antonio pollaiuolo

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Purchase of this book includes free trial access to where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER III CHARACTERISTICS OF HIS ART faultless draughtsmanship of Antonio was recognised by all the early critics as his preeminent quality. Vasari, Cellini and Baldinucci, far as they were from comprehending his true position in the development of Florentine art, gave him the first place as a draughtsman, and their praise is below his merits. His figures are invariably well proportioned, showing an acquaintance with anatomy that only the dissecting-table could give ; his modelling is perfect, with a feeling for the bone and muscle which enables us at will to see the figure as it is presented, as an écorché, or as a skeleton ; his perspective is invariably correct, and his space values are admirably managed. It is true that, in accordance with his special interests, he constructs his figures with no regard to beauty in the general acceptation of the word. His types are selected solely with a view to interpret strength and energy, and have not the symmetry of a Greek statue nor any manifestation of intellectual development. His types of male nude are two, one lean and sinewy, with immense shoulders and chest, small hips and bent legs—the type of theHercules—the other more of the Doryphorous build, broader in the flanks and stouter, as in the Discard and the Battle of the Nudes. How much the first and most characteristic of these types influenced his contemporaries, may be seen in the numerous life studies of the epoch and in the paintings of Verrocchio, of Mantegna and of Botticelli. During the early part of his life he seems to have given little attention to the female nude, probably considering that it offered small scope for his special interests. As far as we know he never carved or painted a Madonna, except in the Annunciation of the Silver Cross and in the Birth of...
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