

two

figures

is felt

say that

we

are dealing

More

as

accurately,

more with

expres-

we may

the characteristic

;

added a moral judgment. Murillo

identifies

is

moral

only in the clearly geometrical equilibrium of their

beauty with the innocence of childhood, which

movement. The best way of controlling feelings is to be aware of them, and to classify them to arrange them according to categories or types is also the

also the

ragged philosophers, rehabilitates the ugly in order

way of

despises

;

defining their "general" or social values.

Guido's painting feeling.

is

almost a repertory of types of

The various Davids

represent

youthful

image of

faith in

God. Ribera, with

is

his

wisdom which worldly goods. Rubens and Jordaens no

to demonstrate the value of true

longer see any reason for separating ideal beauty

from sensual beauty, even

in historical-religious or

Van Dyck openly

self-assurance; the saints at prayer, devotion; the

allegorical scenes.

Magdalens, contrition; the Lucretias, virtue taken

ted feelings with the privileged social classes.

associates eleva-

3 THE EMOTIONS Lomazzo, in his "Treatise on the Art of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture" (1584), identifies the of

expression

the painter

figures:

who

the mechanics of the

ments

with

feelings

the

movement of

best acquainted with

is

human body and

will best represent its

moveinner movements, the its

emotions. In the seventeenth century, however, the artist's

intention was to

communicate an emotional

cause a sentimental response in the spectator,

state, to

and their corresponding physical movements. Thus, in the scene represented, there had to be something inconclusive which tended to linger on in the mind of the beholder. Mochi depicts his Veronica in one rather

than

represent

to

feelings

the

of the niches of the great pilasters of St Peter's;

he sees her

at the

away from the

moment when

face of Christ

lously aware that

it

she tears the veil

and becomes tremu-

bears the imprint of his features.

even the monumental presentation of the figure has an allegorical meaning: it is an image of the Church which conserves the living It is clear that

imprint of the Redeemer. For this reason, the face has a generic or mask-like quality, beautiful, mournful,

wonderful; there

gesture,

it is

in

is

nothing

pitiful

about the

keeping with the monumentality of

which occupies the whole space of the niche transversely. The inclination of the head to the figure,

the other side accentuates the

movement of

the

diagonal lines of the drapery, causing them to

converge towards the

veil.

What

in fact the artist

intended, was to create a sense of increasing and

mounting rhythm, transforming the dress into so

many

lines

folds of the

of force flowing towards

a peripheral vertex, at the extreme limit of the space,

thereby suggesting a prolongation and continuation

of the movement.

Too much character,

has been written about the ambiguous

half-mystical

Ecstasy of St Teresa.

the art,

many

It

half-erotic,

of

cannot be denied

Bernini's

that,

among

themes of seventeenth-century one was the transposition or subUmation of the religious

God. But a psycho-analytical examination of the work would not take us beyond this thematic motif, which was very frequent in contemporary lyrical poetry and religious literature. In Bernini, moreover, the theme has a more immediate raison d'etre. It may be described as the renewal, in the manner of the erotic into an almost physical love of

Carracci so congenial to Bernini, of Correggio's aesthetic of the

sensibility.

Bernini suspends his

group beyond the altar in a small chapel or shrine which possesses its own source of light and is thus distinct from the rest of the church. All the forms are melted and fused together by this light; plastic

the clothes of the saint are a bright palpitating mass, fully alive,

and those of the angel swirl

(allegorically

the visible

of love).

:

like a flame

a blaze of love, as if the angel

were

embodiment of the saint's ecstatic vision The faces, hands, and feet are simply

points of extreme luminous intensity in an animated

mass of light which extends to the clouds and communicates its radiation to the whole of the surrounding space, thereby evoking a flow of emotional sympathy in the spectator. For Morazzone, however, mystical ecstasy eros for

Bernini

is

is

a death struggle;

death for him. Here

what

is

we have

two poles of the Baroque attitude to life. Morazzone was a Lombard whose religion had the

the

75

JUSEPE RIBERA: ST SEBASTIAN, 1638-165I. MUSEO NAZIONALE DI CAPODIMONTE, NAPLES.

of the faith preached by St Charles

pietistic strictness

Borromeo. The is

essentially

between him and Bernini thematic; in Morazzone everything difference

melts into shadow rather than light; only one livid ray

sumed

last,

of Hght illumines the tortured and con-

Here too the sentiment, the pathos, is not conveyed by a gesture, a movement, an action, but by a contraction or convulsion which occupies the whole of the space. Representation is face of the saint.

minimum

reduced to the

in order to intensify the

sense of entreaty and spiritual stimulus. artist

wants to do

is

What

the

identify the spectator with the

suffering of the saint, to

make him

feel at least a part

of the martyrdom.

The

position

St Sebastian

is

of Ribera

is

very

different.

His

a carefully arranged figure, like a

model who has taken the pose. Even in the throes of martyrdom it retains the elegance, even the grace, of a gesture which we see it in the right hand is more demonstrative than expressive. The saint's body is that of a splendid nude, drawn according to the rules; but in order to show that the figure is



and its sufferings real, the painter has added to the nude the realistic detail of the hair on the chest and in the armpits. The face, its eyes raised to real,

heaven,

is

that of an actor singing a solo aria.

The

and makes no attempt to conceal the scenic artifice; he probably realized that, in order to evoke a sentimental reaction, theatrical devices are no less effective than crude reality, perhaps even more effective. He has recourse to every expedient. The martyr has a boyish youthfulness, and only his short beard gives his face a certain virility. His pose is artificial but harmonious; in the foreground we see his flank transfixed by an arrow, an almost brazen appeal to the compassion of pious women. Here the sevenpainter

plays

his

tricks

teenth-century public

is

openly

being prepared for and

acclimatized to "useful" fiction.

I

I

PERSUASION AND DEVOTION

j^rsuasion attempts to obtain a way of

life,

a

iconoclasm, Rene Benoit defined the function of

praxis in conformity with the principles of authority;

images in his Traite

the means for this is communication, which is not a one-way movement only, from top to bottom. St Francis of Sales saw in devotion not so much a bond as a "ladder" which leads from earth to heaven. God may grant spiritual and temporal grace, but man must ask for it with prayer.

usage d'icelles.

The devotional image had Late Mannerist painting,

its

already appeared in

aim being to give

a

tangible object to prayer. In the seventeenth century it

became an instrument of devotional

practice,

a genre of historical-religious painting. It

and

was always

connected with a special kind of devotional practice,

sometimes with special prayers;

its

function was to

exhort rather than to represent or to glorify ; and for the purposes of repetition and propagation

it

was

simplified.

The Council of Trent had confined

itself

to

condemning "licentious" nudes and prescribing the ways in which the painter could better serve the Church: he was called upon to instruct the people and confirm it in the faith, to show it the gifts lavished upon mankind by God, to edify it with the of the

saints.

question

At

In the seventeenth century, besides reforming the

iconography and thus opening the way for a new effort of the imagination, the Church was traditional

engaged in a propaganda campaign which had the effect of rapidly fixing the iconography of the new saints, since their example was frequently invoked as a guide and stimulus to others. To combat heresy, which denied the cult of the saints, it wished to demonstrate to all the faithful, even to the most humble, that the way to heavenly glory was open. More than heroes, confessors, masters, and martyrs of the faith, the saints were now teachers and advocates. In every case, they were intermediary figures who maintain the contact between life on earth and the Heavenly Master. To attain salvation, and yet to have lived at the same time in this world, the help of God with all His Grace is required for every act

on

earth.

With

their eyes looking to heaven, the

palms of their hands open towards the earth, the saints

invoke Divine Grace, and dispense or entreat

faithful,

Even

example

promise;

the center of the debate

was the

the saint, idealizing

— maliciously

it

raised

by Aretino

—of

the

nudes in Michelangelo's iMSt Judgment. But very soon, quite apart from the alleged irreverence of such figures, they were judged by the canons not

God

it

evokes the traditional it

it

to the

to accept their prayers.

figuratively, the devotional

to follow the

vision of miracles, to induce

du vray

catholique des images et

image is a comphysiognomy of

vaguely into the "beautiful,"

in allusion to its condition of beatitude.

The nobler

attributes are indicated with precision, while the

others are neglected.

The setting is reduced to a on earth, and to the celestial

the

few allusions to life domain which the saint has reached; for this reason the coloring and lighting, also "generalized," are vaguely suited to the theme, and aim rather at

devotional picture should accordingly be "faithful,

influencing the feeling of the devout than fixing

pure, true and chaste." In other words,

the image in a purely structural form.

only of religion but of

taste.

In the opinion of Gilio,

devotional figures are the reverse

(the

reference

to

Michelangelo

of violent figures is

obvious);

it is

the very

reverse of a violent and dramatic composition. In this discussion reference ity

was even made to the seren-

of the Primitives and, following Vasari, the

example of Fra Angelico was invoked. In 1564, after much argument for and against Protestant

in fact,

is

not in

The

goal,

this case to excite surprise

or to

stimulate imagination, for the soul of the devout believer

is

then deep in prayer, and

it

must not be

troubled by an image which might distract

image

is,

it.

The

in fact, conceived for a purely auxiliary or

instrumental function, the simplicity of

its

style

making it immediately familiar. Communication here makes no call upon the intelligence; it takes place on the "subliminal" level, as we would call it

Guido Reni, Centino. At Naples,

as Guercino,

the

paintings

in

the

Hermitage

of

in

Camaldoli,

today. Unlike the great scenes of religious history

Gramatica produced scenes in a frankly popular vein, which translate the sermons of Lent with the aid of hfelike figures. The artistic level of devotional

which attempt

pictures

to create a state of lively astonish-

ment, the representation of devotion tends to induce a feeling of humility in the devout believer, the only

manner in which to address God. The tone of the visual communication is humble, fervent, suitable

Deliberately

insistent.

recourse

is

brilliant

style,

which it would but which can certainly

usually had to a language

be excessive to be called

avoiding a

call archaic,

artificially

"old-fashioned": this

is

the case

and in Spain with Zurbaran. Because the visual approach is to be only a guide and almost a whispered suggestion to the devout person at prayer, the choice of a humble and often old-fashioned language in no way excludes the use of other familiar forms of speech; dialect and vernacular terms are to be found in the devotional images of Ludovico Carracci, and they are even more marked in other Bolognese artists, such in

Italy

with

Sassoferrato,

is

often

almost

intentionally

modest;

was the development of a popular art encouraged and guided by those in authority, and widely diffused by means of prints for propagandistic and devotional purposes. However, when the tone is elevated without borrowing its rhetoric from scenes of history, sometimes a tj^ical of this period

truly religious lyricism

is

produced. This

is

to be

seen in the austere images, free of Murillo's unctuous quality, of Philippe de

Champaigne,

who

adopts a

severely classical diction, in the Poussin manner, but

does so out of purely Jansenist rigor and shows no interest in the style.

It

"lyricist"

imagery associated with the

classical

can be seen even more in the greatest

of the seventeenth century, Georges de

La Tour, who, influenced by Caravaggio, achieved a strict archaism which puts him beside the great masters of fifteenth-century French painting.

83

4

LA

TOUR

CARAVAGGIO

Some of the greatest

artists of the seventeenth century

been at variance with the "spirit of the century"

and are

appear

to have

often regarded

as anti-Baroque painters simply because they did not take a conceptual view of art and had no imaginative exuberance. They examined reality very closely, looking for

a new meaning

in things,

quality unconnected with conventional piety.

problems of the time were often

and

an interior

religious

This explains why the

reflected in their

work more

consciously

clearly.

Almost

La

all the paintings of Georges de

distinctly locali':^ed source

Tour have an

internal,

of light ; but his aim was certainly not

to

study the science of "particular lighting." It would be truer to say that he set himself the problem of reducing space to the small q^one illuminated

by the ray of a candle or an oil-lamp. The figures, often screening off

and form precise volumes of become geometrical forms and

the source of light, define the picture space light

and

Even faces and

shade.

La

luminous volumes. In short. conception of space

;

objects

Tour does not admit any a priori

he rejects perspective illusionism

and does not

even

consider the possibility of a space existing beyond the small aura of light

He saw space only as a means of situating

in which his figures are placed.

an

event,

a human

group of

figure, or a

In experimenting with light

effects.

objects.

La

Tour was exploring a field

which had been opened up in the very first years of the century by Caravaggio. In the

Supper

at

Emmaus^

the figures are only screens

defining the luminous ^one revealed by the reflection of the white napkin,

which

is lit

up by a shaft of

The painter wished

to

light falling

from some

invisible source.

focus attention on the objects on the table, whose

shapes are emphasi':(ed by heavy cast shadows: these are the real subjects of the picture.

Christ

may

be

a

And

the gesture of benediction ( the beardless

self-portrait,

and

the picture a polemical statement,

the "manifesto" of Caravaggesque realism) has

meaning;

it proclaims

because each of being, of life

84

religious

that all things in the real ivorld are of equal value

them embodies

and

more than a

death.

the ultimate

problem of being and non-

CRESPI

VELAZQUEZ

That

ZURBARAN

this ivas the case is to he seen in one

of Caravaggio 's

loftiest,

most tragic and polemical paintings, the Death of the Virgin. Here again the light jails from a definite hut invisihle source on to the hody of

woman and

the dead

Magdalen. The

the shoulders of the weeping

figures of the Apostles on the outskirts of the luminous ^one transmit the rays of light ; they stand motionless, nor is there any space heyond

Of

their silent presence.

to say, all

we know

that part of it which transpires in an event in which we ourselves

is

are humanly involved. is

seems

reality, the artist

We

cannot escape or elude

it,

for our existence

wholly hound up in what happens here and now.

But

does not exclude devoutness.

strictness

Borromeo^ Crespi

St Charles

In the Supper of

expresses the meditative concentration

of the saint hy contrasting the objects on the table symbols oj poverty and penitence

Whether

the

the theme is death or ecstasy, the

presence oj things artist

—with

who

is

—which

bareness oj the room.

problem

:

is the

same

:

the

But

there is one

Vela^quet^. In the

bodegones

revealed hy the absence oj man.

eludes this tragic dualism

are also

which he painted in his youth, he took up the themes oj Caravaggio, hut without the objects

value

recogni':^ing

any hierarchical distinction between

around him. Figures and

and are not mutually

exclusive.

objects,

man and

jor him, have the same

Each oj us

is,

in jact, the

product

oj our own experience, and we do not need any abstract process oj thought to identijy ourselves

and in

consciousness.

with the things which enter into our daily experience

Objects do not have any hidden meaning; they are

a sense a part oj ourselves, a counterpart oj the Caravaggio 's

because it

Death of the Virgin was

was considered blasphemous or

"holy" nor "devout"

;

ego.

rejected as irreverent.

an altar picture It was neither

but that it was a projoundly religious painting

was

implicitly recogni'^ed by one oj the

the

seventeenth

century,

the

most pious Catholic painters oj

Spaniard Zurbaran ; he borrowed

composition and lighting jor his Funeral of St Bonaventure^ a

its

work

not only devout but inspired hy the strictest ideals and precepts oj religious orthodoxy.

85

86

DIEGO VELAZQUEZ (1599-1660). THE OLD COOK, 1617-1622. NATIONAL GALLERY OF SCOTLAND, EDINBURGH.

SAENREDAM

RAINALDI

The contrast between inner piety and its outwardforms, between true feeling

and mere

display, is to be seen again in architecture. Protestant

and unadorned, places of prayer and self-communion ; Counter-Reformation are monumental and ornate, symboliz-

churches are bare those of the

ing in all their forms the universal authority of the Catholic Church.

A Dutch painter, Pieter Saenredam, depicted the interior of St John Church

soft light

from on

But

the sanctity of the place is conveyed by the

high falling through the great windows,

over the barrel vault

and glowing on

of the world, he seems

to say,

man

is

skimming

the bare walls. In the great void

alone ; but he is comforted by the

God.

light of

The Roman

Maria

empty space containing a few, small human

in Utrecht as a vast,

figures lost in prayer.

's

architect Carlo Rainaldi built a votive church, Santa

an image said

in Campitelli, in which

was

the plague

to

work miracles

against

The "spiritual" plague of the day was collective cult of the mass was considered

venerated.

Protestant heresy, and the

the the

best defense against the dangers of a purely personal religion, lacking the discipline of the established light-filled

the walls.

Church. Rainaldi' s church encloses a vast,

area whose structure

is

reduced to the plastic articulation of

In Baroque architecture, every structural element had an

allegorical as well as

a spatial meaning. The pilasters and columns

allude to the sustaining power of the faith, but demonstrate its truth by

creating

a space calculated

the order of the universe. fills the entire

to

impress on the faithful an ideal image of

Thus

cupola and subsides into the is

Saenredam' s picture

space here illuminates the massive columns, the moldings

of the arches and entablatures ;

church

the light which in

designed to

structural members. the last analysis,

a great sea of light under the

penumbra of

the side-chapels.

The whole

most of the play of light among the the great empty space of the interior is, in

make

And

it forms

the

an allegory of nature as

reflected in the civil forms

of

architecture.

91

CARLO RAINALDI (161I-1691). THE CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA

IN CAMPITELLI (INTERIOR), ROME, 1663-1667.

93

RHETORIC AND CLASSICISM

The crisis of classicism coincided with

Mannerism,

while the Baroque was a revaluation of the historical

and

naturalistic experience

new

of classicism. The

a

new

interpretation of Michelangelo.

Nor

can

it

Mannerism, Caravaggio stood for a return to nature, even if nature for him is be

denied

that,

against

feature

of the seventeenth century was that the

not the mistress of experience, but

classical

canons were placed in antithesis to a new,

an obstacle to moral commitment. In the same way,

realistic

approach to

The

Borromini followed Michelangelo's example, not

perceptible in the

art.

antithesis

became

years of the century in the

first

painting of Caravaggio;

it

developed

later in the

between Caravaggio and Carracci, which was noted by the critics, especially Mancini and Bellori. They contend that Caravaggio despised the antithesis

and that his painting resembles nothing which had been done or thought before, nor does it resemble nature, for natural teaching

of the ancients,

moment

Caravaggio records an actual arresting immediacy.

The

in

;

and on the other hand

has no contact with poetry, which

or

pictorial praxis.

speech,

is

its

therefore

antithesis

guage, described by the classical principle tura poesis"

all

is

painting which implies speech or lan-

a

Classicism,

'W

a painting is

as

pic-

which

only painting,

language and

demonstrative, and thus classical repre-

sentations have a beginning, a development and an

end. Classicism

because

it

is

therefore historical and natural,

gives us the "natural" development of

actions, while realism, in spite of ity to truth, is it

its

professed

fidel-

unnatural and unhistorical, because

represents an action as a mere occurrence, without

explaining

its

once a spur and

in

imitating his forms, but in conceiving of art

as

an ever unsatisfied aspiration

towards trans-

cendence, going beyond considerations of "finish"

and formal perfection. Caravaggio, Borromini, interprets the essentially

much

as

as

master in a rigorous,

moral fashion, very of the

different

from the

Mannerists

or

literal

interpretation

eclectic

borrowings of the followers of the Carracci.

the

development or exposition, while

actions call for

between

at

These last, incidentally, were soon to extend their condemnation of the Michelangelesque Mannerists to the master himself. Their admiration went to

whom they

in

that of Michelangelo:

a

the "beautiful," or perfect

harmony between man and

causes or consequences.

saw

harmonious synthesis of idea and experience and, even more, a serene confidence in those supreme values of nature and history which Michelangelo, in his ceaseless desire to surpass himself, had called into question, and even denied in the last phase of his career, Guido Reni and Domenichino, working within the vast stylistic current initiated by the Carracci, took up again the Mannerist theme of the idea, but they identified it with the art of Raphael rather than Raphael and Titian,

nature, belongs to a

which can be contemplated but cannot be recovered in the present, which corresponds with the feelings and anxieties of the moment. As feelings past

But

antithesis

too schematic.

is

true

that Caravaggio, following the old advice of

Leo-

this

is

It

nardo, did not study the ancients, and attempted to record things with an unflinching directness

immediacy, critics

as they actually

and

took place. But even the

of the seventeenth century recognized the

link, in the first

phase of his work, which connect-

ed him with the Venetian masters of the sixteenth century (Zuccari, for example,

"Giorgionism" of it is

his

commented on

and period he proposed

Vocation of St Matthew);

clear that during his

Roman

the

are

projected into the future,

anxiety,

so

as

expectation or

they are projected into the past, as

some good which has been irremediably lost. Even for Poussin the classical world is a world from which he felt himself cut off', and for this very reason it appeared to him more beautiful and attractive, even though its quiet harmony bears nostalgia for

such a resemblance to death

we cannot

consider

without a profound sense of melancholy.

it

And how

can

we

to notice in the greatest landscape painter

fail

of the seventeenth century, Claude Lorrain, a feeling

some

for nature as of

lost

boon, a happy realm

which one longs to escape.

into

The with

derivatives,

its

is

Antiquity was a time as yet

and of Bernini, undoubtedly nearer to life.

classicism of the Carracci

when human

no otherworldly

having

history,

was carried on

aspirations,

entirely in nature. It is therefore impossible to sepa-

and history, impossible to abandon the allegory which shapes ideas into natural images. But if this is so, the natural character of the human being and his feelings can only be revealed in a domain where the classical identity of nature and history is recognized. It is only beyond these limits rate nature

that the

domain of

the foundation of art, differs in the

all

There

faith has revealed to

placing the goal of hfe beyond

century the development of art took place in terms of conflicting tendencies, which form with their dialectical tension the unified

men

And

history. still

the history of antiquity.

founded on

of nature, of history. This

is

not to say that Poussin

nature with an emotion which

sensory; he expresses

it,

in fact,

with

coloring of the great Titianesque najture has

message which

its

come

all

the intense

tradition.

is

But

and the

to a standstill,

images transmit

is

the message of

another time, of the past, which has been consigned to history.

