In the hands, and brushes, of great artists, a religious set-piece becomes a succession of marvellous and highly innovative paintings.
Are they part of a narrative, or staffage? Do they provide scale, or enhance the effect? Are the figures part of the landscape, or even the landscape itself?
Painters of the early northern Renaissance founded modern Western landscape painting, and developed the first examples of staffage.
Let these paintings fool you: that’s what they’re all about. Happy April Fool’s Day!
Did Antonello da Messina learn to paint with oils in Flanders, and bring back a revolution to Italy?
A detailed look at the materials and technique in van Eyck’s mature works, and those of Lucas Cranach the Elder.
The major problems in oil painting had been solved before the van Eycks. One was a reliable supply of solvent/diluent spirits.
Introduction to a series explaining the history of oil paint, effects on techniques, hence on paintings themselves.
Probably his earliest surviving painting, his originality and genius are already starting to shine through its conventional features.
A glance through some of the unofficial history of visible brushstrokes and other painter’s marks.