From 1450-1650, paintings of ‘Christian sibyls’ who foretold the birth of Christ, became important motifs for painting. Here’s a selection.
Western paintings of devils from Michelangelo to Fuseli show the great influence of Hieronymus Bosch.
He started the practice of undercutting his prices, sometimes painting at the cost of materials. His first work for Madonna dell’Orto, where he is now buried.
Vociferous opponent of Impressionism, hugely successful and popular, he taught more than 2,000 pupils. The start of a systematic account of his narrative paintings.
Known from ancient times, in the Renaissance it was the standard underpainting for flesh. Fine examples from Michelangelo, Vermeer, and others.
An unusual myth told vividly by Ovid, which appears never to have been painted. But there are some fine engravings, and a marvellous watercolour by Blake.
Greek painted pots, a pair of gold earrings, and a rude quiver: how they led a beer advertisement into danger.
Based on Michelangelo’s fresco in the Sistine Chapel, these unique works tell us more about Blake’s beliefs than his other paintings.
The visual tradition of a stairway to heaven appears quite recent. I propose that Blake was its originator.
Just because his paintings appear so original and different, that doesn’t mean that they don’t borrow from and refer to other visual art.