The

structure of the landscape

is

the

which has existed and no longer. Rubens' composition, on the

The debate on between

dynamic, a turbulent accumulation

of masses, while his colors surge like endlessly

breaking waves. The future and the past do not feeling;

intensify

they

hasten

the

possession of the present in which the feelings play a

part.

Rubens'

allegory and faith

Poussin, but that

is,

his

themes

—are

— myths,

history,

nature,

not very far from those of

conception of them

is

different;

the interpretation of classicism, which had

defined these great values and which remains after

and a negative

a positive

pretation. Either history

is

a past to

which there

hopeless regrets, death

The problem of

is

inter-

the basis of experience,

of our confidence in the future, of

no

life itself;

or

it is

return, the object of

itself.

and death, which was of vital concern to all, could not be considered without reflecting on the values of classicism and history; for the problem changes according to whether it is regarded in terms of nature or society. The theme of death, overt or hidden, is present in all Baroque art. It is conspicuous in the monumental tombs in life

which allegory triumphs. It is conspicuous too in the funeral decorations which theatrically accompany death and mourning, with the same ritual pomp as that of marriages, feasts, coronations. We need only observe the macabre symbolism of these castra doloris to realize that

to

the rhetoric of death attempts

"denounce with overpowering luxury the vanity

interest in the

but

inter-

or of classicism, can be reduced to the

which exists

dissolve,

free

meaning and the value of

the

and the grandeur of luxury"

is

Neoclassical

and not on the

science,

crystallization of a reality

other hand,

The

pretation of the antique.

history,

life itself.

opposing conception of classicism, the sense of myth,

him

history, in the seventeenth century,

phase which succeeded the Baroque confined itself to reducing the tendencies and the different interpretations of the "classic" to a sole, official form

as

Rubens goes even further. Human feelings, the "passions of life," no longer know limits of time; they no longer possess a past, a present, or a future. The images of the past, evoked by memory or passed down by history, and also those of the imagination, press down on the images of the present, which the senses perceive, and are so vivid and concrete that they finish by coalescing with them. The antithesis, which appears later in the quarrel between the followers of Rubens and Poussin, was founded on their

for

of the culture of

These tendencies do not consist in attitudes towards nature, but towards

different

is

web

epoch.

the

antithesis

feel

painters.

the possible opens, a perspective

which the Christian

does not

two

between them a divergence of tendency (as in Italy between Caravaggio and Annibale Carracci, between Borromini and Bernini). In the seventeenth is

cause



it is

pomp

(Chastel). This fantastic

of death has equally a social

necessary to

show

to the people

who

have to submit to the wishes of the great of this earth, that these men too will die, and will have to render their account to

God

of the authority

that,

thanks to Him, they exercised on earth. The powerful

man

leaving this world

honors which are the fate

is

his due, but

which awaits him

greeted with

we

all

the

are ignorant of

after the

Judgment of

beyond the grave. Nor does he go there immediately. First comes his death.

God

in the "just" society

The

then burial, then the decomposition of his body, the

break-up of that marvelous anatomists could

now

which the

machine

describe in

If life

all its detail.

idea of

alludes in the a

new

"modern"

attitude towards history. History

the only dimension of

same harmonious cycle, and there is nothing terrifying about it. But if the horizon of life is bounded by society itself, to die means to drop out of that society, leaving behind uncompleted undertakings, which will be either taken up by others

the

place easily in the

The very ambiguity of

life

life,

because

lived by humanity, but

rational construction laid

it

is

it is

is

it

down by

the earthly source of authority;

events in which

Bellori also

of his "Lives") implies taking up

title

has a close connection with nature, death can take its

which

art (to

is

certainly

defined by

no longer

a

providence, nor

it is

a succession

of

impossible to distinguish a

governing hand. Bernini and Pietro da Cortona,

This public representation of death merely removes

on the imagination, described a perspective which seemed probable or lifelike; but they were well aware that their view of the future as an image of the past was a mental illusion translated into a

the fear of individual death, of this experience which

visual illusion. It

each must face alone.

and by admitting chance, we have

or abandoned.

symbolism reveals fiction to draw a

this funereal

an

a

that

all

veil

over the horror of death.

this ritual is

alibi,

relying

is

impossible to eliminate chance; at best the art

the Bamboccianti, the low-life painters,

Caravaggio had the temerity to tear away the of

fiction.

This

man who

in a logical sequence,

the event as

it

despised history as ordered

and shows more

interest in

happens, sees in death the "true"

event with neither cause nor passage

veil

towards

another

Death

effect.

life;

it

the

is

not a

is

violent

encounter with reality beyond the deceptive curtain of nature. After physical death, celestial glory,

we do

but into the obscurity, the cold, the

emergence of

loneliness of the tomb. This fearful

death

is

the price he pays for his scorn of the classics.

But that the

two pure

can no longer teach a

classics

live (or to die)

whom

not enter into

according to nature

classics,

tragedy

is

is

man

to

to be seen in

Poussin and Claude Lorrain, in

dissolved in elegy, and horror in

melancholy, but the dominating thought remains the thought of death. artists

endowed with

Jordaens, Frans Hals.

The same can be

said

even of

brutal vitality, such as Rubens,

They reduce everything

to the

what they saw notion

in the streets.

of rational

But

history,

if

who recorded

we put

aside the

question

the

whether we accept or refuse chance; part of human destiny, the problem

of

if is

is

chance

not is

a

to prepare

and to define at any moment and in any situation the conduct which must be followed. If art is persuasion, the problem is not to persuade others of this or that, but to assume a the

mind

clear

and

to face

it,

logical attitude before this or that, before

everything that

exists.

This need of a

new humanism,

humanism which brought with it in a century of political servitude a new dignitas hominis, was felt by

a

those artists

who were most

acutely aware of the

"European" situation. It was not Caravaggio or the Carracci, whose art remained "Italian," even if its influence was felt all over Europe; it was not Poussin, even if his classicism historical situation as a

is

metahistorical, just as his nature

nor was

it

Rubens,

is

metaphysical;

in spite of the

cosmic and univer-

As

for the antithesis

present, to the instant; but for this very reason the

sal

problem of what goes before and what comes after is frightening, evoked by the orgiastic explosion of

between Caravaggio and Carracci, between Borromini and Bernini, between Rubens and Poussin, we

life. It

could not be otherwise. Once the equilibrium

of humanity and nature was broken, to enlarge, to twist,

even to

was necessary contradict and break up it

the structure of the classical form, in order to adapt it

to

its

new

context; the relationship between the

present and history becomes even

more

tense and

character of his vitality.

have already seen that

it is

limited to their different

but univocal interpretations of classicism. The great

between Rembrandt and Velazquez; and it brings into play, from two opposite poles, the culture of the Reformation and

antithesis of the century

is

that

that of the Counter-Reformation.

precarious, and only very few artists are capable of

overcoming the contrast between modern ancient history, or of framing their

"modern" history. These are the seemed to go beyond the limits of illuminating its true meaning in century of modern Europe.

life

and

own work in a same men who the

Baroque by

this,

the

first

The two artists possess a "European" culture. Rembrandt is, directly or not, related to Caravaggio, the Venetians, Rubens and, through Elsheimer, the Germans up to Diirer. Velazquez is connected with Caravaggio, El Greco, Rubens, the Venetians, the

Bolognese masters of the seventeenth century and

even with the ancients, whom he studied critically, especially during his second journey to Italy (1648). Behind Rembrandt was the religious skepticism of Bruegel. To break through this skepticism and arrive at an ethical attitude, as Rembrandt wished

means

to do,

to reduce experience, to discern the

underlying motives of history in what

may seem

to

be a disordered accumulation of events. The painter

had

humanist culture; he was friendly with

a great

Amsterdam synagogue, and

the Jews of the

spiri-

Spinoza in his pantheistic conception

tually akin to

of things, although in a moral and not a naturalistic or animistic sense.

he

because

God

does not govern the world

the

world,

in

is

intangible; he lives with

men, he takes part

in their

renewed passion of God, which gives a logical sequence to events, and which creates history. History then cannot be a selection of memorable events how could it be, when compared with the infinity and ;

God?

eternity of

All painting, in so far as

anything,

depict

but

painting;

historical

is

function of history, and of historical painting, to exalt but

on

actions, the only

to teach

not

men

God

to suffer.

life,

human pride God. Of all human

himself came

The

down on

figures of

act; they suffer the light

and time,

not

one which does not offend or hide

suffering ;

is

is

actions, so that

does not conflict with or eclipse

God

the

the contrary to diminish, to minimize

human

the value of

can

it

earth

Rembrandt do

and the shade, space

things themselves. Therefore, although

and to recognize Him is to recognize ourselves, we must always recognize ourselves in others. Once we have overcome our first disgust, even the carcass of a flayed ox appears

God

is

tragic,

also in

worthy of

spirituality,

like

us,

a

Christ

deep

the

identification. If

which Rembrandt discovered that there can be communication among men without involving persuasion. For this reason Rembrandt, although resigned to man's fate, is also



a

rebel,

at

least

point of finding our

own

flayed ox, or in the corpse lying

reflection

on the

in

this

regards the authority of the

man's suffering and not of

made him

glory,

his

particularly dear to the Romantics, to Delacroix for

who was

example, and to Fromentin,

the

to

first

understand him.

behind Rembrandt

If

comedy of

the bitter

is

Bruegel, behind Velazquez

is

El Greco's tormented

asceticism and ardent yearning for the transcendental.

Just as

Rembrandt reacted

comic

to the

element without history, as he found

it

by renewing the vision of

so Velazquez

history,

in Bruegel,

reacted against his predecessor. In a century which

saw the triumph of the doctrine of immanence, he practised, in the highest and fullest sense of the term, a painting of immanence. Velazquez was a humanist too, the supporter, even, of

new human-

a

ism; but, unlike Rembrandt, he made a thorough study of the ancients. ever.

When

He

did not imitate them,

how-

he took up a mythological subject

The Triumph of Bacchus (or The Topers^, Apollo at Vulcan^ s Forge, Minerva and Arachne he placed it



in the present.

But the present, for him,

is

a

moment

of lucid awareness, not of uncontrolled passion.

opposed to Rubens, who had however a decisive influence on his development. He did not accept history as an eternal authority; nor did he In this he

reject

it

is

as a useless past; history for

manifested

ourselves to

as

ancients. His conception of history, as the story of

on the Cross; and not

we can humble

and

the great truth

is

the sphere in

because of the symbolic association but because of a

in fact,

of sadness and suffering

pity, full

arbitrary, absurd, a sin;

it is

without authority there can be no persuasion. This,

immanent though

only this secret presence, this perpetually

affairs. It is

on Divine Power,

delimits

which experience has completed and

itself in the

His culture therefore

consciousness, in the subject. is

fundamentally

Rubens with El Greco,

countered

him

correct the sensualism of the

first

critical;

in

he

order to

and the

spiri-

dissecting

tualism of the second; he confronted the Carracci

Anatomy Lesson^ we shall discover not only ourselves but God. There is no judgment in Rembrandt's reading of life, therefore there is no

with Caravaggio (and even Poussin with Ribera);

table in the

catharsis;

the

"historical" inflicts

only

action,

attitude is

to

to

suffer

adopt,

authority, for

is

only

what the world

and to resign ourselves to

individual will

the

reality.

The

not suppressed for the benefit of

God who

is

everywhere present in

he combined the tonal painting of Titian and the lighting of Tintoretto with the coloring of Veronese.

Francisco de the

harmony of

agreement

that in this

as early as

of his

way he achieved

govern in His Name.

is

at

derived

the "truth," not only

Las Meninas De

a statement of his poetics.

work among

1629 that

from the patches of color, and

painting

the "semblance," of feelings. In

Tolnay saw

no longer reposes

his

at a distance

the world does not delegate authority to anyone to If authority

Quevedo noted

The

painter

his models, within the picture

space; his attitude, with the intent gaze, and the

brush poised in his hand,

man gauging

that of a

is

a tonal value before attempting to fix

on the canvas the space ;

a

is

purely pictorial, but

geometrical precision and

consciousness has

own

its

way analogous with

equivalent

its

it

has

The human which is in no

clarity.

structure,

were one

that of nature (even

to recognize that nature has a structure). If painting is

a total act of consciousness, the structure of the

pictorial

form

autonomous

is

;

no way derived not even from speech. it is

in

from an analogy with nature, Caravaggio, too, had repudiated speech and presented the image as an absolute reality. But Velazquez created a speech which could be uttered only through painting. If there is a message to be communicated, it does not consist in what is said or shown by the painting painting can only communicate itself and, since it is an autonomous experience, clear and conscious, if it teaches something, it teaches that through the vision (and not only through philosophy or science) a clear, autonomous ;

experience can be achieved, manifesting the

consciousness

in

its

essence.

artist's

Only in the late had become Neo-

closest to the spirit

and thought of the Enlighten-

ment. His picture of The Painter

been described the

as a statement

portrays

artist

of his poetics within

himself,

the

back wall

mirrors

tapestries,

or

successive planes.

The

his

all

decorated with pictures,

is

shown on

often

picture

of a picture, the fiction of a

not

here

:

picture,

turning his back on the world. In almost interiors the

has

in his Studio

is

several

therefore the image

fiction. It takes its rise

of nature but of painting.

as a representation

In short, a painting cannot represent, cannot be,

anything but

itself. If

Vermeer was no innovator of

Dutch themes, it is simply because painting cannot proceed from anything other than painting. It is a colored surface on which the colors create a certain space which can be measured, but which is "impracticable," like the space we see in a mirror. The problem of the mirror-picture, contraditional

nected with the history of Flemish-Dutch painting since

the time of

unknown

to

Van Eyck, was

Vermeer. But there

certainly

not

a difference be-

is

tween the mirror which receives the image and the human eye which perceives it. Pure optical perception

may be

Likened to the reflection in a mirror, but

did the Triumph of Bacchus appear to be a parody after the manner of Jordaens. To "de-

actually

it

mythicize" history Velazquez did not resort to the

them.

comic element. He was not like Caravaggio, a social rebel, nor like Rembrandt, a recluse; he lived at the Royal Court, where he was a Chamberlain and he carried out his duties meticulously. However, he kept his distance, preserved his independence and affirmed his human dignity. Velazquez is the first

thus perception gives us the structure and spatiality

eighteenth century,

when

taste

classical,

whose work may be said to reflect the doctrine of immanence (i.e. the conception of God

painter

and throughout the created world).

as existing in

He

realized that the experience of painting

sufficient;

man, he

is

it

has

no

object

beyond

itself.

truly himself,

that he

is

free.

To

diately takes possession of visual data

Our

eyes see what our consciousness sees;

of consciousness. Painting constructed

does

perception.

a conscious process

is

of

This intellectual process

not destroy perception in

beyond

and elaborates

order to

reach

on the contrary, it intensifies perception, it constructs and gives it a spatial and existential framework. Vermeer is the only Dutch painter who can be said to give an it

to an abstract concept;

intellectual

representation

of space,

merely

not

is self-

an empirical or intuitive rendering of the sur-

As

rounding world; but the

for

in the sphere of conscious experience that

it is

does not exist because the mind imme-

authority,

constructing tion,

which

space in

is

itself

intellectual

implicit

in

involves

a

of values. The question of

process

visual

of

percep-

precise

choice

renewed and extended the content of painting,

which content or intellectual meaning is fully conveyed in the construction of form, is by no means eliminated. Vermeer resolves the problem by restating it in

Velazquez created the structure of modern picto-

terms of the

Velazquez opposes neither revolt, nor indifference,

nor resignation; but but

rial

tics,

self- awareness.

form; the

first

liberty,

So

which

that

was the

is

not evasion

while

Rembrandt

idol of the

Roman-

the second of the Impressionists ("the painters'

painter,"

The

Manet

called him).

third of the great humanists of the seventeenth

century

is

Vermeer.

He

is

also the

one

who comes

new

classical art, in

perception-consciousness relation-

wholly modern manner, with the genius who foresees the future, a greater innovator

ship, in a

of a

man

assuredly than those painters

who

history" or "classical nature."

Hence

held to "classical the fact that he

and that his importance has only been appreciated in our time.

was so soon forgotten

after his death,

CLASSICISM

Classicism,

in

the

did not involve a blind

seventeenth century,

acceptance of scholastic rules or a slavish imitation of forms inherited

from

The most classical-minded of

the past.

the seventeenth-century

Bellori, felt the need to describe the artists of his time as

theorists,

"modern" Classicism was, however, for the authority of

history. It

chiefly characteri:(ed

was a

of the late sixteenth century in

its respect

Mannerism

reaction against the

two opposing and complementary

its

and "caprice." It was a

aspects of "rule"

by

reaction, too, against the

"realism" of Caravaggio and his followers, for "realism," in

effect,

sundered art from culture, denied the authority and even the experience

of history, and reduced art

to

mere praxis. If "rule" "realism"

ness, refusal to recognise experience,

is

is rigidity, strict-

disorder

and tumul-

tuous, uncontrolled experience. In equal opposition to these two extremes,

classicism embraced the principle of order, not of rigid, hierarchical

was

order, but of "natural" order. This

the view of the greatest classicist

"My

of the seventeenth century, Nicolas Poussin. said, "forces

me

to seek out

and

confusion ..." This love of order Bellori could write of him

:

"As

love

was he

what

temperament," he

well ordered, to eschew

is

so characteristic of Poussin that

had read widely and observed much,

no topic ever arose in conversation as to which he had not satisfied himself,

and he marshalled

his words

and thoughts

priately that it was plain that he long

and

so readily

and appro-

had already considered

the matter

carefully."

The order of things is determined by nature, the order of human affairs by history. The ideal condition, therefore, would be history enacted in

a space and time which are "natural. " Our notion of both nature and

history is derived directly

from

the ancients ; they acted in accordance

with reason, and therefore with history, in a world conceived according to reason,

and

therefore according to nature.

Having

never

known

the

Christian revelation, they had no experience of religious ecstasy; but they also

knew nothing of

was

dilemma

the



the anguish

ecstasy

and

sin

and degradation of sin.

—which

tormented the

And

this

religious

conscience of the seventeenth century.

99

E. C. 22

NICOLAS POUSSIN (1594-1665). THE REALM OF FLORA, 163I. GEMALDEGALERIE, DRESDEN.

POUSSIN

REMBRANDT

In the face of freedom. This

is

RUBENS

this

dilemma

classicism represented a principle of

shown by the fact that the Carracci, whose

approach was basically

classical,

formulated an

aesthetic

eclectic theory

which

allowed the artist freedom of choice. So classicism was, or purported to

freedom which can spring only from man's experience of nature and history, in other words of culture. be, that true

In

this sense, classicism

was not

the exclusive doctrine of the great

Guido Reni, Dome-

seventeenth-century classicists, Annibale Carracci, nichino, Poussin,

Claude Lorrain and

Le Brun ;

elements of classicism

can also be discerned in Caravaggio, Rubens, Rembrandt and Vela^quei^.

For Rembrandt,

classicism always remained a great repertory of

images, even though he did not believe in the authority of classical history.

A painting like the Rape irony, even of satire.

babe abducted from

theme and drain

it

At

of Ganymede undoubtedly has a touch of any rate, by representing Ganymede as a mere

its cradle, the

painter wished to "de- mythicize" the

of any allegorical meaning.

Rubens' intention was substantially the same in a painting of three buxom Flemish women. associate his

ception

from

own

same ; but period has

classical,

its

forms

His

con-

but the subject was taken directly

In other words, the ideal structure of painting the

Graces^

evidently wished to

conception of beauty with a classical theme.

and composition were

life.

