By John C Van Dyke L H D
An illustrated brown fabric variation
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He has been called the father of Italian painting, but Italian painting had no father. Cimabue was simply a man of more originality and ability than his contemporaries, and departed further from the art teachings of the time without decidedly opposing them. He retained the Byzantine pattern, but loosened the lines of drapery somewhat, turned the head to one side, infused the figure with a little appearance of life. His contemporaries elsewhere in Italy were doing the same thing, and none of them was any more than a link in the progressive chain.
The pagan Orpheus charming the animals of the wood was finally adopted as a symbol, or perhaps an ideal likeness of Christ. Then followed more direct representation in classic form and manner, the Old Testament prefiguring and emphasizing the New. Jonah appeared cast into the sea and cast by the whale on dry land again as a symbol of the New Testament resurrection, and also as a representation of the actual occurrence. Moses striking the rock symbolized life eternal, and David slaying Goliath was Christ victorious.
In that way the Ferrarese school became somewhat complicated with the Bolognese school, and is confused in its history to this day. Costa was not unlikely the real founder, or, at the least, the strongest influencer of the Bolognese school. He was a painter of a rugged, manly type, afterward tempered by Southern influences to softness and sentiment. This was the result of Paduan methods meeting at Bologna with Umbrian sentiment. FIG. —PERUGINO. MADONNA, SAINTS, AND ANGELS. LOUVRE. The Perugino type and influence had found its way to Bologna, and showed in the work of Francia (1450-1518), a contemporary and fellow-worker with Costa.