He

The Three

is

always the

in which it is expressed are manifold,

and each

own.

lOI

REMBRANDT

(1606-1669).

THE RAPE OF GANYMEDE,

1635.

GEMALDEGALERIE, DRESDEN.

RHETORIC AND ARCHITECTURE

R-hetoric, as persuasive speech,

bound

there

not necessarily

nor must it be translatable is employed in the figurative

to a literary text,

when it

in literary terms arts.

is

For there is

a rhetoric of architecture, just as

is

a rhetoric of painting

throughout the century, and reached

its

height in the

eighteenth century with the church of St Charles in

Vienna, expressly designed by Sedlmayr from

this

point of view.

and of sculpture.

We have seen that facades are no longer the section The

architecture of the seventeenth century did

not fundamentally renew the forms and types of classical architecture. It

was content

for the

most

part to develop the possibilities of variation for each

and only

type,

rarely deviated

original

an architecture of columns, arches, friezes, etc., although the laws of

formal principle. pilasters,

from the

It is

of a perspective, nor the surface which closes off a building unit.

Seen along the length of the

interior.

no longer respected. In architecture too. Mannerism had produced a break between the plastic form and its intellectual content. Defining the ideal conformation and proportions of the structural elements, it gave each of them a value in itself;

respect,

them into any pre-existing them no other value than

An

it

did not

spatial structure;

gave

that of a simple image.

architectural iconography thus emerged,

more

it

fit

all

the

but a

it

new urban

plastic

its spatial

or plastic quality

than in the facades of

is

more marked

civil architecture. It

normally

two movements, one outwards, towards the street, the other inwards. The most typical example is the church of Santa Susanna (1603), designed by Maderna. The fagade forms a decorative pattern built up around the keynote of the structure, the door. The engaged columns suggest a portico or pronaos, but one merged into the surface. The empty space suggests

of the door

is

magnified by the curving

tympanum

structure.

In addition to these flattened projections, there are

each architectural element was the

form of a

with neighboring

holds out an invitation to enter. In this

it

small, deeply recessed niches

Originally,

the

related

was no longer a hypothetical creation dependent on geometry and perspective, space to which

;

strikes a contrast

street,

and the triangular pediment of the simulated portico it is repeated higher up in the central window, and once again in the great pediment crowning the facade.

formal manifestations, because the

free in its

far as

whose axis deviates from that of the church, and which have no relationship with its

buildings

relation than rhythmical repetitions;

belong

to design fagades

position and value of these elements in the design

did not aspire to any other principle in their

now

of which they form part. Borromini went so

church fagade

it

visual objects, they

rather to the street or the square than to the building

proportion and symmetry, which determine the as a whole, are

As

structural function; henceforth, as

ing statues.

The

on

either side contain-

frontal surface has thus been so

much broken up

that

it

almost ceases to

exist.

Its

a result of the evolution of building technique, the

remaining planes serve as the connecting link be-

was independent of the equilibrium of the plastic values. But as these elements preserve the arrangement which they had when they were part of a system of forces and a spatial figuration, they become symbols of a function which no

tween the architectural members which suggest an emerging plastic structure, and the recesses which suggest a receding perspective. Maderna was trained in the Mannerist tradition and tends to reduce the plastic to the linear. But Pietro da Cortona in Santa Maria della Pace, and Bernini in Sant' Andrea al

structural function

longer

exists.

The symbolic

function thus replaces

the real function; and the symbol intellectual value,

tional

value.

but a practical

Architectural

no longer has an and communica-

allegory

developed

Quirinale,

make

the entrance a veritable architec-

columned portico, and develop the fagade above the entrance. In the

tural organism, a this

motif in

twin churches in the Piazza del Popolo, the

obvious as there was often no longer any structural

classical

form of the round temple, which Bernini himself had revived in working out the urban arrangements of the Pantheon, is reduced to the junction, on the same axis, of two essential elements the portico, or entrance to the church, and the cupola, which :

symbolizes the heavens.

reason for using columns. In the colonnade in front '

of St Peter's, the enormous columns bear no weight; Bernini aligned them four by four, like figures in a procession. Perrault, in the fagade of the Louvre,

aligned the columns like a bodyguard of soldiers

presenting arms. Rainaldi, in Santa Maria in Campi-

—established by Bramante design for St Peter's —as the crown of a well-balanced system

them up to the second story of the facade like banners on flag-poles, repeating them Uke the hosannas of a hymn. Still more than symbols, they are emblems, or signs; but it would be a mis-

of volumes. Michelangelo had tried to integrate

take to suppose that their function

telli,

In the seventeenth century, the cupola too lost function

its

in his

it

into the dynamics of the building as a whole, but in fact

he removed

in the static

retained

its

and

it

from the key position

plastic

vault of heaven

;

but

it

had had

complex. Thus the cupola

meaning

original

it

as

an allusion to the

could be raised or lowered,

widened or narrowed, according to the play of masses in the building, and even according to the urban landscape around it. Henceforth the cupola of a church did not even have to correspond to the intersection of the nave and transept, nor did it necessarily occupy a central position in the ground plan. In churches with a central plan, it develops and compensates by its height for the perspective recession of the nave. In the church of Sant'Agnese, Borromini erected the cupola directly over the fagade, so that the concavity of the latter

is

compensated

by the convexity of the drum and he raised it higher in order to oppose a vertical component to the longitudinal expanse of the Piazza Navona. Rainaldi, in Santa Maria in Campitelli, saw no need to build the cupola over the sacred area of the altar, and placed it in the most favorable visual position. ;

By being reduced tion,

to a purely representative func-

the classical architectural elements acquired

which explains why the structural members of Baroque architecture appear heavy, grandiose, turgid. They are designed to impress upon us the "monumentality" of the building, to display its ideological significance and allegorical content. The column, which is a static element of the monument, is a support whose shape, size and frequency are determined by the composite weight it has to bear. Since antiquity this static function had had its ideological equivalent; the column was an image of stability and strength. But now that the great problem of the Church was that of upholding its threatened dogmas, the column became a symbol of the stability of the faith. This symbolism is the more greater prominence,

hoisted

is

only decorative.

Columns, tympana, friezes, pilasters, and recesses preserve at bottom their original character as spacedefining elements, and if they fail to achieve a spatial construction, they represent space visually, or rather

they

make an imaginary

modeled

space visible.

The

great

and the heavy cornices suggest a relationship between distant planes; the triangular tympana suggest the convergence in foreshortened friezes

perspective of

two

parallel vertical lines

;

the curved

tympana recall the curvature of the horizon. One might almost suppose that this real architecture was designed in imitation of painted architecture for ;

structure

is

not that of tectonic space, but of purely

visual space.

The

architect's

concern with visual

away from strictly structural requirements. Thus optical and psychological illusionism, both on the conscious and the unconscious level, became an essential feature of the building and was sought for its own sake. Artificial perspective, which pretended to give a true and exact representation of visual reality, and thus to determine the correspondence between the structural and plastic elements, no longer had any raison d'etre, except as a effects

drew

its

his attention

special case within a

much wider

perspective frame-

work. Bernini uses ordinary perspective, which projects the images on a curved rather than a flat surface. This

is

why

he changed the original rectangular plan

of St Peter's Square, making

it

first

round, then

and accordingly corrected the perspective of the nave of St Peter's and of the Scala Regia. Guarini, in his perspective, took up the theory of projections, even going so far as to use cast shadows elliptical;

as

formal and constructive values.

no longer abides by the laws of construction in space, but makes space visible in the infinite variety of its possible forms, it is no longer a plastic form inserted into the perspective of space, If the building

but a crystallization of space

itself.

Dimensions

The

become more important than proportions; more emphasis is laid on the contrast than on the harmony

course, the political

of verticals and horizontals; surfaces are developed

prosperity of the ruling classes,

and planes multiplied the relation between voids and masses is varied freely and rhythmically;

explain the grandiose demonstrativeness of Baroque

endlessly,

;

allowance is

is

made

for chance plays of light

and the building

freely articulated,

close

relationship

common

with

its

natural

is

;

the plan

placed in

The

setting.

no longer dictated by a but by experience. Space is

notion of space

mathematical principle,

is

the city and the countryside, considered each for

own

its

sake or in their relationship to one another.

desire to display the divine authority and, of

What was the rhetoric? What was

the building and

its

surroundings rules out any

tinction, in terms of value,

dis-

between the external and

is

not sufficient to

exact aim of this archi-

tectural

it

meant to demonstrate

which could not have been demonstrated without architecture? We have seen that its great novelty was the idea that space does not enclose architecture, but is

made

through

visible

presupposes nature, elements.

its

its

forms; thus architecture

only as the spatial setting of

if

As forms became more complicated

the

motif was increasingly developed until

predominated in the decoration but it also hastened the break-up of the traditional building designs it

;

by introducing a

freer

movement of masses,

a wider

the internal: the architectural space tends always to

use of curving surfaces, and a closer connection of

mark

the building with

the limit of real space

imaginary space. The

first

was Pietro da Cortona, e Martina. Space here

and the beginning of

architect to realize this

in the church of Santi

is

Luca

its

surroundings, whether park or

garden, by means of flights of stairs, terraces, exedrae

and projecting or receding building

units.

defined by the plastic arti-

culation of the walls, and by the suggested projec-

Towards

on

end of the seventeenth century nature water, trees, open sky became an essential part of the urban setting. For Carlo Fontana the Tiber was the vital artery of Rome, just as St Peter's was the structural and historical nucleus of the city. His successors devised an "open architecture," with buildings and wings of buildings freely laid out and

the contrary are variously modulated through an

diversified with loggias, porticoes, stairways, terraces

interplay of perspective foreshortenings, the wall

and parks dotted with pavilions and garden statues. Already in the early years of the century, moreover, Bernini had modified Maderna's designs for the Palazzo Barberini and made it almost a villa within

and recesses in the surface of the architectural members. The function of the "plastic" wall is not tions

unlike that of theatrical scenery;

it

defines at once

the space in front and the unseen space behind.

because the spatial elements of

from

it

or receding into

it,

sight;

it

But

this wall, projecting

are not

all

equal, but

cannot be taken in by the eye along a single

line

of

can only be taken in by a moving spectator

within the building. ,

the state, and the

architecture.

naturalistic

This conception of the free relationship between

power of

When

the church has a central

Luca e Martina, and in most of the churches designed by Bernini, Borromini, and Rainaldi, the wall "unrolls" before us. The foreshortenings, projections, and recesses seem to develop or to contract under our very eyes; the columns rise up for a moment as if isolated, then take plan, as in the church of Santi

their place in the m.odulated surface

of the wall. The

the





the city. Architecture, in fact, had

nature grafted on the

and prolonging it with the help of the human imagination. Nature was the

original setting of

highest form

human

life;

civilized society.

But there

"natural" and "artificial"

the society of the

tudinal or a central plan or a combination of both.

election.

True, Fischer von Erlach and Balthasar

Neumann

(and also Vittone in Piedmont) revert to the dislocation of pillars in the interior, but only with a

view to creating perpective vistas, "repoussoir" effects, and divergent or secondary perspectives.

it,

exalts

it.

is

whose

the setting of

between nature; man's handiwork is

the traditional type of church, with either a longi-

extends

architecture,

the capital city,

is

does not contradict that of

this,

a second

first

which Rainaldi had already realized in Santa Maria in Campitelli, and which eventually led to the free designs of German Baroque churches in the eighteenth century, was the end of consequence of

become

a continuity

God

but continues

In the frescoes of Gaulli and

Pozzo, architecture towers into the heavens; the

bond which

The

it,

it

is

unites the society of the living with

art

elect. It is

of

therefore a process of

edifying in the true

and

in the

word, architecture has the task of disposing the human mind to a life in one dimension, in a space without earthly limits. Being figurative sense of the

at

once

elocutio

and

dispositio, it

has the dual aim of

giving both pleasure and instruction.

4 THE FACADE The most tecture

is

problem of Baroque

interesting

archi-

unquestionably that of the facade. Visually,

the fagade belongs to the external setting of the building, it

it

forms part of the

street or the square;

has a demonstrative function, a display value, in

the public eye.

But what

or represent

the significance or import of the build-

is

ing to which

it is

it is

designed to demonstrate

connected. Generally, the fagade

complex organism, articulated and elastic, in which two opposing thrusts balance each other, one outwards, the other inwards. The urban space was thus no longer confined to that of the streets and

is

a

squares ; the internal space of a church, of a corridor or a courtyard, of the great staircase of a palat^t^o^

of the urban complex for being closed

no

less part

off

from the open

street. It, too, is a place

intercourse, for the

life

closed, interior space. barrier,

it is

is

but connects;

it

of the city goes on in

The

a partition;

of social

it

fagade

is

this

therefore not a

does not close in or

enables communication.

isolate,

We may

communication between two spatial entities, differing in scale and luminous intensity, but of equal urban and functional interest. VisuaUy, this double thrust, outwards and inwards, is expressed in two ways, which are often combined: describe

first,

it

as creating

the alternation of projecting structural elements

(columns, pilasters, tympana, cornices) containing niches and recesses which

go

to create perspective;

GIAN LORENZO BERNINI: PARADE OF THE PALAZZO BARBERINI, ROME. FINISHED IN 1633.

no

GUARINO

FRANCESCO BORROMINI: CHURCH OF SANT'aGNESE, ROME, 1653-1657.

Ill

112

background, almost to the horizon. Then Bernini, developing his colonnade as an open form, referred

back to the closed volume of the cupola; that is, he took it as the keynote in the urban space of the square; but he also used Maderna's facade as a middle

term, or pause, between the cupola and the oval of the square. Borromini,

on the other hand, by hollow-

ing out the fa9ade of the church of Sant'Agnese in the Piazza ly

on the

Navona, brought the cupola to bear

direct-

fa9ade, thereby creating a vertical axis to

compensate for the length of the horizontal axis of the Piazza. Here again, the facade serves as a connecting link between two opposed volumetric

entities.

Pietro da Cortona, in Santa Maria della Pace,

went

as far as to destroy the unity of the facade, breaking

up into an assemblage of surfaces variously curved, distributed on different levels, and brought into harit

mony with the adjacent buildings and

streets.

Access

was had by way of entrances put through the fagade itself, as in the perspective vistas on the stage of Palladio's Teatro Olimpico at Vicenza. The curved portico itself, almost Bramantesque in design, is to these

adjusted to the perspective axes of the streets leading

The

between the fagade and the interior is fundamental. In Baroque architecture, the fagade is always in effect the cornice and development of the doorway to the church, and as

to the church.

such

is

relation, too,

an invitation to the faithful to enter; but

must not forget directly to the

that the axis of the entrance leads

and that this closes the which meets the eye on entering.

high

perspective vista

altar,

In the church of Sant'Andrea

emphasizes

we

this perspectival

al

Quirinale, Bernini

and ideological

relation-

from the body of monumental structure with

ship by separating the high altar

by means of a coupled columns and a great pediment; this can be regarded as an "internal fagade," which re-echoes the theme of the street fagade. the church

CHURRIGUERA

SANTA CROCE, LECCE

Baroque architecture had a special character of its own in Spain and, largely owing to Spanish influence, in the south of Italy. In spite of the feeble attempts of fuan de

Herrera and

create something new, the severe

the Italian

Mannerism of the

G.B.

Crescen'^i to

late sixteenth century

many years ;

innovations were confined, for the most part,

to the excessive decoration

of doorways and windows. Towards the end

continued for

of the century, however, the "official" ornamentation of Mannerist

was swept away hy

architecture

the rise of the Churrigueresque style.

The art of Churriguera originated altar screens, and gradually spread to

and as

it

many of

contained

Plateresque ornamentation,

it

in the decoration of retables, or

the whole architectural structure

the traditional motifs of Gothic

;

and

reintroduced these into seventeenth-century

architecture.

Something very similar happened in southern Italy, notably at Lecce, where a local

style developed

which

is best

exemplified in the church of

Santa Croce, begun by Francesco Zimbalo. The churches here were often old,

of Romanesque or Gothic origin; the old structure was retained,

while the decoration

The prevailing

taste

and facade were renewed

now was for

in the style of the day.

strongly projecting

members

(pilasters,

columns, balconies, etc.), which had hoivever no structural function; their chief purpose

was

to

break up and animate surfaces, thereby

accentuating the pictorial vivacity of the decorations

and

enriching the

play of light among them.

The predominant

influence

Spanish and Portuguese.

No

is to be found in architecture,

in

Latin American art

trace of local art,

many

of course

A^tec, Maya, or Inca,

whose forms were dictated by the religious

or political authority of the conquerors. decoration of

is

But

the elaborate

and

colorful

churches reveals the persistence of the tastes,

sometimes the themes, of the native craftsmen.

For political

and

reasons it

suited the conquerors to keep the local art traditions alive, or at least to

modify them only gradually. But

it is clear

that these traditions were

only those of a popular art, tolerated as a kind of folklore, in which

very

little

survived of the great figurative art of pre-Columbian times.

E. C. 26

OSE DE CHURRIGUERA (1665-I725). HIGH ALTAR OF THE

CHURCH OF SAN ESTEBAN, SALAMANCA,

1693-1696.

LA COMPANIA,

BOGOTA

SANTA MARIA DEL ROSARIO, PUEBLA

The most important art in

center in the

New

World, and the one

which "colonial" art was most strongly ajfected by Spanish

was Mexico. The conquest was followed by an

influence,

initial Plateresque

phase ;

then came the period of the great cathedrals ( Mexico City, Puebla,

Guadalajara,

etc.)

.

Most

of these churches were built on a longitudinal

plan, with a transept, a cupola, and a nave subdivided by pillars ; the dimensions were generally on a grand scale, and the interior was rich in paintings ( usually canvases by local artists imitating Spanish prototypes in

a provincial

screens enclosing

style), in gilded

and

colored carvings,

and openwork

an altar or a chapel. Often, as in the fortress-churches

of the sixteenth century, the facades had flanking towers.

In the high South American plateau around Lake Titicaca, the ancient sacred land of the Incas, the tradition of native art continued longer than in Mexico.

The churches were

often built on the site of

Indian temples, and their decoration was often inspired by themes from the native art of

pre-Columbian times (Bolivia, Ecuador, Peru).

Brazil possessed its own Baroque

style, in

which Portuguese influence

was naturally dominant. The Baroque of the great mining cities, particularly of Ouro Preto, has an original character of its own, which is

its

lacking in the "Coastal Baroque" (at Recife for example), with

unbroken, luminous surfaces. The abundance of gold ( its export was

forbidden, to prevent aggravating the economic crisis in Europe) , and

a plentiful supply of rare woods and colored for the rich decoration of Bra':(iUan Baroque ;

stones, were responsible

indeed, the architectural

was only a pretext for lavish ornament. The greatest South American sculptor of the time, Francisco Lisboa, known as O Aleija-

structure

dinho ("The Little Cripple" ), worked in the church of Sao Francisco

at Ouro Preto

; his

bold and elegant carvings are strangely reminiscent

of Late Gothic art in Germany.

THE CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA DEL ROSARIO, PUEBLA, MEXICO.

I

20

THE CHURCH OF SANTA MARIA DEL ROSARIO, PUEBLA, MEXICO.

121

TECHNIQUE

The

and dynamism of the "modern" world, the formation of complex social limitless

organisms

extension

and the

like the state

capital city, led

work point of view, we may say

On

but originated in the sixteenth century. social level,

the

sought to maintain the distinction

it

between "mechanical"

and

crafts

activity,

artistic

inevitably to a renewal of the instruments of

by placing the

and production. From this that Baroque art is the great technical contribution

In fact only art considered as persuasive rhetoric

to the Counter-Reformation, the Catholic solution

religion,

to the concrete

problem of human

we

enterprise. If

the

to

related

first

of the second.

at the service

higher

activities

which deal with the

of politics

is

and

spiritual salvation

of

technical

of

humanity.

agree with the principle of salvation by works, and

concede the

finalistic

and

soterial character

of human

technique must be "creative"; that

corrected

the

errors

it

Bernini by attaching a spiritual value to the praxis

must continue in society the work of creation whose principle and pattern were laid down by God in

of architecture, and by emphasizing the inspired

action,

nature. In so far as

natural

way

in

it

is

imagination, art

which man may

because science, developing

act; the

now on

is,

is

the

more so

lines

inde-

pendent of religious dogma, and of philosophical speculation,

worked out an applied technique which,

being an epiphenomenon, cannot be or soterial.

The

treatises

strictly finalistic

of Ramelli (1588) and Zonca

(1607) are proof of the possibilities offered, even in the practical field, by a scientific and

merely

empirical

approach

to

the

no longer

problems

of

When

in the last years of the sixteenth century,

Domenico Fontana Square and moved

erected the obelisk in St Peter's

the Cappella del Presepio into

Santa Maria Maggiore, he showed that an architect

must

also be

an engineer

who knows how

techniques elaborated outside the

and

element that enters into technique (the furor of

Leonardo, and

later

of Lomazzo)

—an element already

affirmed, in a revolutionary manner,

of Caravaggio. If technique activity, the classical

collapses. parallel

not implied a priori

world created by God, and

in the natural

human

is

by the painting

Art

is

a purely

is

theory of art as mimesis

no longer

a

or

representation

of nature, but the creation of a second, and

different,

kind of nature.

fantasy by separating

it

Why

as a

any

set

to

limit

mere caprice from the

"natural imagination"? Fantasy, too,

is

a product of

the mind, and nothing authorizes us to believe that

mechanics.

therefore

possessing

a

to use

artistic tradition

purely

instrumental

But by adapting them to the purposes of art, he conferred on these techniques a finalistic meaning and value. The fact that Bernini and Pietro da Cortona separated the technique of construction from that of the visual or imaginative arts, shows that the former was already subordinated to the latter. In fact, the architecture of both of these artists, though visually perfect, is often character.

defective as far as the constructional technique

is

concerned. This attitude was not a traditional one,

122

Borromini

it

works against the providential designs of God;

it

is

neither abstract nor "chimerical," because

its

images, achieved by technique, are visible, concrete,

added on, like a new series, to those of the created world, and do not repeat them. Modern man does not live in nature but in the city, and the city is a landscape designed and created by man. real.

Its

They

space

are

is

created by architecture;

it

but an "other" space.

It

fictitious space,

is

not a

has other

dimensions, other proportions, other rhythms;

it

does not repeat the equilibrium of nature (in which, in

any

case,

no one believed any more), but has the

impetus, the tension, the fury, the raptures, the rigors, the upsurges,

human

soul in

its

cendental. Socially,

and also the emptiness, of the

anxious yearning for the trans-

human work finds

itself promoted

to the rank of spiritual activity. Bernini

master

who

is

a great

conceives and directs; Borromini

is

a

who

craftsman

on

creates

a

sublime

He

level.

means of pro-

a miracle, technique appears as the

climbs on the scaffolding, takes the trowel and

ducing a miracle. Guarini found

from the masons, changes the plan while executing it, creates image after image in an everincreasing intoxication; feverish and unstable, his

and technical reason the impulse which carried him

chisel

designs are not projects, but passionate attempts to

master his materials.

He

unconsciously recreates the

common effort of a group common goal. Bernini reproach-

medieval workshop, the

working towards a ed him for this and accused him of being a "Gothic" In this ascetic process,

artist.

in

this

work," he enrols the whole "people."

"edifying

He

despises

to the level of transcendental reason.

The

difficulty

lay in

art

spectacular monumentality,

value

ship. In his architecture, in fact,

workmanship product

of

of

The

and

stone-cutters.

infinitely diversified.

stage

carvers

cution; every artist has his praxis, and he often

him with his Borromini is more

modifies technique according to the type of image.

Borromini's follower, Guarini, a

of calculated willfulness,

gilders,

work of Theatine monk, in the

He was

who made

the theorist

his point

by

it,

absurd. Architecture for

but to put

would mean

it

into practice.

to eliminate

it

To

demonstrate

as a hypothesis

it

or a

Now, to eliminate the problematical element of human life is to eliminate God. Guarini problem.

Borromini's

carries

"extravagances"

to

a

point

where they become paradoxical, even paroxysmal. By multiplying the structural members, making them rise out of one another in an endless sequence,

:

there are those of illusionism, of

In painting, as in architecture and sculpture, the

medium and

him is the work of fantasy, which consists in drawing up hypotheses. To verify a hypothesis does not mean to demonstrate

way of the

The techniques of

focusing. Infinite, too, are the techniques of exe-

was reached

philosopher and mathematician.

thus

skilled

no longer concealed; own substance, and there is no

the material are

the image has critical

everything;

visualize

arrangement, of composition, of near and distant

of a cabinet-maker than an architect.

The

has to turn everything into

artist

the

Milizia criticizes says that

and

century;

harmonious, highly

when he

usual malice

is

a vision

vision are infinite

of stucco-workers,

brotherhood

technique

on

fruit

see the finest

seventeenth

the

vast,

a

we

becomes

a table, seen in a certain light,

phenomena, he must

but in the workman-

breaks up into an

it

of phenomena. Even a basket of

infinity

thing can be done with brick and plaster, because itself

is

most

strives to obtain its greatest effects, its

a revelation.

not in the thing

the fact that if vision

always a phenomenon, every phenomenon tends to present itself as a vision; at the very moment when

noble materials, precious marbles; for him, every-

is

in practical reason

its

reason for concealing nature. It

is

it,

for

it

is

the material of

true that art should conceal art, but

not in the sense of simulating nature. In painting, the texture of the pigments

is

unctuous;

of the paint brush, of

it

retains the trace

the artist's touch.

what

hide

artifice, to

make

most complicated rally, at

the

first

mean

conceal art does not

painted must seem natural,

that

is

To

often thick, heavy,

it

means to

the observer feel that even the

obtained

effects are

natu-

easily,

attempt. Fervent speech which

is

more persuasive than any other; without furor there can be no art; but just as speech must remain speech, so painting must moving and

pathetic

is

remain painting. Here the gesture play; the

movement of

itself

comes into

the hand which applies the

as eloquent as that

of the orator, and the

he abolished every principle of equilibrium in a

colors

giddy swirl of rhythms. But

on the canvas is as eloquent as the orator's gesture. Even the simulation of furor may be achieved in an inspired sweep of the brush, in a cascade of touches, which are perhaps not as

a superior

this

extravagance obeys

its

rhythm implies an

form of reason;

underlying mathematical principle. In Paris, Guarini

made

He

contact with the "occasionalist" philosophers.

believed that

God

is

no longer revealed

motionless nature, but in the

and human

in

movement of thought

Every image conceived by the mind carries in itself the law of a transcendental rationalism, which is quite illogical. The technique of art gives visible form to thought; by the same

token

And

it

activity.

manifests the presence of

since the

God

phenomenon which

in thought.

reveals

God

is

is

rhythm of

the colors

demonstrative, but quite as persuasive, as a "flood

of words." Such Boschini

admired

is

the case with Maffei, especially

for

the

whom

disordered

impetuosity of his pictorial language. In the same way, following the example of Bernini, sculptors aimed at "naturalness" in rendering in

marble the softness of

hair, the

warmth of the

flesh,

the shimmering folds of garments

extended the limits of an

been confined to a few

art

they thus greatly

;

which had hitherto

"classical" types.

Henceforth

was possible to represent in sculpture a windblown palm tree, a transparent dress, a waterfall. But always the aim was not the similarity of the

it

sculpture with the natural object, but the naturalness

of the image.

One might even

back to nature only to show, by naturalness of

its

own

say that art referred literal similarity,

the

processes of

be, as in the past,

we

musical instruments,

etc.

same work, revealing thereby that the artists themselves believed there was a relationship between a certain category of objects and the technique

in the

suitable for representing them.

technician of vision,

is

even recasting

it

the act and process of painting.

it is

lived.

that

is

And

visible,

since

its

who

reveals

It is

for art to dislife

as

scope embraces everything

everything that

is

possible,

its

sphere

the positive character of worldly experience as a

stepping-stone to salvation.

In reaction against this grandiose technique of the

image, and this cyclic relation between imagination

and action, the

artists

For painting, the moment of crisis occurred with the advent of specialization. Because the painter a technician of vision,

who must

forms,

it

of painters, or

Each "genre" had

was

translate every-

inevitable

specialists, its

is

own

that

should be technicians,

subdivided sometimes into secondary categories. landscapists,

portraitists,

still

life

and perspective painters; but landscapists were subdivided into "veduta" painters and painters of architecture and of ruins; and among still life

of the following century

sought to create objects rather than images

and

—to do

act regardless of creative or spiritual values. is

the thesis of action for action's sake, of

profit for profit's sake,

painters,

therefore one

being a

the value of visible things; this value emerges in

This

altogether.

find

artist,

Church, which was to show the necessity and

radically during the execution, or

Thus we

The

work of art. recorded moments

drafts for the

which might or might not be used in the final work, but which retained an autonomous value, and indeed were often reproduced by engraving. Not all painters had recourse to preliminary sketches: Caravaggio, Rembrandt, and Velazquez worked out the picture as they went along, often changing it

formed.

often collaborated

of action coincided with the social program of the

They were phases of inspiration,

categories

They

creation that sketches ceased to

rough

thing into visible

game,

find specialists in flowers, fruits,

cover and define the value of experience, of

images.

Such was the concern now with the actual artistic

painters

of the limitless accumulation

of riches to be reinvested in the productive process. This

is

the Protestant thesis in

which Max Weber

recognized the Calvinist basis of industrial production and capitalism. But thesis,

typically

bourgeois,

this is evidently a class

directed

against

the

program of the CounterReformation, in other words against Baroque art, which in the last resort aimed at giving life to a technology more closely bound up with aesthetics than with science, and thereby creating, ultimately, social

and

technical

a great "popular" art of universal appeal.

TECHNIQUE In the

first

edition of Bellori's "Lives," the bio-

graphy of Caravaggio

is

preceded by an allegorical

image (an old woman) who, represents praxis.

The

as the caption explains,

implication

is

that theory

meant nothing to Caravaggio; all that mattered to him was the praxis of pictorial composition. The Mannerists opposed praxis to theory, as the practical aspect to the intellectual aspect of art; it was therefore considered as no more than a handicraft, and as such was despised. But now that theory had become less important and praxis had the upper hand, the manner in which he handled the paints was sufficient to characteri2e

and

if

an

artist.

praxis does not confine

Praxis is technique, itself to

displaying

or translating any given value, but realizes the value itself,

we may

say that technique

is

no longer manual

execution but the process of determining values.

In this sense, the seventeenth-century conception of artistic

technique anticipated the modern view of

technique as a productive and creative as well as

an executive or repetitive activity. Borromini was not a great constructor; for pure constructive invention, Bernini was far greater. But

Borromini was a great

technician

of construction for ;

him, constructive invention did not precede the technical execution, but

through

it.

was developed and

ActuaUy, in his

case,

we

realized

should not speak

of invention, but of constructive inspiration.

GUARINO GUARINI: INTERIOR OF THE DOME, CAPPELLA DELLA SINDONE, TURIN,

128

1668.

GIAN LORENZO BERNINI: THE FOUNTAIN OF THE RIVERS, DETAIL, 1648-165 I. PIAZZA NAVONA, ROME.

GIAN LORENZO BERNINI: BUST OF FRANCESCO I d'eSTE, DETAIL, 165O-165I. GALLERIA ESTENSE, MODENA.

,

i

I

PETER PAUL RUBENS: SKETCH FOR THE "MARRIAGE OF MARIE De' MEDICI," DETAIL, 1622-1623. PRIVATE COLLECTION, PARIS.

If

we

closely

may have is

we

examine a painting by Rubens

the impression that the technical execution

hasty and careless ; this group of hands

evidently

is

obtained with a few rapid, fluid brushstrokes. In fact,

Rubens wished

"value"

to achieve a light

in order to isolate

;

it,

and color

he eliminated

all

des-

cription of the object. Therein lay his prodigious

technique.

It is clear

that this subordination of the

painting to purely coloristic and luminous values

could not have been preconceived;

it

resulted

from

the intensity and internal coherence of the painter's

brushwork.

Among

architects,

no one gave more thought

to

the problem of technique as a generator of images

than Guarini. in the cupola

The

by him Sindone in Turin

structural forms designed

of the Cappella della

are a real tour deforce; the beauty of the chapel springs

from the rhythm which he develops beyond the Umits of equilibrium, and from the perfect but precarious intersection of forces in tension.

Even

the

perspective, hitherto only a formula for spatial construction,

becomes

a technique for creating images

theorists themselves consider

the rhythmic repetition space. It

thought; but itself

human

as a rule

governing

and revolution of forms

true that technique

is

it

reason,

is

in

a product of rational

which

is

God

given,

is

a miracle and therefore capable of producing

miracles.

Thus it always

thanks to

its

own

surpasses

itself; it

progresses

creative vitality.

"Technique and the Miracle," or "Technique and Providence," might serve as alternative

titles

for the

Miracle of St Philip Neri painted by Pietro da Cortona

on the

ceiling of Santa

Maria in Vallicella in Rome.

The Virgin and angels invoked by the saint intervene to support the tottering scaffolding of a church under

construction.

show

The

artist

probably wished only to

a miracle ; but he could not resist emphasizing

the complicated structure of the scaffolding, as well as the physical or mechanical intervention of

Providence which guides a protects

it,

and corrects

its

human

Divine

undertaking,

inevitable mistakes.

I

I

i

1

*

I

II

THE WORLD STAGE

THE GENERAL AND THE PARTICULAR TThere world

are so

that the

many facts and real things in this only way of coordinating them is by

The theory of "genres" was formulated painting; but in fact

it

applies to

all

the arts.

segregating them into classes. Because the concept

very fact of isolating each genre limits the

of unique form (nature), or that of

any

is

no longer

are

species.

a hierarchy

life,

up

of the



who

with

all its citizens.

infinite "quantity."

level, the universal

the opposite pole

On

living his

own life

Universal values are

becomes the "general," while

at

the "particular." In the

and political order, the "particular" was defined by Guicciardini in his thesis on the politics social

own

its

without allowing ideals to enter. But cular," that

the individual

is

if

merits,"

the "parti-

man, takes part in

and history, there is only a difference of quantity between the universal (or the general) and the particular. In art, too, there are general and particular facts and values which are also organized politics

in a hierarchy; this

is

recognized in the Academies.

But between those who produce the first and those who produce the second, there is only a difference of degree, which is destined to disappear.

The

dividing line

distinction

between

is

described in the Aristotelian

comedy and

and they can be the cause of happiness

The characters of comedy are whose doings depend upon chance,

all.

ordinary people,

not upon supreme laws; interest, this

is

if

subdivisions.

Along with monumental

we have country houses and with

statuary,

small-scale

garden sculpture,

they are to be of any

only because they represent ordinary

etc.

its

own

tradition,

its

tradition,

ornamental

sculpture,

In painting, the conflict

HoUanda

based on Flemish

is

art.

Francisco de

said that Michelangelo considered Flemish

form of imitation uninspired by ideals, an optical illusion and a betrayal of the feelings. But Leonardo appreciated it for its analytical exactness. The question was stated in terms of the universal and the particular, i.e. of a possible synthesis, which had in fact been attempted by the Italian Mannerists, and by the Flemish "Romanists." In the art as a

seventeenth century, Caravaggio asserted that

no harder

it is

to paint a historical than a flower picture,

while Claude Lorrain, a landscape painter, raised

form of painting to the level of history. Salvator Rosa was a history painter with a taste for the capriccio, for genre. Vermeer was a genre painter that

who

attained a kind of metaphysical speculation.

It is in these historical

between the two European traditions or cultures, that the essential facts of European art are to be explained. The influence of Caravaggio in France, Spain and the Low Countries changed the conception of history in those lands, by transferring it

from the past to the present. Facts are represented

of manners, as to

"historical" art aims at the ideal,

and "genre"

imitates the best,

the second the mediocre, even the inferior.

terms, of the dialectical

relation

why

first

dwellings; and

masters of the Renaissance. Genre painting also has

as historical events;

The

civil

architecture,

based on the art of the great

people as the playthings of chance. This explains art at the characteristic.

a

not only one of categories. History painting has

The whose

actions and sufferings are of interest to everyone,

or sadness to

is

tragedy.

characters of a tragedy are historical figures,

to the polis^

not genre. History painting

Together with history painting, we have the painting of landscapes, portraits, and still lifes, with all their

symbolizes the

of the useful, as "each case on

is

of

from the

the terrestrial and social

we have

which

field

genre too, like monumental architecture or statuary.

no longer paramount, although everyone recognizes them; they are no longer of absolute "quality," but of

art

The

as there

just as in society there

from the individual,

to the sovereign,

state,

hierarchy

a

is

particular to the universal is

many forms

valid, there are as

But there

infinite species,

for

he gave to the representation

still lifes,

the gravity, the density

of meaning of a historical or religious painting.

The

reaction to this antithesis between history and

Rome

genre appeared in

pictures

low-life

first

van Laer and

his

Velazquez's

stay in

first

towards 1630, with the ("bambocciate") by Pieter

group.

This

coincided

Rome, and almost

with

certainly

with that of Louis Le Nain.

The theme of the humble and poor, the elect of God, invested with a nobility surpassing that of all other classes, is

evangelical

is

;

but the evangelical text

and here the poor man finds proof nobility. There is, in fact, no moral

also historical,

own

great nobleman, the miseries of a dispossessed king" (f.

398).

for

it

Misery

is

a better teacher than grandeur,

gives us a better understanding of humility and

A

Le Brun sees only the "logical" contrast between light and dark, but Le Nain perceives all the subde tonal relations. The contours which Le Brun traces with a sure hand become, for Le Nain, tremulous and emotionally real values.

painter of kings like

of enclosing the figure, they bring

alive; instead

into close relationship with

it

surroundings. Every

its

which helps us

experience in

life

difference

godhead

ourselves

subject in itself essential.

works of Livy or Tacitus, because God selects the most unexpected occasions to reveal himself. This is why the Le Nains, with their new

of his

between mythological or historical-religious paintings and the scenes of peasant life painted by the Le Nain brothers; nor is the novelty of the

On

the other hand, the

and probably in dating, between Apollo at Vulcan's Forge, which was painted in Rome in 1630 by Velazquez, and similarity in theme, in composition,

Venus at Vulcan's Forge by Louis and, very probably,

Mathieu Le Nain, may well be

we

significant. In the

and

reading

set

in all

to understand the

more important than

is

the

of values, anticipated the greatest French

artist

of the eighteenth century, Chardin. In Mannerist theory, the historical picture was

conceived as an ordered figure group within a pre-

framework:

disposed

perspective

the second, that of Beauty, visiting the smithy; this

event was

fitted into a universal space,

may be an allusion to the human labor. In any case,

became both a hymn of praise and a monument. Under the influence of the Venetians, particularly of Tintoretto, Annibale Carracci opposed static history with history in movement, a causal chain of events in space and time. Bellori criticizes Caravaggio

fiirst,

see the personification of Poetry,

sense

of praxis, of

ideal value

in the painting of

Velazquez and Le Nain there

new

a

is

both

factor



of social values. Although the subject

two works

allegorical, the

in

are not conceived

is

and

executed as allegories normally are in painting; there

no transposition from the image

is

to the

concept, but a choice of values within the image,

which imbues it

it

with grandeur while not depriving

of character. This also happens without the incen-

Le Nain's paintings

tive of a mythological subject in

of rustic

which have no

life,

humor; on the which is almost

of Flemish

trace

contrary, they have a seriousness religious. If

we

regard history from

humble of this world play as great a part in it as the high and mighty perhaps a greater part, for they are untouched by a religious standpoint, the

worldly pride.

possible that the moral classicism

It is

of Philippe de Champaigne this

may have

profounder feeling for what

sense of the Divine Presence in there

Le Nains "Man :

that he

is

is

is

only miserable

when he

not miserable.

It

(f.

399);

is

the painting of

is

recognizes

therefore to

"Man

is

ruined house

is

(f.

feels it; a

only

action,

development, history reduced to pure

which

without

fact: history

and not universal. Guido Reni attempts to combine the two in his Massacre of the is

particular,

Innocents.

He

does not present the scene according

to a perspective design, but according to a reason

and order which

are internal, a rigorous "structure"

of events. The space

movements of

is

created by the symmetrical

the figures.

To

this

opposition be-

tween the particular and the universal, Rubens found a solution which was to be fundamental to the whole of Baroque art, and in which elements produced by his

Flemish

training

and

Venetian

experience

century for the representation of movement. Space,

when he

miserable"

without

things. Certainly,

miserable ... to be great

recognize that one

history

and history

to this

human,

is

more than

truly great

depicting

particular

converge with the solutions proposed by Leonardo and Michelangelo at the beginning of the sixteenth

contributed to

nothing which seems to anticipate the

is

cardinal thought of Pascal

the

all

for

the

397);

man who

is

miserable"

but his miseries "are the miseries of a

as painted

by Rubens, cannot be considered

in terms

of perspective, but as a refusal to subordinate the painting to any system.

The fragments of movement

which remain, and which we can recognize, seem to be the products of an explosion; everything

is

moving on the surface as if summoned into movement by an irresistible force. This is the theme of universal movement, the cosmic theme of Leonardo.

But this universal movement is created and determined by the movements and gestures of the figures, by their heroic furor; and here we come again to a theme dear to Michelangelo. Space with Rubens is nowhere empty; he fills it with phenomena, each of which is swept up in a rhythm which impresses it forcefully on the spectator. No attempt is made to cause surprise by dispensing with normal methods, and thus to set the imagination working; the aim is to provoke an emotion and to prolong it, to make it last while all the facts and aspects of reaUty (whether they deal with history or not) are

passed in review. Broadly speaking, history

is

no

more than a continuous, increasing emotion, in which reality is regarded as a tumultuous, inexorable movement. When in the second decade of the century Rubens painted the Return of the Prodigal Son, the actual theme of the picture was no more

Or more

precisely:

we have

here two new, opposed

conceptions of history, of space, of things

word, of

The

—in

a

life.

between the universal and the particular, between space and object, between rhetoric and anti-rhetoric, was overcome by Velazquez in the Surrender of Breda (163 4- 1635). Space

antithesis

is

not preconceived, either as structure or

rhythm; the

vertical lines of the lances, the long

trailing horizontal clouds, are sufficient to define

it.

All the values (which cannot be referred back to a

terms of reciprocal

spatial principle) are defined in

relations:

through the contrast of a dark against

a light tone, of a

the

qualitative

warm

against a cold

variation

of two

tint,

through

similar

tones,

through the extension and intensity of a patch of color. Rubens slows down the tempo but speeds

he returns to his father's house. This could not be

up the rhythms, producing a tumultuous or emotive effect which has the violent tension of a spring. Velazquez combines all these individual phenomena in a single phenomenon, a spatial quality in which everything has the same emotive force. The emotion is not transitory but fixed and it has a visual reality which mobilizes the whole consciousness without

achieved without making the visual element, which

referring to secondary meanings.

than a small incident taking place in a rustic scene full

of animals and farm implements.

It

became

almost a model for the Dutch school of animal

But with Rubens the genre motif was exalted by the intense light and the brilliant color, in order to convey the emotion felt by the son when painters.

provokes the

feeling,

more

intense

and

vivid.

;

this conception,

of

Two

methods were available at this point; either a minute description, reducing history to anecdotes, or the identification of visual and conceptual emotions by means of allegory. The Dutch painters (Teniers, Brouwer, Van Ostade, Ter Borch, but not Rembrandt) chose the first, while Rubens chose the second. This difference became more acute in the case of the opposition between Rembrandt and Vermeer. In the first, we have history without

human

not only for

thought,

is this:

art,

no longer suggests

to

but for the history

the image

placed either above or below it

The novelty of

man

human

is

no longer

experience;

the sense of his

own

inferiority before certain objects, or his superiority

before others.

We

no longer think of

a particular

by a universal subject, nor of a universal object seen by a particular subject. Experience takes place, so to speak, on a level with both object and subject, the equality thus established leaving no other margin of possibility. There is no "universal" object seen

protagonists, space without objects; in the second,

apart

protagonists without history, objects without space.

tion,

from this equality (which is a precise not an identity) of subject and object.

distinc-

i

VOUET

VELAZQUEZ

The great

LE NAIN

made

distinction

LA HYRE

LIPPI

FETTI

in the art, as well as in the aesthetic

was between "beauty of nature" and between the beauty of created things, and the

thought, of the seventeenth century,

"beauty of art" beauty

man



that

is,

creates himself. Artistic beauty can be regarded as

a kind

of virtue which helps us to transcend the contingencies of reality and to attain to the universal or eternal. Simon Vouet shows Beauty conquering

Time ;

we

here

survival

and

When

still

have the classical, "monumental" theme of

the victory of

man

human

over time.

the beautiful is judged, not by the creations of nature, but

by those of

human workmanship,

then the handicrafts

connected with them are rehabilitated. Vela^que':(^

Two paintings

and the by

techniques

Le Nain and

show Venus (Beauty) and Apollo (Poetry)

visiting the

forge of Vulcan, as if seeking a means of expression in the techniques

of the craftsman. The Mannerist distinction between theory and praxis no longer holds good; between technical skill and beauty of form there is

no opposition but an intimate connection.

La Hyre plan of a

represents

castle,

Arithmetic as a young woman holding

with constructional calculations in the margin:

speculation thus has a practical application,

by

science. Loren':(0

the

and

technique is conditioned

Lippi paints Music as a young woman composing;

but he places the instruments of her art beside her, because art cannot exist without technique.

Domenico Fetti's picture of Melancholy is also an allegory, but of an opposite type. Everything here refers to the transitoriness and decay of worldly things

human

skull.



Art and wisdom

The beautiful head of

the

cannot conquer the thought of death.

the meditating

the Christian theme of

woman

Mary Magdalen)

( an allegorical allusion to

will one day rese?nble the

now

holds in her hands. If beauty is the product of the

power and

technical skill of fnan, it cannot be eternal; it can

skull which she inventive

the ruined walls, the broken sculptures,

only express his aspirations to eternity, his melancholy at the prospect

of his inevitable fate.

139

140

E. C. 32

LE NAIN. VENUS AT VULCAn's FORGE, 164I. ML'SEE DES BEALX-ARTS, RHEIMS.

E.G.

LORENZO

LIPPI (1606-1665). MUSIC.

33

ANDREA

BUSIRI-VICI COLLECTION, ROME.

4

E.G.

DOMENICO FETTI

(1589-1623).

55

MELANCHOLY, ABOUT

1613. LOUVRE, PARIS.

BORGIANNI

SARACENI

The

seventeenth century

was dominated by

social problems.

Both

Catholic and Protestant, ardently propagated their doctrines ;

religions,

both considered that the "people" must be saved from false prophets.

Their aim was

to proselytise

and conquer

The Catholic

the masses.

upon the power of the governing classes, but knew that nothing could be achieved without popular support. To the Protestant

Church

relied

attack on souls

its

dogma,

it

opposed the simple faith of the humble, whose

would be saved by works of

charity.

Under

the influence of three

seventeenth-century saints, Philip Neri, Francis of Sales,

Borromeo, all of

whom

and not

into art,

labored

among

and Charles

the poor, social problems passed

into devotional pictures alone.

Of

course only the

found in the small genre pictures of anecdotes and glimpses of the daily life and

faintest reflection of this is to be the Bamboccianti ; these

doings of the

little

people are episodes in a

regarded indulgently,

from on

human comedy which was

high, by the rich

This type of painting belongs in fact

to

and great of

the

the world.

Aristotelian category

of Comedy.

The school of Caravaggio regarded the poor in quite another way, as essentially noble, as the elect of God. The weeping Apostles beside Caravaggio' s dead Madonna, in the Death of the Virgin, are men of the people, from the

Rome's popular quarter of Trastevere. The people imploring

Virgin of the Rosary are

onlookers in Saraceni's Miracle

plebeians, as are the fisherman

of St Benno. In

and

this last painting

they have a certain gravity, displaying neither surprise nor joy, as if they

were

ministering

to

some

religious

rite.

Another follower of

Caravaggio, Ora'i^io Borgianni, was not content with glorifying the poverty of Christ's family in conventional terms. In his he depicts St Joseph, the Virgin, St

angel as

men and women of

Anne and

the people.

Holy Family

even the music-making

The humble

cradle, with its

ragged coverlets, introduces an intensely realistic note into the picture

and

alone suffices to characteri'i^e this as

an authentic

scene of lower-

class life.

145

146

ORAZIO BORGIANNI (1578-1616). THE HOLY FAMILY, ABOL'T l6l2. GALLERIA NAZIONALE d'aRTE ANTICA, ROME.

SPACE AND THINGS

The distinction between history painting and genre

of the objects themselves; for example, when the

by the theorists of the seven-

forms a group of similar or related objects (different types of game, even the hunter's firearm,

painting, as postulated

teenth

century,

between an

art

corresponds

calls for

of

it

imitation; but imitation of

is

it is

upon

bag).

The

certain formal affinities

may

depend or colors which prompt

selection

also

the artist to assemble the objects, not in order to

requires only a praxis, a technique.

which in themselves are of secondary importance, and which serve only to create a particular atmosphere. Here the pleasure the viewer feels depends upon extending a particular

In the art of the seventeenth century, the two tendenexisted together; they corresponded broadly

cies

game

or his

we would like it to be, intellect." The imitation

should be, or as

an "exercise of the

reality as

distinction

of the imagination and an art without

imagination. All art reality as

the

to

artist

with different national cultures, but

it

was recognized

between them there was a dialectical relationship, and that only from their interaction could a European that

show

their resemblance, but their variety. Lastly,

there are pictures of objects

to a general interest.

Throughout the seventeenth century, two oppos-

culture emerge.

ing conceptions of reality, universalism and nomina-

Of the simple imitation of a given object, Aristotle, in his Poetics, offers a plausible analysis. Man tends naturally to imitate, because

by imitation he obtains

knowledge. The products of imitation give pleasure,

and

this

depends on the recognition of the object.

Since, however, object,

we

even

we

if

are unfamiliar with the

must depend on the

feel pleasure, this

beauty of the coloring and execution. Clearly in case, the cause

of the pleasure

is

this

the process, the

method, the technique of imitation. Seventeenthcentury painting developed a whole technique of imitation. Its representation

is

butterflies alight,

birds are pecking, food with

Our pleasure is caused by

We may

illusion

flies

crawling over

real,

first

assigned

a primordial value to space, the second to the object.

In painting, figures are used to create space, the

movements of

gestures and

their masses

serving

to suggest spatial recession and perspective.

The

around them is necessarily indeterminate; it is limited to prolonging or repeating indefinitely the plastic-spatial nucleus of the figures. At other times, the figures exist in space, exposed to the incidence of the light and to the changing sursetting

no longer an abstract construction based on perspective, but is composed roundings; in this case, space

is

of concrete objects. The value of the figure defined by a

is

relation to a nearby wall, a distant sky,

its

second figure, the In the same

but convincingly re-

therefore admit that the

mind can have a clear and

it.

contended with each other; the

light, the

shadows.

the fact that these flowers,

grapes and food are not

produced.

— flowers

on bunches of grapes on which

even to the extent of optical

which

precise and minute,

lism,

distinct perception,

human

and that

painting represents the highest form of this faculty.

There are paintings which sometimes are less precise, but which give pleasure because of the way

such

as those

way in

architecture,

we

find buildings,

of Bernini, which realize independently

which dominate the surroundings by reducing them practically to a naturalistic background. They achieve this by the

all

the possibilities of space, and

flexibility

of their plan, the opposition of masses,

empty

which the objects have been chosen and grouped; we appreciate this association and combination, the faculty, that is, whereby the mind is able to associate

the alternation of full and

images according to certain laws of

or con-

space like objects having relationships with concrete

this associative selection

elements (other buildings or particular landscapes).

in

trast.

Pleasure depends

on

affinity

spaces, the contrast

of light and shade. There are other buildings, such as those

of Borromini, which stand in surrounding

In the

first

monumental

type, the

architecture tends

to dominate or subordinate the urban setting. In the second,

it

becomes

a part of

or even helping to create In the

first case,

modifying

it,

And

not only

it,

heightened perception required

if

he

is

them

to turn

works of art. Not only do we see them with his sharper, more practised eye; we are given the

into

this.

benefit of his experience in pictorial creation,

and

the architectural forms constitute

of the continual process of selection on which

it is

it.

We

values relative to a universal space, or components of

based.

a unitary spatial system. In the second, they are

he does, and we view the ordinary happenings of daily fife, momentarily, with exceptional clarity.

as things in themselves,

used

but are connected with the

are granted the privilege of seeing as

whole by a complex web of reciprocal relations. The architecture of Bernini and his school achieves the fight variations offered by the spatial system

imaginary

determining them. Their soaring lines rarely depart

sification

of existence and experience elevates us

from the

from the

particular to the universal; but

particular

which contrives

and curvifinear structure. The architecture of Borromini and his school, up to Guarini and German Rococo, was designed to take full advantage of all possible fight traditional

carving

effects; the

is

rectiUnear

deep-set, with sharp edges,

and with concave, convex and obfique surfaces which throw back the fight from a multitude of finear formations, causing the viewer to be constantly changing his angle of vision; it uses ornament sometimes sparingly, sometimes profusely, so that it can

The

accelerate or retard the flow of fight.

fight

appears to be caught by the architecture, running

along

the

cornices,

bounding from

pilaster

to

pilaster, striking surfaces tilted to reflect it (in the

sacristy of

San Carlo, and on the ceilings of the

Palazzo Falconieri, Borromini

first

used the vaults as

reflecting surfaces), refracted in every direction

ingeniously

designed

exterior

ornaments.

by

This

architecture clearly impfies an empirical conception

of space; but the

artist's real

aim was

to

into an unplanned scheme, to present

of splendid

improvisation

adapted

his

work

as a

form

fit

it

to

ordinary

to

convey

not that of some

world, which the

celestial

in genre painting. This

momentary

to place itself

of the universal. This, perhaps,

is

to a

on the

level

the very certainty

new man,

Guicciardini,

demanded

this empirical experience a space

can clearly

"particular"

from the

On

man of

artist.

also be constructed, a will

inten-

it is

(no longer merely a hope), which the the

wishes

artist

no longer be

experience of

fife

dimension of existence but ;

it

a structure a priori^ so that our

may be

integrated into

it

in a

wiU be a structure which is achieved a posteriori from the fullness of experience, possessing the same diversity that fife possesses. This space will no longer be geometrical there will be no center, no vanishing fines, no horizon; above all, it will no longer be an empty stage awaiting the entry of the actors who are to enact the drama of history. It will be a space whose directions and dimensions are infinite, full of objects, each of which will be at once central and peripheral a space whose structure wiU change as relationships, associations, disciplined

way;

it

;

;

and combinations of objects change.

conditions.

The same can be

It is precisely this lucid vision,

said of genre painting

when

it

The

situation of the individual in society,

his

above the ordinary run of such pictures, for which there was now an ever increasing demand from the middle-class pubfic. The themes are chosen from daily fife: famifiar figures, baskets of fruit,

apparently insignificant but related to aU the other

bouquets of flowers, scenes from popular

points,

rises

life

such

might be seen by simply leaning out of the window. But they are seen by the artist with the

as

physical situation in the capital city, his pofitical

no way different. once central and peripheral,

situation in the state, will be in

He is

a

moving all

point, at

the other individuals, his destiny

to theirs, to that of the universe.

whole

city, to that

bound of the

THE PORTRAIT

The theorists of the seventeenth century considered

painted in his

the portrait as the perfect form of imitation, the

costume, not only because he was fascinated by

mean between historical and genre painting. Annibale

gorgeous fabrics and materials, by glittering breast-

Carracci was,

were taken

it is

true,

straight

an

from

eclectic, life

but his portraits

and are quite unlike

plates

own

social position

which he used imitation in a more selective manner. After all, he had learnt portrait painting from Bassano, the master of naturalism. The Carracci had no intention when they reformed

conventional or

portrait painting of eliminating the "character" or

physiognomy of

aim was to depict his "temperament" (although of course the theory of "temperaments" connected at the time with astrology was out of fashion). Guido Reni went further, transposing the "temperament" into "sentiment." a person; their

The

describe the social scene.

aimed

at

of the

sitter,

ritualistic

showing

his

attached

to

history

considered as the highest form of

art,

part the interest in the portrait which

explains in

we

currents of art in the seventeenth century. trait

painting,

find in all

The por-

but there

in this

is

nothing

rendering.

behaving

He

quite

however elevated their rank. The sitter's attitude and feelings are revealed by deft touches, so that he is first and foremost a human being, and the pomp and ceremony which surround him are depicted for the benefit of others, not for himself. These surroundings are conveyed by the ingenious use of detail. Thus, a plinth or the foot of a column indicates a naturally, giving free play to their feelings,

may mean a public office

few rocks grouped together indicate a landscape. Perhaps Van Dyck's greatest discovery is to retain the human sympathy that he felt for his sitters, a

regardless of their exalted rank or authority.

depicts a protagonist, a hero in an imaginary

story.

But

even

often in the form of oratorical praise or polite

if

this is

not

all. It

compliment. The portrait

also contains a judgment,

tells

us that social relations

between individuals presuppose a judgment in terms of values. We all wish to know what this is, but above all to know how others, the world in general, see

clothes describe the

subjects

palace ; the corner of a table

The importance

concentrated on the

and necklaces, but because he wished to

the historical, religious or mythological compositions in

He

way.

it.

In this sense, the artist

a referee,

valued.

and

is

an interpreter and

his opinions are canvassed

The seventeenth-century portrait

and highly was closely

connected with the society in which its subject lived;

seldom had any historical importance, and was concerned almost exclusively with revealing the sitter's attitude towards society. It made no attempt at celebrating or commemorating, but rather at showing the individual as he is, or as he would like

it

Frans Hals did the same, except that he dealt exclusively with middle-class society, and he

none of the snobbism of the "cavalier" painter. The sympathy with the subjects, which is always perceptible in Van Dyck, becomes familiarity in Frans Hals, with something coarse, occasionally even clownish about it. He came from the same social class as his models and treated them as equals. He knew them so well that he hardly needed to describe them; a touch was sufficient, the blink of the eye, a flush in the cheek, a glint in the hair.

He

treated

would when calling him by a nickname. His method is not impressionistic; it relies on an abridgment, or summary, of character. his sitter as a friend

Unlike Velazquez, he used color

others to see him.

less for its

purely

visual effect than for reproducing the gaiety

Van Dyck

inaugurated the era of the

official

was influenced by the Venetians, being nearer to Veronese than to Titian, but he always portrait. He.

had

boisterousness of his

he emphasizes the

sitters.

and

With rapid brushstrokes

salient detail: the

uncouth beard,

the wrinkles around the eyes, the creases in the

clothes.

He

invented a form of caricature based on

color rather than physiognomy.

While the features may describe and interpret a man's character, it is the color which gives him life and gaiety. Frans Hals' portraiture is pitiless it shows a fool as a fool, a clown as a clown. He took society as he found it,

hands. Again in the portrait of the nuns of Port Royal,

it

did not exceed the limits of bourgeois

respectability.

In contrast to this superficial kind of portrait, are the deeply pondered portraits of Rembrandt. While

Frans Hals painted gay and boisterous groups

—even

are conscious of the divinity as an addi-

tional element.

Velazquez alone, starting from the point where

;

provided

we

Rubens left off, felt the importance of a direct, man-to-man dialogue with his sitter, and it was a matter of indifference to him whether his interlocutor was a king on horseback or a deformed madman, as

The

in Tbe Child of Vallecas or The Idiot of Coria.

primary condition is to renounce the act of judgment,

Rembrandt was the painter of the lonely man. Even

which implies always the recognition of our superiority or our inferiority compared with others. Only in this way does the "phenomenon" appear no longer as a detail of a whole or a symbol of a

when he

whole, but as a fully achieved reality giving

he occasionally concentrates more on one person than the others by focusing all the light on him

if

paints a group, each individual seems to

itself

come

in its entirety without referring to anything else.

from the depths of space and time, and they stop on the threshold of the present. Every moment of experience seems to have left its mark on them, or destroyed something in them. Experience, Rembrandt seems to say, does not enrich life;

The Portrait of Paplillos de Valladolid (which inspired Le Fifre of Manet) is a great somber profile against

portrait of a

human being

human

decay. Under-

one of absolute parity. Space here, in fact, is not all the space, nor simply a part for the whole it is exactly the space of the image itself, the condition which allows its manifestation as an absolute reality. In other words, Velazquez did not seize reality in the phenomenon, but the reality of the phenomenon. Because consciousness cannot be separated from its

possess a personal secret history. His figures

from

afar,

it

disintegrates

is

no more than

standably

it.

The

the story of

people

old

therefore

are

among

his

even when he painted the face of his young son Titus, he made it seem old. His characters have long left the world of men they are favorite subjects;

;

and tend to be alike. Nor can the painter avoid identifying them with himself and his own unhappy life. He tells us that every human story, however individual it may appear, is really the same and he always paints his own portrait. Yet he was more aware of society than Frans Hals was. His problem was to dissolve the individual in society, yet at the same time making the individual representative of that society. This was the dilemma as old as Biblical patriarchs,

;

of

seventeenth-century

Champaigne depicted

it

Jansenist painter, there

God. In the famous

Philippe

de

same way; but for

this

portraiture.

in the

was

a third element, that of

portrait of Richelieu, the Cardi-

men, that the responsibility of the purple which weighs on his fragile shoulders is heavy and out of character with the deep sensitivity of his features and nervous nal seems to be saying to

God,

as well as to

a pearl-gray

background, in which only the cast

shadow suggests doubtless a

but

There is relationship between figure and space, a certain spatial recession.

it is

object or content, reaUty

is

phenomenon impinges on the will to paint the

comes

phenomenon, but

into play, for

as a part

the

Infanta

—PhiUp

Margarita,

moment when

can shape

of the consciousness,

phenomenon

this

IV, the or

it

the

Here

the consciousness.

not of the outer world. If certain person

the

Duke

the

Idiot

is

a

of Olivares,

of Coria

the painter does not identify himself with the person,

own if we

but paints them as the objective contents of his consciousness.

transpose

it

This

is

an attitude which,

to the social plane, anticipates the

first

French philosophers of the Enlightenment, and the future definition of the individual in society. This a completely free condition (neither conformist rebel), in a society

a

group of persons

which all

is

is

nor

not an abstraction, but

equally free.

6 THE PORTRAIT According to the imitation in

its

theorists, the portrait

purest form, the faithful and objective

reproduction of a given

atical

fact. It is in this field,

we become aware of

fore, that

nature

of imitation.

The answer of

possible?

was

portraitists

should be

that

it is

there-

the highly problem-

Is

absolute

imitation

the seventeenth-century

not.

Mancini

criticized the

realism of Caravaggio, but recognized that direct

and exact imitation may reproduce aspect,

but

not

the

universal

a

particular

value,

of truth.

Caravaggio's creations are too true to be natural.

But

if the

depiction

is

to be a

compendium of many,

infinite aspects, the artist for his part carries

out

a process of carefully chosen analysis and, in the last resort,

produce

of synthesis. This process clearly does not

identity,

but resemblance, which consists

in rendering the character of the individual. This

naturally implies a

judgment

or, at least, a diagnosis.

Since therefore the character of the sitter appears in visible

form,

the

explanation

interest in portraiture

everyone

is

was

of the

mounting

that, in the social

world,

depicted as they really appear.

Domenichino, for example, attempted in a selfportrait to depict meditation and sensibility, the two dominant aspects as the painting shows of his character. His eyes have an intent, thoughtful



expression; the features are sharp, the lineaments subtly, nervously

drawn; the modeling

is

delicate.

6 THE PORTRAIT According to the imitation in

its

theorists, the portrait

purest form, the faithful and objective

reproduction of a given fore, that

fact. It is in this field,

we become aware

nature

atical

was

portraitists

that

it is

there-

of the highly problem-

of imitation.

The answer of

possible?

should be

Is

imitation

absolute

the seventeenth-century

not.

Mancini

criticized the

realism of Caravaggio, but recognized that direct

and exact imitation may reproduce a particular aspect,

but

not

the

universal

value,

of truth.

Caravaggio's creations are too true to be natural.

But

if

the depiction

is

to be a

compendium of many,

infinite aspects, the artist for his part carries

out

a process of carefully chosen analysis and, in the last resort,

produce

of synthesis. This process clearly does not

identity,

but resemblance, which consists

in rendering the character of the individual. This

naturally implies a

judgment

or, at least, a diagnosis.

Since therefore the character of the sitter appears in visible

form,

the

explanation

interest in portraiture

everyone

is

was

of the

mounting

that, in the social

world,

depicted as they really appear.

Domenichino, for example, attempted in a selfportrait to depict meditation and sensibility, the two dominant aspects as the painting shows



of his character. His eyes have an intent, thoughtful expression; the features are sharp, the lineaments subtly, nervously

drawn; the modeling

is

delicate.

best revealed in the temples, the cheekbones, and

the lips; the skin

transparent,

is fine,

and

soft; the

hands are tenuous but well jointed. All

this

is

revealed thanks to his sensibility, and his technical

The painter has succeeded in viewing he might be seen by someone else, Poussin,

use of the light.

himself as

on the other hand, seeks order of his

own

in his

own

face the severe

accompanied by he alludes to this

classical vision,

a subtly melancholic sensibility;

ideal order of things, perhaps not intentionally, in

the geometry of the parallel planes of the paintings

hung on

the wall behind the figure.

One cannot deny postures are typical

and conventional of contemporary portraiture;

that "types"

form of full-length figures standing or seated, and half-busts seen from in front or from a threein the

quarter angle.

It is

the postures that are

more

likely

to yield the true character than the combination of

aspects

particular

three-quarter

(the

pose,

for

example, combines the front and profile view).

Only the

greatest artists can avoid this conventional

approach, and then not always. is

that, in the portrait, pictorial

What

is

essential

technique can be

described as one of analysis, of research, or interpretation

—even

when

methods.

habitual

It

follows

it

is

the

traditional

counterpart

or

of the

technique of imagination in allegorical composition.

In his portrait of his wife, Salvator Rosa adheres closely to

one posture with

a

conventional chiaro-

scuro foundation; but he elaborates

the

chiaro-

scuro with a more precise highlighting which in this face,

of a "classical beauty," reveals the character

in the sensual quivering

of the nostrils and the

lips,

in the bright tones of the flesh standing out against

background of the canvas. A Dutch master. Van der Heist, did the same thing to high-

the black

light the character of the face, using perspective

view the position of the arm, the transversal planes of the back of the chair and the canvas on to

the easel. In the face of Costanza Buonarelli, Bernini

saw character

less in the rather

ordinary features

than in the softly glowing cheeks and parted

lips,

DOMENICHINO: SELF-PORTRAIT, ABOUT 162O. UFFIZI, FLORENCE.

SALVATOR ROSA: PORTRAIT OF HIS WIFE LUCREZIA, ABOUT 1650. GALLERIA NA2IONALE d'aRTE ANTICA, ROME.

NICOLAS POUSSIN: SELF-PORTRAIT, 165O. LOUVRE, PARIS.

156

157

The

in the almost radiant luminosity of the flesh.

modeling which seems to lift up the forms and increase the luminous effect, extends the image into space, surrounding it with an aura of light. sensitive

The

intention

of stamping

the

presenting the subject not for what

in

it is

why

for us and for the world, explains

of

character, itself,

but

the figure

frequently reinserted in a social context, into

is

its

and not fortuitous, social context. From the double portrait or the group portrait, as in Frans Snyders and his Wife by Van Dyck, we pass to the true,

dialogue portrait, as in the Two

Nuns

of Port Royal

by Philippe de Champaigne, in which the austere and subtle harmony of whites and grays, with a few notes of intense color,

is far

physical description of the

group

more eloquent than sitters.

In Holland the

portrait, generally representing the

members of

the

a social club or a council,

assembled

was

trans-

formed in the work of the greatest artists into what we might call the portrait of situation; at the center of interest were not the single figures, nor the action in which they were partaking together, but the fact that they existed together in a definite place and at a definite moment, in a situation in which they were participating, and which arose precisely frdm their common presence and relationship; this is the case with the group portraits by Rembrandt and Frans Hals, especially in works like the Anatomy Lesson of Doctor Tulp, the Night Watch, and the Regents. On this level, the portrait as an image of a situation (naturally

a

historical picture as

ence

is

that

one)

social

in

takes

the

an image of an

the

historical

place

action.

action,

The

of the differ-

there

is

a

hierarchy of protagonists and secondary figures,

while the image of a situation

is

determined simply

by the presence together of a number of people bound by social ties. In this way historical space and time disappear from the painting; the space and time of a given situation, which take their place, are no other than the space and time of ordinary life the space and time on which the vision of



modern painting

is

founded.

/

j

I J

E.

SIR

ANTHONY VAN DYCK

C

38

(1599-1641). PORTRAIT OF

CHARLES

I,

ABOUT 1635. LOUVRE,

PARIS.

ZURBARAN

CHAMPAIGNE

VAN DYCK

A portrait by

Anthony van Dyck

but of a personality, a social figure.

not a portrait of a person,

is

He

was portrait painter

to the

English court and aristocracy during the i6^o's, and he believed that social

rank corresponded with an intimate spiritual

homage

to

quality.

He

paid

worldly prestige, butjustified his notion of natural superiority

as due, in equal measure, to illustrious origin, good breeding, and a kind

of interior vocation. In the Portrait of Charles I of England^ he sparing of all ceremonial ; here the king

gentleman and his manner, if proud,

is

is

is

revealed simply as a sporting

Van Dyck

naturally elegant.

neither describes nor praises the virtues of the sovereign ; he is content to

and

display his subject's manifest superiority,

suggest, lies in recogni':(e

this,

he seems to

an indefinable quality of mind, an innate capacity

and appreciate

the worth of things,

fust at

this time

of high moral idealism was being superseded by one of

men responded more

ardently to

life

and lived more

world, whether in that of society or nature.

in

an age

sensibility,

when

harmony with

Van Dyck

also

to

the

shows the

king's page and groom, and he bends the foliage of a tree to form a kind

of pavilion over the royal head. The silvery gray of the sky provides a

luminous background for the brilliant reflections of the

For Van Dyck,

the sitter is

is to define the sitter's

materials.

an "elect" nature, and the artist's task

personality through his elective

Philippe de Champaigne undoubtedly had

less

affinities.

worldly aims in his

Portrait of Cardinal Richelieu^ where he shows himself to be aware

of the antithesis, or at least the internal tension, between the opposing

and

values of authority

conceal the insignia reflections

face,

and

sensibility.

Unlike

Van Dyck,

he does not

of power ; the whole painting shines with the

and glow of

the

Cardinal's cloak.

the slender, nervous hands,

In the thin, tapering

we are made aware of

the appre-

hensions of a sensitive nature, almost of his anxiety at being invested

with such authority.

The Portrait of Father Jeronimo Perez by Francisco Zurbaran is

another example. Here, too, almost the entire painting

the heavy

162

mass of

is filled

the white tunic, which is contrasted with the

with

dark

REMBRANDT

ZURBARAN

VELAZQUEZ

ALGARDI

HALS

shadows on the unshaven face, the deep folds of the cloak, the hands and the book.

More

than a portrait of a person, this

a symbol of monastic

dress,

rule.

Framed

in

figure stands out against the background in

The expression

in the uncommunicative face,

dim

a harsh moral imperative excluding

surroundings, the

a crude, glaring

dark against

Here

cloak, reveals a blind, intransigent, pitiless faith. seen as

the portrait of a

is

light.

the white

authority is

sensibility or sentiment.

Intended to convey the edifying example of a saintly

life, this

portrait,

a new type of devotional image.

in its stark simplicity, establishes

However, the types of social interest which made a seventeenthcentury portrait a means of education, more than a social document, were

Only

infinite.

the

past existed for Rembrandt ;

written in the faces of his sitters.

For Frans Hals,

its

only the

signs are

momentary

was important, a sudden smile of mutual understanding, the wink of an eye. Clothes, as a second and more definite index of the person, are used more to describe the character than the social rank. encounter

In Algardi's bust of

Donna Olimpia

Maidalchini, the hood blown out

behind the head expresses her overbearing temper better than the expression on the face does.

The portrait may operate

in terms of praise, biography, or dialogue ;

but the necessity for psychological interpretation can be a limiting factor.

Rembrandt always overcomes

the sitter ; his

model

Vela':as not

reality which,

meaning of creation world, nor

is

man. Man,

to

can reveal the underlying

scrutini-:(ed,

in their view, is not the center of the

But

he even a privileged creature.

and

structure,

when

its

aspects are infinite

and

because nature has no

ever-changing, it provides in-

numerable opportunities for incident and emotion, and for sympathetic contacts with reality. This explains

why

every

Dutch landscape painter

has his individual viewpoint and his favorite themes



the seascape, the

woodland glade, the open fields, the suburb ; and every season has

its

own

many kinds of landscape each painter became own following among the public. We may ascribe

character. In one of these

a

with his

specialist,

this

immense production

limitations of

to the

life in its

own

demands of an urban public, aware of the

city,

which wished

to decorate the walls

Even

private houses with landscape paintings, revealing wider horiq^ons. if

some of

the great

an emotional

Dutch

quality,

landscapists, such as Ruisdael, introduce

they have no

real "feeling for nature"

have, rather, a lively interest in natural objects tilled fields.

Their concern was not

of space, but rather

new

things

paintings itself

This

is

different

generally friendly

human

why

it

to define



life

they

or lay bare the construction

way of life. Nature

and

;

trees, clouds, canals,

broaden the horizon of everyday

and surest a

with is

to

of

in

life, to

discover

Dutch landscape

hospitable, always ready to identify

and experience



in

a word, "social" nature.

helped to form, in the eighteenth century, the aesthetic

of the picturesque^ just as the aesthetic of the sublime was born

of Salvator Rosa's vision of a capricious,

Rembrandt's

vision of landscape,

and

hostile,

threatening nature.

his images of space illuminated

by whirlpools of light which distort the objects, transcends the limits of the genre.

The same can be said for Vermeer's incomparable

View of

Delft^ which leaves the domain of sensory empiricism for metaphysical meditation, thereby anticipating that identity of thought sation which

was much

and

visual sen-

later to be the object of Ce:(anne's pictorial

researches.

187

ADAM ELSHEIMER

(1578-1610).

THE FLIGHT INTO EGYPT,

1609.

E. C. 49

BAYERISCHE STAATSGEMALDESAMMLUNGEN, MUNICH.

PETER PAUL RUBENS (1577-1640). LANDSCAPE WITH PHILEMON AND BAUCIS, ABOUT 162O. KUNSTHISTORISCHES MUSEUM, VIENNA.

GENRE PAINTING

Cjenre

painting

of Flemish origin. Stemming

is

from the bitter quietism of Bruegel the Elder, it assumed the character of an ironic distortion of history.

up as

The genre

follows. History

names

great

its

painter's attitude is

a tale of murder and plunder

are those of scoundrels

it

who

talk

it

richness,

anecdotes, proverbs, witticisms. Far from

life,

being inferior to history, the comic

adages can



with

is

all its salty

truer; all the

philosophers cannot explain the

the life

the

as

just

deserve to be recorded any more than the daily

life

is

free to take his subjects

of the popular and rustic

class

"picturesque" aspects of social

of a peasant.

particular,

Genre painting

is

rather the product of skepticism

than of any concern with social questions. Neither

Brouwer, nor even Jan Steen had any

Teniers,

painter

the art of a class, of the bourgeoisie (not of course

In opposition

tragic.

comedy of everyday

mysteries of

The

deeds of kings do not

is

reveals the

wisdom of

ideal.

any better than one of these popular

it

stands the comic, infinitely preferable, for

its

chosen

where he likes, to show things as they are, to compromise with the ugly and sordid. The technique of this type of painting is rapid and precise, summary and descriptive, graphic and slovenly. It is free from all literary prejudice or precept, from the heavy obligations of ut pictura poesis. For this reason, and also because of its subject matter, it soon became

hypocritically of ideals;

to

may be summed

form of mimesis, of imitation, is no more than a technique; and in genre painting, which takes as its theme the commonplace aspects of everyday life, technique does not have to deal with the problem of the beautiful, it does not have to conform to a

depicted).

it

life,

of low

The

life

in

were thus recognized before those of

nature; and, as the art of a class, genre painting

between urban and country life.

reveals the ever increasing differences

and

rural society,

between

city life

particular affection for the people they painted. In so

wished to demonstrate anything, it of the people is entirely devoid of

far as they

is

the

ideals,

life

based exclusively on habit and hazard.

We may

The

that

well

school of the "Bamboccianti" or low

painters in

Rome, which was grouped around

van Laer, was not

ask therefore

why

they painted scenes and events

times supposed.

which, on

showing, were hardly worth painting.

history painting,

this

as important socially as

It

and

dence of the times It

was no accident

that genre painting

simultaneously with, but in opposition

developed to,

of the "Romanists" and the "Italianizers"

Northern

painters, generally

the art (i.e.

the

Dutch or Flemish, who

started



as

a

is

life

Pieter

some-

reaction against

main theme was the decathe decadence which had reits

duced the great monuments of Rome to sorry ruins populated only by the rabble of "porters and urchins and pickpockets" (Salvator Rosa). When Cerquozzi painted the revolt of Masaniello in Naples, he saw

and seventeenth centuries adopted a style based on classical Italian models). Genre painting took its rise as an art of popular appeal, as opposed to the more refined and genteel style of the Romanists and Italianizers. It may be claimed that this painting of "low life" can give no other pleasure but that derived from an accurate and convincing imitation; and Aristotle in his Poetics relegates the

no more than another episode of plebeian life; he had no intention of pleading for the poor. Their condition had worsened with the rise of the new middle-class urban society, but he showed no recognition that there was any such thing as a "problem

imitation of such subjects to a very inferior position

representing

in the sixteenth

in his artistic hierarchy (although

he did not exclude

it

from

we

it

as

of the poor."

When

Caravaggio painted the

Madonna

his

Death of the Virgin,

as

a

"bloated

female

m.ay note that

corpse" surrounded by the motionless and horrified

Now

Apostles, he appeared to regard poverty as a moral

his system).

this

rather than a social problem.

He shows

Virgin of the Rosary^ in

attitude in his

same which the the

humble crowd around her hold up their hands imploringly; and again in his Seven Works of Mercy, reminiscent in selfless ideals

fervid animation, of the

silent,

its

of St Philip Neri. Saraceni was deeply

concerned with poverty when he depicted the pious

are interested

among

the

awareness of

it

his

in his St Laivrence distributing the

We feel

Goods of the Church.

painter as Gentileschi into

showed

Serodine

Plague-stricken.

it,

who,

too, in such a sensitive

in his Rest on the Flight

Egypt, breaks with the iconographic tradition in

depicting St Joseph, by denying

him

all

nobility

and

plunging him into the swinish slumber of a peasant (thus excluding

him from

the mystic aura surround-

ing the Virgin and Child). But in

of Caravaggio social criticism

is

all

these followers

implicit; there

a

is

The topsy-turvy world of fiction;

born

in Holland, did not last

In the ascendant

now was

by the Dutch and Flemish

who

sponsored the

painful experience,

long in

Italy.

the school represented disciples

of Caravaggio,

new conception of history as the story of human misery

a



conception which culminated in Rembrandt.

is

themselves against the arrogance of

their superiors,

The brutalized peasants who drink, play, and make love in rustic kitchens are types rather than characters. They are the incarnation of the aristocracy.

various forms of ugliness (and these types, thin,

grotesque or repulsive, are a

Bruegel's types).

They

live

last

fat

or

echo of

always in the same dank,

smoky, gloomy hovels, where every gleam of color is

blotted out. It

is

easy to contrast these popular

scenes with those of bourgeois society, which are

undoubtedly truer to

life.

If the great

of

this

world

is

Entertainment

"Don't be

his

a

is

like these

own world and way

of life,

the bourgeois takes a very different attitude ; he does

not praise or glorify himself but

even

critical,

reveals

the

with one of popular

life

similarities

definition of space

good-naturedly

The comparison of

ironical.

of middle-class

is

and the

a scene

life at

once

differences.

The

the same: the picture space

is

is

divided up by means of doors, walls, pieces of

On

furniture.

But there

one

rough, rickety floorboards, broken-down

side,

is

chairs, dirty tables;

wardrobes

floors,

a class differentiation.

on the

full

the

other, shining parquet

of well-pressed linen,

fine

and furniture. The faces are different too. the one hand, the expressions are blurred and

indeterminate, like the muzzles of so

many

animals;

on

clear

and each

the other, the characterization

figure

is

is

perfectly recognizable. In the peasant scenes

there are one or

two stock

drunkard

situations: a

slopping wine over his clothes, a child whining, a

woman embraced by

bourgeois visit

life

there

is

a drunkard. In the scenes of a wealth of small detail: the

of the doctor, the reading of a

received, a meal, a music lesson, a

no reason to suppose that the "low life" depicted by the Dutch and Flemish genre painters, from Teniers to Van Ostade and Brouwer, is more truly seen than high official society as painted by Le Brun. In them the village is opposed to the city, the tavern to the town house. The bourgeoisie wished to show how superior they were to the working class; it was their only way of asserting There

life.

a warning:

it

But with respect to

On

a genre

documents.

people!"

which poverty seems to be endemic. We see it too in Caravaggio's David, and in his cruel Beheading of fohn the Baptist; and in Artemisia Gentileschi's painting of popular scenes,

can say

a satire of bourgeois society rather than

given, but with

carpets

The

it is

its

we

drunken peasant

the

a true picture of lower-class

desire for revenge against the cruelty of history, in

Judith and Holofernes.

in history, then

all

that the bourgeoisie are interested in

astonishment of the spectators in his Miracle of St Benno. So was Borgianni, with his praise of poverty in the Holy Family, or in St Charles Borromeo

above

letter

game of

just

chess.

There are anecdotes which, as they unfold, reveal a plot and develop almost like short stories Hogarth the classical example in eighteenth-century is England. ;

In these in

little

scenes irony

an unexpected

light, to

in a significant detail.

localize the action

An

used to reveal things

mirror a whole situation

The

well-defined compartments

is

division of space into is

and mark

necessary in order to its

successive phases.

ingenious use of perspective enables the painter

on

which help him to understand or follow the development of the story. Color has everywhere the same function, to focus the spectator's eye

certain objects

being heightened or softened according to the it is

effect

intended to make. Local color, as the actual color

of the object,

is

of capital importance. Space

up by means of

is

built

interrelated objects, in a clearly

defined situation, not by abstract perspective. In

order to reconstitute a spatial unit from

all

these

and notations, the eye must follow the thread of the story or episode, and grasp the situation as

adjustment, they

a whole. This ability to grasp a given situation

in

details

something by which the bourgeoisie

is

set great store.

situation in terms of the universal.

They did not

abandon local color in favor of general tonality, as Rembrandt did. By means of judicious selection and

of

local color the vehicle

which had universal value, and they succeeded obtaining the same light intensity from all the

a light

colors in the picture. All the quantitative values of color, that

But there is an evaluation of a practical situation which does not go beyond the determination of a line of conduct suiting the given situation. And there is an evaluation which is wider and deeper in scope, and which, in a given situation, recognizes its human implications and their bearing on life. The world is made up of details, and it is useless to imagine that one can conceive of a universal reality but thought is universal, in so far as it can see details in their universal relations. Pieter de Hooch, and even more Vermeer, painted the limited extent of a room but in doing so represented a universal space that is, they represented an action or a particular

made

is

to say, are fused together in a union

among them-

of quahties which, though differing

selves, are yet identical as absolute qualities or values.

Even

metrical relationships, the extension of planes

or the duration of tone values, contribute to this qualitative fusion of colors, for

it

may happen

to obtain identical qualities of yellow

example, the painter

is

that

and blue, for

obliged to give the

first

a

greater extension or a longer duration of perception.

The same

is

true of all the objects that

space and go to define

though they

the picture

in so far as they stand

it,

the same qualitative level. that,

fill

And

it is

on

for this reason

retain nothing of classical design,

Vermeer's forms have qualities of design, proportion

and harmony

that not only

synthesis of the Flemish

place

it

at the zenith

make

and

his

work

a genuine

Italian traditions,

but

of seventeenth-century painting.

and the thought concrete; in a the case.

is

still

We

the contrary

naturally interest a society of burgher merchants

why

accustomed to considering the value of merchandise, recognizing by sight and touch the quality of a

can therefore understand

may be

life

still life

the

regarded as the favorite type of

painting in a middle-class society.

The thing

itself

material, of a crystal table service, of an

The seventeenth-century

embossed

becomes no longer an object, but an occasion for thought; it has no inherent meaning, and no value other than the thoughts it stimulates through

always, a song of praise to these "consumer goods"

mental associations. This kind of relationship

disposed as in a

be found at different allude to the life,

good

levels; a well-laid table

same person, according to

may

his

mood

at

The

any given

same things different them as it were his changing

attribute to the

meanings, reflecting in states

to

things of this world, to an easy

or to the comfort and intimacy of a home.

moment, may

is

of mind. In

fact, at

the very

moment when

the

metal?

still

life is,

almost

cut-glass, silverware, furs, textiles, foodstuffs, flowers

shop-window, and

fish and meat arranged as on the fishmonger's or butcher's slabs. We might almost claim that, as a result of its remote and soon forgotten religious and allegorical florist's

implications, the seventeenth-century in

still life

ushered

the epoch of the "fetishism of merchandise."

This explanatory or assessing attitude was typical

new

of the

class

;

for the

still life

played the same role

eye perceives these objects, the mind transcends

in the solid middle-class society of the time as the

them, for their interest

historical or allegorical painting

too slight to hold the

is

Things remain where they are, even if we are not there. They await another mind, another cycle of mental associations, and are ever ready to attention.

offer

new

opportunities for the thought processes of

what Locke

called "the active

But painting

mind."

image of things, not the things themselves; and this alters our relationship with them. Real things become useful or pleasant as soon

offers the

as they represent

become

something, as soon as they

vehicles for ideas;

imitative

skill

of the

collection of things

and

depends on the

The

artist.

may be

this

infinite,

inventory,

the

but the process

of transforming them into representations of things is

practically the same.

on

The

and bathed

objects are always placed

same kind of light (natural light, or the light of reason, which becomes an abstract condition and cannot be reduced to a table

special

in the

circumstances: studio light).

The method

of grouping the objects can be reduced to a few typical categories;

and certain constant themes are

more

The

still life

things.

The

typically middle-class

century, that of the

still

qualities

life

Dutch

which the

of the seventeenth

still life

are generally seen

close they

is

nothing

may appear

to

of the visible space. The

attenuated,

window

light,

comes from in front; very was almost the rule in Dutch still lifes), generally

outside the picture, behind the viewer,

reflected in a transparent or shiny object.

is

The viewer

therefore included in the picture space,

some

though

and can

extent re-experience the creative process

whereby the

artist

has changed objects into repre-

sentations of objects, or changed the specific quality

of objects into the values of

human

experience.

school, attempted to

and bring home to our consciousness: the rough surface and the smooth, the velvety and the diaphanous, the fragile and the brilliant. Are not these the qualities which would

isolate in their stark reality

objects in a

at the limits

to

These perhaps are the very

as

the viewer, even at arm's length, they always stand

the shimmering scales of fish, the soft fur of game, etc.

no longer regarded space

beyond them. However

is

of crystal glass,

new conception of

against a uniform background, and there

of a crust of bread, the velvety texture of peaches, fragility

a

emanated from the actual experience of things, and which could be extended as far as experience would allow; a space which was not determined by the endless possibilities of the imagination, for no idea exists which does not have some relationship with

a

and

it

homogeneous or part of a system. The still life thus came to represent an essential element in the contemporary perception of space. It was a space which did not proceed from authority to experience, and which no longer imposed on man the vast scale of otherworldly dimensions. It was a space which

lemon). In the same way, there are certain practical

the transparency

brought with

space, because people

often (this

rough surface

in the earlier,

elegant society of the "great."

established (the cup, the carafe of wine, the peeled

rules for obtaining given effects; the

had

The

strict rules

prevent the

artist

of

this

type of painting did not

from expressing

for the experience of the artist individual. It

is

is

his personality;

always unique and

clear that not only the "speciality"

Ruoppolo from a Baschenis; in France, a Baugin from a Linard; in Holland, a Van der Ast from a Claesz, a Metsu from a Kalf, a Heda, a Snyders or a Huysum,

at a particular object,

In the process of transforming the object into a

experience can be justified as a search for truth.

but also the

style distinguishes, in Italy, a

these, closely analyzed, will

to the artist's intention.

come

and be found to correspond

picture, the artist's feelings

And

into play;

because this intention

communicated to the spectator, it determines the choice and recognition of the values. Since, from this empirical point of view, there are no values which do not presuppose perception (and the perception of an artist is necessarily more precise and acute, for it is bound up with the imitative and is

operative processes of

art),

we may

say that the

intention of the artist conditions the perception of things, according to an order of values

attempts to impose or affirm. Intention

which he is

feeling,

and instead to proceed from

the object in order to find universal space, signifies the renunciation of authority in favor of experience

and

if

authority can be justified as a priori truth,

true that,

proceeding from things,

space ; but the process

is

different,

of the conception of space Schematically, as

we have

in separating the object

at

from

natural context,

its

and investigating the new context of relations which it can disclose to us. In the eighteenth century, Hogarth, the painter considering

it

as a

notion in

itself,

of empiricism, said that the painter should place himself within the object, as in a shell; this would, in fact,

be the only possible way of evaluating the

relationship of associations

and combinations within

the object itself Normally, then, the object

which stimulates the artistic activity of the painter and causes him to represent objects in

objects in the

This imitative process presupposes a

positive reaction,

which may be caused

in

one of

several ways, thus giving rise to widely different

same object. But it also presupposes a certain sympathy or interest on the artist's part, justified perhaps by the fact that he is interpretations

of the

completely free to interpret the subject in his

own

still life,

who

painted

still

lifes

original

was never an emotion or a

sensation, but always the object it

artists

in the seventeenth century,

their point of departure

saw

were the

itself.

They never

as a patch of light or color, but as a glass, a

which is valuable because it creates a language which does not use notions, but is formed from them. To refuse to proceed from universal space in order to arrive

plate, a fruit, a flower. It

is

therefore the object

would be

The choice of in the Dutch still

was not fortuitous; here we find, at least alluded to, the room and the surroundings, the table, the objects grouped according to certain criteria of affinity. More precisely, we find objects which are of practical use to us, and things or instruments which life,

help us to use the objects.

Space

is

not merely

defined by the presence and consistency of objects,

but by their qualitative and functional

"collection of ideas."

we

affinities.

social setting,

of

and we are bound to them by relationships of sympathy, almost of collaboration. Just as the portrait expresses our relationship with other men, or the landscape our relationship with nature, or interiors and genre scenes our relationship with home or family life, or the view of a city our relationship with an urban landscape, so the still life expresses our relationship with things, thereby completing modern man's

the society in which

However independent or

particularly

These objects, too, are part of our

way, unconstrained by authority.

at

seen, the process consists

placed in a clearly social context.

pictorial form.

arrive

and so is the value which we arrive.

because an objective situation exists (objects on a table)

we

It is

live,

CARAVAGGIO

206

(1573-1610). BASKET OF FRUIT,

ABOUT I595. PINACOTECA AMBROSIANA, MILAN.

CARAVAGGIO

2URBARAN

BAUGIN

VELVET BRUEGEL

Caravaggio' s Basket of Fruit, which was painted in the last years

of the sixteenth century,

is

the prototype of the seventeenth-century

Seen from below, the object stands out clearly against a white

still life.

wall and, in this restricted space, everything takes on a vividness which

makes

it,

one might almost say, more real than the real.

The

achieved by obliterating the "natural" relationship between

space; the basket exists in

man. It

its

The problem of

it is

man and

space, which is impenetrable to

not absolute, because there

is

basket as a thing in itself ; but else.

own

effect is

is

no attempt to present the

unrelated to man, it

is

something

the existence of something else raises, in deeper,

more tragic form, the problem of our existence. For Zurbaran as well asfor Baugin, the presence of things, their emergence in the foreground of reality, implies the absence of human beings ; this religious, even eschatological, intent

behind

is the fundamentally

many of

the still lifes of

the seventeenth century.

But

was not

this

the only motive.

Paying

close attention to detail,

Velvet Bruegel painted a bouquet of wild flowers in which he revealed the

infinite

variety of natural forms,

the innumerable

types of the

"beautiful" which classical theory had reduced to an abstract canon of proportions.

To

to Aristotle, to

class society,

enjoy the intellectual pleasure of imitation

gain a deeper insight into

reality.

is,

according

Doubtless middle-

having repudiated the great ideals of the past, had a

positive interest in the detailed knowledge of things.

But by commissioning

paintings of objects which were a part of their daily

life to

adorn their

homes, the bourgeoisie admitted that the artist had a clearer vision

than they had. The specialists in

example, do not attempt

to give

still life

painting, like

Kalf for

familiar things an eternal or tran-

scendental value, but rather to teach us to see them well, to understand their real value, beyond their immediate, practical utility. still life painters,

The Dutch

by helping middle-class society to view objects as

they really are, gave them a

new

set of values.

IQ-J

208

LUBIN BAUGIN

(c.

1612-1663). STILL LIFE

WITH WAFERS. LOUVRE,

PARIS.

E. C. 62

1

JAN BRUI'GHL, CALLI'D VELVET BRUEGEL (1568-1625). FLOWER PIECE. BAYERISCHE STAATSGEMALUESAMMLUNGEN, MUNICH.

WILLEM

KALI' (1619-1693). STILL LIFE. H. H.

THYSSEN COLLECTION, CASTAGNOLA (tICINO), SWITZERLAND.

211

REMBRANDT

Rembrandt's Flayed

Ox

is in effect

really belong to still life painting as

image of human anguish,

picture,

be

A yet

found

in

the

still life,

we have defined

heavy-laden to

a

the

most

but

it.

not

it does

It

is the

intensely

most

religious

whole of seventeenth-century painting.

Crucifixion by Matthias Grtinewald could not be more tragic; this

ox

in

is,

treated as a victim

human



the victim, as

makes no attempt at a

from a hook

terms, nearer to us.

we

Rembrandt's ox

all are, of

human

greed.

confused mass of heavy brushstrokes.

Then we

more than a

how well

realise

impasto of the paints renders the texture and the form of the

Here

He

detailed description of this bloody carcass hung

in the butcher 's shop ; at first sight, it seems no

as if the painter

is

had torn away

the

object,

strips of flesh from the tortured carcass.

the pictorial process really achieves

a transposition of the artist's

personal sufferings from himself to another. Rembrandt shows neither

sympathy nor pity for the flayed animal, but he it ;

he exists in

it.

identifies

himself with

Before this bloody, mutilated carcass, he had a

sudden revelation of the condition of man, of his own being and destiny.

Just as the carcass his

own

is

illuminated by a ray of light, so, to Rembrandt,

suffering illuminates the darkness of the world.

The picture

is

a spiritual self-portrait, the most tragic and true of the many he painted. In this act of extreme humility, an unexpected ray of hope lights up the shadows of despair. This painting is the pictorial counterpart of the terrifying "existentialist illumination" experienced by

two centuries

212

later.

Kierkegaard

E. C. 64

REMBRANDT

(1606-1669).

THE FLAYED OX,

1655. LOlfVRE, PARIS.

TEACHING AND EDUCATING

If the image

form given to thought, the problem arises of determining to what extent the creation of images and their power to stimulate action can be influenced and directed. Once it is granted that the image is an embodiment of thought and a stimulus to action, two lines of direction are marked out: one points upwards, the other inwards; one teaches, the other educates. The first is the way of authority, justified by dogmatic truth, by an infallible and divine mandate. The second is the way of liberty, founded on the recognition of man's ability

make

to

his

the

is

own

choice, to define his

own

values.

The

than in philosophy. positions, Catholic

On

and Protestant, are easy to

What

On

suasion ?

one hand,

nated to universal

which,

on

does not aim it

aims

at

the

are

which

authority. Art,

a particular utility

utility, to

earth,

two methods of

is

the

is

which could lead

all

mankind

to universal salvation,

regardless of nationality, race, or class.

The Church

strongly affirmed the principle of a spiritual hierarchy, because divine authority needs diary if

it is

to descend to earth;

intermediary, a "ladder,"

if

he

is

some interme-

and man needs an

to ascend to heaven.

But while the Church maintains that men's duties and responsibilities are hierarchically graduated lays

subordi-

it is

State

of divine

institutions

based on the imagination,

persuading us of anything specific;

at

disposing the spirit to envisage the univer-

by the renunciation of human wants and individual choice. At the same time, art demonstrates that the imagination (objectively speaking the only means of making us believe that the good of the Church, sal

good of

or that of the State, coincides with the

the

down

it

concealing

experience of particular objects but

is

indeed the

nevertheless

tantamount to universal experience. In the art

is

didactic, for

in the second,

it

case,

imparts the notion of value;

it

is

first

educative, for

seek out and find our

own

it

teaches us to

values.

The seventeenth century did not

resolve

the

problem of the concept and of the thing in itself, of authority and liberty; this was to be the main concern of the philosophy of the Enlightenment,

down

to Kant. It stated the problem, however, in

dialectical

terms

—in

art

perhaps even more clearly

all,

indeed that

;

only experience objectively possible)

is

to

namely God, imagination suffices (not logic, philosophy or science) but it is necessary at the same time to prevent indifference or inertia from checking the flight of the imagination, and to see to it that all the operations of the mind and hand are guided by the imagination, or (which is the same thing) that technique is guided by art. The craftsman is accord-

gives

results

open

In order to conceive the universal,

ecumenical.

demonstrates that experience of the particular (the

achieve

is

who, on earth, have fewer duties and responsibilities, and hence less authority. The social action of the Church is unlimited, it is truly

it

can

that salvation

also

it

easier for those

which are real, concrete, visible, tangible, useful, and therefore productive. Art which proceeds from the particular individual)

was

regarded as universally applicable, the only principle

per-

Church and the

trace.

the Catholic side, the principle of authority

according to the strength of the individual, are the aims of these

two

religious origins of the

monumental decoration which lifts

ingly enjoined to give each object a character, to overlay

beyond the it

a

with a

utilitarian limits

spatial its

it

of

its

function and

without destroying or

value,

original form.

But we are dealing here

And

in

became

a

with an essentially quantitative production. fact,

as

the

recognized

seventeenth-century

member of the

artist

professional bourgeoisie,

an ever sharper distinction was made between

art

and craftsmanship, with the result that the craftsman and his work were subordinated to the controlling authority of the artist, or at least to the models supplied by him.

The

attitude

of the Protestant Church, which

denied the necessity of any mediation between

and God, was exactly the reverse of

this.

man

Art,

it

maintained,

born,

is

function in a purely

theocracy stated the clear if

and exercises

develops

human

The Calvinist problem of human activity in sphere.

uncompromising terms. Each of us

is

indivi-

dually predestined to salvation or eternal damnation,

but our worldly success, even the wealth amass,

is

we may

a sure sign of predestined election.

bourgeoisie

is

of the world

therefore an elect class, and

its

The view

and objective precisely because the bourgeoisie does not have otherworldly aims; it is the view of one who, living in this world, bears the stamp of divine election. Because the is

clear, accurate

which makes him confident of the rightness of his actions and scornful of any guidance from above, he repudiates every principle of authority and every political attempt to control his imagination. Hence the bourgeois

Protestant

feels

this inner certainty,

against

revolt

established

authority

(Cromwell comes to mind at once). Denying to human endeavor any otherworldly end or aim, the Protestant

peoples

proceeded

transform

to

In seventeenth-century Europe, these two concep-

its

the

tions existed side

by

side; far

complemented each other

from

dialectically.

aspect of the art of this period

lies in

of art

— should be

stated.

The

it

does not teach,

limitations

of

it

this

educates.

Whatever may be the

conception,

problem of human activity from and brought it down to earth.

it

released

the

soterial finalism

it

is

not

enough; it must be linked with the art of pleasing, which consists in so disposing the mind and the will as to

make

us feel the desirability of the things or

measures proposed; in short, to make us ardently be persuaded.

The

depends on what Pascal called the

obedience or docility to instruction from above:

the fact that

art of persuading

about the industrial revolution and founding modern does not make for

positive



desire

life

The

smoothed over the doctrinal differences between these two conceptions; it removed the barriers erected by intransigence and made communication and criticism possible. When the tension between these two ideological and religious positions was at its height, Pascal saw intuitively how complex was the problem of free communication between men, a problem whose implications were as yet only dimly felt. Without any reference to the art of his time, but intent only on the great conflict between science and faith, he indicated in what terms the problem of persuasion which was also the problem

medieval handicrafts into industries, thus bringing capitalism. This attitude to

conflicting, they

to

try," the art

art

of persuading

"spirit

of geome-

of pleasing on the "spirit of subtlety."

Without the continuous coexistence and interrelation of both we cannot have that fullness of life which all

the art of the seventeenth century attempted to

achieve through images which were no longer sory, but real

and concrete.

illu-

INDEX OF ARTISTS

Aertsen Pieter 202. Alberti Leon Battista 34, 46. Aleijadinho, see Francisco Lisboa.

Fetti Domenico 139, 144. Fischer von Erlach Johann Bernhard

Algardi Alessandro Anguier Michel 52. AsT Balthasar van der

FoNTANA Carlo 106, Fontana Domenico

163, 167.

Baciccia, see Gaulli.

Gaulli Giovanni

Bamboccianti The 96, 136, 192, 195. Baschenis Evaristo 205. Baugin Lubin 206, 207, 209. Bernini Gian Lorenzo 35, 45-47, 57, 65-67, 69-71, 74, 76, 79, 95, 96, 104-106, 108, 110, 112, 113, 122, 123, 125, 126, 130, 148, 149, 154, 156. Beuckelaer Joachim 202. 59.

Blondel Francois 35, 52. BoRGiANNi Orazio 145, 147, 193. BoRROMiNi Francesco 35, 47, 70, 94-96,

104-106,

III,

113,

122,

Bourdon Sebastien 195, 196. Brouwer Adriaen 137, 192, 193. Bruant Liberal 51. Bruegel Jan ("Velvet Bruegel")

207,

Caravaggio

123, 127, 128, 131, 149. Guercino 64, 65, 68, 82.

85, 87, 88, 94-99, i22> 124, 125, 135, 136, 145. 153. 170, 171, 173, 192, 193,

202, 203, 206, 207.

Carracci Annibale

17, 18, 25, 26, 33, 58, 65, 68, 72, 74, 94-97, loi, 136, 150,

Carracci Ludovico 82. Centino 82. Cerquozzi Michelangelo Champaigne Philippe de

96, 150, 151, 158, 159, 163,

157, 159. 162, 164. Churriguera Jose B. de Claesz Pieter 205.

82, 136, 151,

115, 117.

Claude Lorrain

95, 96, loi, 135, 171, 177, 179, 183, 185. CoRTONA Pietro da 18, 19, 33, 58, 59, 96, 104, 106, 109, 113, 122, 129, 131.

CoYSEVox Antoine 53, 54. Crescenzi Giovanni Battista

Pieter de

115.

153. 155, 170-

DuGHET Gaspard 179. Dyck Anthony van 72,

150, 151, 157,

159, 161, 172, 174.

194, 195, 200. 205.

72, 96, 98. 40.

Kalf Willem 205, 207, Koninck Philips 172. Pieter van,

La La Le Le Le Le

II

Adam

96, 170-172, 181, 188.

47,

zii.

136, 192,

139, 143. 82-84. 63, 100, 136, 193.

198.

79, 97. 155, 170, 172,

Peter Paul

Pieter

91, 92, 172. 145, 146, 170,

171,

Sassoferrato 82. Serodine Giovanni Snyders Frans 157, Steen Jan 192, 195, Tassi Agostino 171. Teniers David 137, Ter Borch Gerard Testa Pietro 170.

193. 159, 205. 199.

192, 193. 137.

Velazquez Diego

55.

Lippi Lorenzo 139, 142. Longhena Baldassarre 50, 51. 45, 57, 104, 106, 108,

10, III, 113.

71, 85, 89, 96-98, 100, 124, 136, 137, 139, 140, 150-152, 163, 168, 203. Vermeer Jan 98, 135, 137, 172, 186, 187, 194, 195, 201. Vittone Bernardo Antonio 106.

VouET Simon

138, 139.

123.

Mansart Francois 36, 46, 51, Mazzoni Sebastiano 61, 62. Metsu Gabriel 205. MocHi Francesco 73, 75.

Mola

105,

193.

Gabriel 51. Nain Louis 136. Nain brothers 136, 139, 141, 195,

Carlo

93,

187, 190, 192.

Saraceni Carlo

Due

Le Vau Louis 46, 52, Linard Jacques 205.

91,

69,

24, 71, 96-98, 100, 102, 124, 137. 151. 158, 159. 163, 166, 172, 175, 179, 187, 189, 193, 194, 212, 213. Reni Guido 25, 27, 29, 65, 68, 72, 82, 94, 100, 136, 150.

Saenredam

Bamboccio

Hyre Laurent de Tour Georges de Brun Charles 61,

Pier Francesco

Morazzone Elsheimer

Rainaldi Carlo

23, 24, 28, 29, 59, 69. 71. 72, 95-97. 100, 103, 130, 131, 136, 137. 151, 171, 172, 174. 178, 187, 191. RuisDAEL Jacob van 172, 187. RuoppoLO Giovanni Battista 205.

172.

36.

Jordaens Jacob Juvarra Filippo

1

100,

59, 106.

Rubens

Maderna

29, 30, 61, 72, 94,

183, 184.

Pozzo Andrea

Herrera Juan de Hobbema Meindert

Maffei Francesco

Domenichino

60, 61, 71, 82, 94-97, 99-101, 154, 155, 171, 172, 176, 179,

RiBERA Giuseppe 72, 78, Rosa Salvator 155, 154,

115, 203.

Crespi Daniele 85, 86. CuYP Aelbert 172.

54, 105.

Jules 51,53. Claesz 205. Heijden Jan van der 172. Helst Bartholomeus van der 154.

195, 197. 192.

Perrault Claude 46, Patte Pierre 35. Potter Paulus 172.

Rembrandt

Hardouin-Mansart

Laer

170, 173, 181-183.

137, 193.

106.

169.

Jones Inigo

202.

18, 25, 29, 33, 71, 82, 84,

OsTADE Adriaen van

PoussiN Nicolas

HuYSUM Jan van

35.

Campi family of painters

Baciccia

II

Gentileschi Artemisia 193. Gentileschi Orazio 171, 193. Gramatica Antiveduto 82. Grimmer Abel 171, 181. Guarini Guarino 71, 105, 108, no,

HoocH

210.

Pierre

Battista,

119.

Heda Willem

125, 127, 148, 149.

Bullet

108, 110. 35, 122.

18, 20, 59, 106.

Hals Frans 71, 123,

172. 106.

106.

Francisco Lisboa, "O Aleijadinho"

205.

Neer Aert van der Neumann Balthasar

52.

ZiMBALO Francesco Zuccari Federico

170.

ZuRBARAN

74, 77.

MuRiLLO Bartolomeo Esteban

Wouwerman Philips 172. Wren Christopher 35, 36,

72, 82.

39, 51.

115. 15, 94.

Francisco 69, 82, 85, 90, 162, 165, 203, 207, 208. 163,

LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS

ALGARDI

Alessandro

ANGUIER

Michel (161 2-1686). Sculpture on the Porte Saint-Denis,

(i

595-1654). Bust of

ANONYMOUS MASTER.

Lubin (about 1612-1663).

BERNINI

Gian Lorenzo

The Fountain of

(i

The Baldachin over

598-1680).

the Rivers in the Piazza Navona,

St Teresa, 1645-165

The Facade of

the Palazzo Barberini,

Quirinale,

al

The Fountain of Bust of Francesco

Rome,

2.

the

High

BOGOTA

in the Sala Sistina, Vatican Library,

d'Este, detail, 1650-165

1.

1.

Francois (about 1618-1686).

ft)

.

Rome

no

dome, 1658

112

Piazza Navona,

Rome

130

Vi")

Modena

130

Museo Nazionale, Florence

Saint-Denis, Paris, 1672. (75'/2X75>/2

156 52

ft)

(Colombia). Chapel of St Christopher in the Church of La Compania

118

Francesco (1599-1667). The Church of Sant'Agnese in Agone, Rome, 1653-1657

The Holy Family, about

Rome, 1637-1650. eiusdem exemplaribus petitum," Rome, 1725 The Oratorio

dei Filippini,

Church of SantTvo

alia

Sapienza,

Print

1612. (giV^xSo") Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica,

Rome

in

from "Opus Architectonicum Equitis Francisci Borromini ex 127

Rome, 1642-1650.

Print

from "Opera del Cavalier Francesco Borromini, cavata Roma," Rome, 1720

dai

127

Sebastien (1616-1671). Beggars, 1640-1645. (i9y4X25y2") Louvre, Paris

196

la

Liberal (about 1635-1697). Hotel des Invalides, Paris, 1671-1676

BRUEGEL

Jan, called Velvet Bruegel

(i

51

568-1625). Flower Piece. (49X37!/2") Bayerische Staatsgemaldesammlungen,

Munich

210

CARAVAGGIO

— —

The Supper

— —

Emmaus,

at

Hercules

The

Annibale at the

the Virgin, 1605-1606. (145

about 1595. (55 X77y2") National Gallery,

(i

'A

x 96

y*")

Louvre, Paris

87

London

88

206

560-1609). Decorations in the Gallery of the Palazzo Farnese,

Crossroads,

1

595-1 597. (65y4X93y2")

Philippe de (1602-1674).

Portrait of Cardinal Richelieu,

CHURRIGUERA

Museo Nazionale

Two Nuns

di

Rome,

1

597-1604

(1600-1682).

17

Capodimonte, Naples

26

Rome

182

of Port Royal, 1662. (65X9o'/2") Louvre, Paris

157

1635. (87y2x6i") Louvre, Paris

164

Jose B. de (1665-1725). High Altar of the Church of San Esteban, Salamanca, 1693-1696

CLAUDE LORRAIN



The Death of

Flight into Egypt, about 1603. (4-j%xc)oyi") Galleria Doria,

CHAMPAIGNE



(1573-1610).

Basket of Fruit, about 1595. (18x25") Pinacoteca Ambrosiana, Milan

CARRACCI

147

fabbrica della Sapienza in

suoi originali, cio^ la chiesa et

BOURDON

66

76

BORROMINI

BRUANT

'/z

67

(Height 42") Galleria Estense,

The Porte

Rome, 1624-1633. (Height 92

Orazio (1578-1616).



39-40

.

209

BORGIANNI



Rome

in 1633

Rome. Finished

interior of the

167 52

Rome, 1648-165 1

Portrait of Costanza Buonarelli, about 1635. (Height 27

BLONDEL

1674-1676

Paris,

Altar of St Peter's,

Santa Maria della Vittoria,

the Rivers, detail, 1648-165 I

Rome

Life with Wafers. (20'/2Xi6") Louvre, Paris

Still

The Ecstasy of Sant'Andrea

Maidalchini, about 1645. (Height 29") Galleria Doria,

Pope Sixtus V's Plan of Rome, 1589. Fresco

BAUGIN

— — — — — — —

Donna Olimpia

The Rest on

the Flight into Egypt. (39 y2X49y2") Galleria Doria,

Sketch of Trees. Pen and Bistre Wash. (11x8") Albertina, Vienna

Rome

.... ....

117 185

177

219

CORTONA

Pietro da (1596-1669). Glorification of the Reign of

Urban VIII, 1633-1639. Fresco

in the Palazzo Barberini,

Rome

— —

19

Fa9ade of the Church of Santa Maria della Pace, Rome, 1656-1657

COYSEVOX



Nave of Santa Maria

Ceiling Fresco in the

Antoine (1640-1720). The

The Passage of

the Rhine,

Tomb

showing Louis

in Vallicella,

109

Rome, 1664-1665

129

of Cardinal Mazarin, 1689-1692. Louvre, Paris

XIV crowned

53

by Victory. Bas-relief in the Salon de

la

Guerre, Palace of

Versailles

CRESPI

54

Daniele (about 1598-1630).

The Supper of

St Charles

Borromeo, about 1628. (103 % x 72

Vz")

Santa Maria della

Passione, Milan

DOMENICHINO

86

(1581-1641). St Cecilia distributing Clothes to the Poor, 1614-1615. Fresco in San Luigi dei Francesi,

Rome



Self-Portrait,

about 1620.

Portrait of Charles

ELSHEIMER Adam FETTI Domenico

FONTANA GAULLI

Portrait of Frans Snyders

and

his Wife,

about 1622. (32 y4X43

Vi")

Gemaldegalerie, Cassel

The

Flight into Egypt, 1609. (i2X i6y4") Bayerische Staatsgemaldesammlungen,

(1589-1623). Melancholy, about 1613. (66

V4

x 50

'/z")

Munich

Louvre, Paris

Carlo (1634-1714). Facade of the Church of San Marcello

Corso, Rome, 1682-1683

al

Name

110

of Jesus, 1674- 1679. Fresco in the

Rome

20 110-111

Section of the Cappella della Sindone, Turin. Print from "Architettura Civile," Turin, 1737

GUERCINO HALS

(i

Dome

128

591-1666). Aurora, 1621. Fresco in the Casino Ludovisi,

Vooght

127

of the Cappella della Sindone, Turin, 1668

Rome

64

Frans (about 1580-1666). The Regents of the Haarlem Almshouse, 1664. (67x98") Frans Hals

Cornelia

Claesdt, Wife of Nicholas van der Meer,

Museum, Haarlem

169

HARDOUIN-MANSART

Jules (1646-1708).



the Palace of Versailles, 1679-1684 (with the collaboration of Louis

The Garden Facade of

Pieter de (1629-about 1684).

JUVARRA

Filippo

(i

676-1 736).

KALF

Willem (1619-1693).

LAER

Pieter

The

Dome

of the Hotel des Invalides, Paris, 1679-1706

The Linen Cupboard,

1663. (28

Vi

x 30

Vz")

Piazza San Carlo in Turin, 1721. Print.

Still Life. (31

'/z

x 25

'//')

Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

Museo

Arithmetic, 1650. (40 '/2X43")

i6'/2")

Hannema de

51

Le Vau)

53

....

Civico, Turin

H. H. Thyssen Collection, Castagnola (Ticino), Switzerland

van (about 1592-1642). The Pastry Vendor, about 1630. (iz'^x

LA HYRE Laurent de la (1606-1656).

....

211

Rome

197

Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica,

Stuers Foundation, Castle of Het Nyenhuis,

Georges de (1593-1652). The Magdalen, about 1625. (50'/2X37") Louvre,

LE BRUN

Charles (1619-1690). Moses defending the Daughters of Jethro, 1686. (44'/2X48") Galleria Estense,

LE DUC LE NAIN

— —

Paris

83

Modena

Fagade of the Church of Santa Croce, 1549-1695

Gabriel (?-i704). Brothers.

The Christening

LE VAU

220

143

LA TOUR

(Italy).

200

40

Heino, Holland

LECCE

158

Burgomaster of Haarlem, 1631. (495/4x40") Frans Hals

Museum, Haarlem

HOOCH

188

144

Guarino (1624-1683). Fagade of the Palazzo Carignano, Turin, 1679-1685

Interior of the

157 161

Giovanni Battista (1639- 1709), called Baciccia. The Triumph of the

GUARINI



155

about 1635. (io7y4x83y4'') Louvre, Paris

(1578-1610).

Chiesa del Gesu,

— —

I,

Florence

Uffizi,

DYCK Anthony van (i 599-1641).



30

;

Venus

Dome at

116

of the Church of Val-de-Grace, Paris

Vulcan's Forge, 1641. (59x45

'/i")

63

51

Musee des Beaux-Arts, Rheims

141

Feast, 1642. (24x305/4") Louvre, Paris

198

Louis (1612-1670). Hotel d'Aumont, Paris, 1645

52

The Garden Fa9ade of

the Palace of Versailles, 1679- 1684 (with the collaboration of Jules Hardouin-Mansart)

.

.

53

LIPPI Lorenzo (1606-1665). Music. (^^xzSVi") Andrea Busiri-Vici Collection, Rome

LONGHENA

MADERNA



Carlo

Fa9ade of St

MANSART



Baldassare (1598-1682). (1 5

56-1629). Facade of the

Rome. Finished

Peter's,

Fran9ois

The Church of Santa Maria

(i

in

della Salute, Venice, 1631-1687

51

Church of Santa Susanna, Rome, 1603 1

110

614

iii

The Church of Val-de-GrSce,

598-1666).

142

1645-1665

Paris,

51

Additions to Le Vau's Hotel d'Aumont, Paris

MAZZONI

52

Sebastiano (1611-1678). Jephthah's Sacrifice, about 1650. (46x59") Samuel H. Kress Collection, William

Rockhill Nelson Gallery, Kansas City, Missouri

MOCHI

Francesco

MORAZZONE PERRAULT POUSSIN

— — — —

Self-Portrait,

The Finding of Moses,

1650. (30'/2X25

'A")

75

Milan

77

Paris,

1664-1668

54

1638. (36'/2X47y4") Louvre, Paris

1631. (^iViX-joVj') Gemaldegalerie,

Flora,

Rome

St Francis. Castello Sforzesco,

Claude (161 3-1688). The Colonnade of the Louvre,

60

Dresden

100

Louvre, Paris

155

Forest Scene. Pen and Bistre Wash. (10x7") Albertina, Vienna

The Death of Phocion,

176

1648. (45 X69") Collection of the Earl of Plymouth,

The Church of Santa Maria

(Mexico).

Oakly Park, Ludlow

(1606-1669).

The Rape of Ganymede,

The Anatomy Lesson of Doctor Tulp, The Man with

View of

184 120-121

del Rosario

Carlo (1611-1691). Interior of the Church of Santa Maria in Campitella,

REMBRANDT

1635. (67

'/z

x

5 1

Rome, 1663-1667

93

%") Gemaldegalerie, Dresden

1632. (63x88") Mauritshuis,

102

The Hague

158

a Gilt Helmet, about 1652. (26^x2oy4") Staatliche Museen, Berlin

166

Pen and Bistre Wash. (9x11") Louvre, Paris

the Singel Canal at Amersfoort.

(Inv. 22 896)

175

Cottages under a Stormy Sky. (7X9'/2") Albertina, Vienna (Inv. 8880)

Stormy Landscape, about 1638. (20

The Flayed Ox,

RIBERA

ROME.

x 28

'A")

Herzog Anton Ulrich Museum, Brunswick

189

1655. (37X26!4") Louvre, Paris

213 27

Jusepe (about 1588-1652). St Sebastian, 1638-1651. {47%^ ^^Vz") Museo Nazionale di Capodimonte, Naples

78

(1575-1642).

The Massacre of

Pope Sixtus V's Plan of Rome,

Aerial

ROSA

'/a

175

....

RENI Guido



The Ecstasy of

571-1626).

(i

The Realm of

RAINALDI



580-1654). St Veronica, 1629-1640. St Peter's,

Nicolas (1594-1665).

PUEBLA

— — — — — —

(i

62

View of

St Peter's,

the Innocents, about 1611. (io5y2x67") Pinacoteca,

1589. Fresco in the Sala Sistina, Vatican Library,

Rome, with

Bologna

Rome

39-40

Bernini's Colonnade

42

Salvator (t6i 5-1673). Portrait of his Wife Lucrezia, about 1650. (26x32'/2'') Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Antica,

Rocky Landscape with

RUBENS

Figures, after 1656-1660. (19

Peter Paul (1577-1640).

y4

x 25 'A") Private Collection,

Henry IV presented with the

Rome

Rome

190

Portrait of Marie de' Medici, about 1622. (i55xii6y2")

Louvre, Paris

— — — —

28

The Three Graces, about

1639. (87y4X7iy4") Prado,

Sketch for the "Marriage of Marie de' Medici,"

Madrid

103

detail, 1622-1623. Private Collection, Paris

Study of Trees (for the "Boar Hunt"). Pen and Pencil. (23x16

'A")

Louvre, Paris (Inv. 20 212)

Pieter

(i

597-1665). Interior of St John's

Church

at

Utrecht, 1645. (i6y2x 13

SARACENI

Carlo (about 15 85-1620). The Miracle of St Benno, i6i6. Pont. Deutsche Nationalkirche Santa Maria dell'Anima, Rome

STEEN

Jan (1626-1679). The World Turned Upside

TURGOT



130 178

Landscape with Philemon and Baucis, about 1620. (58x82y2") Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna

SAENREDAM

Down.

The

Invalides

Instit.

y4")

Bastille

Central

Teutonic.

(4iy2X56V2") Kunsthistorisches

Anne-Robert-Jacques (1727-1781). Plan of Paris: The

Plan of Paris:

155

S.

191

Museum, Utrecht

92

Mariae de Anima, 146

Museum, Vienna

and the Place Royale

.

.

.

199 41 41

221

VELAZQUEZ

— —

Apollo

The

VOUET

,

.

140

Rome

168

Jan (1632-1675). View of Delft, about 1658. (39x46

Guitar Player, about 1667. (2ixi8'/4")

Simon

(i

590-1649).

y*")

Mauritshuis,

The Hague

186

Lord Iveagh Bequest, Kenwood House, London

Time Vanquished by Fame, Love and Beauty.

x

(72

5

2 %")

Musee du

201 Berry, Hotel Cujas,

Bourges

138

WREN

Christopher (1632-1723). Project for the Reconstruction of London, 1666. (27x13 (All Souls Wren Drawing No. 7)



St Paul's Cathedral,

ZURBARAN

— —

Francisco

London, (i

1

598-1664).

'A")

All Souls College, Oxford

39

675-1710

The Funeral of

51 St

Bonaventure, 1629. (98

'A

x 88%") Louvre, Paris

90

Father Jeronimo Perez. (80^/2x48") Academia de San Fernando, Madrid Still

89

Vulcan's Forge, 1630. (88X114V2") Prado, Madrid

Pope Innocent X, 1650. (55x47 Vi") Galleria Doria,

VERMEER



at

Diego (1599-1660). The Old Cook, 1617-1622. (39x46") National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh

Life with Oranges,

Lemons and

a Rose, 1633. (23V2X42") Contini-Bonacossi Collection, Florence

165

....

208

PRINTED ON THE PRESSES OF EDITIONS d'ART ALBERT SKIRA I 5

OCTOBER

I

964

PHOTOGRAPHS BY Agraci, Paris (pages 175 above and 178), Alinari, Florence (pages 57 upper right, 75, 77, J09, no, III above, i2g, 755 upper left, 156), Alpenland, Vienna (pages lys below, iy6, 177), Anderson, Rome (pages 76, 75,5 upper right), De Antonis, Rome (pages 20, 39-40), Archives Photographigues, Pans (pages 52 above, S3 below), Maurice Babey, Basel (pages 17, 30, 54, 60, 66, 67, 83, 87, go, c)3, 127, 130 upper left, 138, 141, 142, 144, 146, 147, 161, 164, 167, iSs, ig6, 797, 79