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Article

Paul Davies and David Hemsoll

(b Genoa, Feb 14, 1404; d Rome, April 1472).

Italian architect, sculptor, painter, theorist and writer. The arts of painting, sculpture and architecture were, for Alberti, only three of an exceptionally broad range of interests, for he made his mark in fields as diverse as family ethics, philology and cryptography. It is for his contribution to the visual arts, however, that he is chiefly remembered. Alberti single-handedly established a theoretical foundation for the whole of Renaissance art with three revolutionary treatises, on painting, sculpture and architecture, which were the first works of their kind since Classical antiquity. Moreover, as a practitioner of the arts, he was no less innovative. In sculpture he seems to have been instrumental in popularizing, if not inventing, the portrait medal, but it was in architecture that he found his métier. Building on the achievements of his immediate predecessors, Filippo Brunelleschi and Michelozzo di Bartolomeo, he reinterpreted anew the architecture of antiquity and introduced compositional formulae that have remained central to classical design ever since....

Article

Helen M. Hills

(b Ciminna, Jan 24, 1634; d Palermo, July 3, 1714).

Italian architect, writer and painter. He trained as a priest in Palermo and entered the Padri Ministri degl’Infermi. Another member of this Order was Giacomo Amato, with whom he worked, although they were not related. While serving as a chaplain Amato studied geometry, architecture, optics and engraving. His earliest known artistic work is a painting on copper of the Miracle of S Rosalia (1663), the patron saint of Palermo. After 1686 he created many works of an ephemeral character. For the feasts of S Rosalia and for important political events he provided designs for lavish triumphal chariots, probably developed from those by Jacques Callot, triumphal arches and other ceremonial apparatus set up on principal roads and piazzas, and he painted hangings, papier-mâché models and massive altarpieces for the cathedral. These works influenced Amato’s permanent architecture. The spiral columns of the campanile of S Giuseppe dei Teatini, Palermo, recall the festival designs of ...

Article

Tatsushi Takahashi

(b Leiden, c. 1618; d ?Batavia [Jakarta] after July 11, 1664).

Dutch writer, painter and etcher. He is now known chiefly as the author of Lof der schilder-konst (Dut.: Praise of painting). Originally a lecture given to Leiden artists on 18 October 1641, St Luke’s Day, it was published the following year. At present virtually no works of art are attributed to this Philips Angel except the etching Head of an Old Man (1637), a rather coarse imitation of Rembrandt. Although nothing is known about his training, this etching and certain ideas within Lof der schilder-konst suggest that Angel had been in contact with Rembrandt shortly before becoming a master painter in Leiden in 1638. The first half of this small book enumerates the most famous painters from antiquity to Angel’s contemporaries and makes the traditional comparisons between painting, sculpture and poetry. The second half discusses the skills necessary for a good painter. The latter section is more original as the author occasionally refers to such new genres as seascapes, battle scenes and guardroom scenes. His interest in the exact depiction of appearances has a close relation to the extremely minute renderings for which Gerrit Dou and other Leiden painters became famous....

Article

Pilar Benito

(b Barcelona, 1755; d Barcelona, Sept 7, 1822).

Spanish writer and painter. He was a member of the Real Escuela de la Junta de Comercio in Barcelona, where he was primarily active in a political capacity rather than as an artist and professor in its Escuela de Nobles Artes. He was expelled from the Junta in 1814 because he had taken the oath of loyalty to the usurper King Joseph Bonaparte, and as a result of accusations of favouring the French he spent his last years in total isolation from public life. His work as a writer on art is of considerable interest. He strongly defended French Neo-classicism and, in particular, the artists François Gérard and Jacques-Louis David. In a lecture he gave to the Junta de Comercio in 1810 he proclaimed the absolute validity of academic classicism, and this belief also pervades such manuscript pamphlets as the Discurso sobre la enseñanza del dibujo, Máximas generales para la pintura...

Article

Pilar Benito

(b Santander, 1824; d Madrid, 1897).

Spanish painter and writer. He was a pupil of the landscape painter Carlos de Haes at the Escuela Superior in Madrid and exhibited at the National Fine Arts Exhibitions of 1858, 1860, 1862 and 1866. His artistic career, however, is less significant than his profound knowledge of art. He published articles in La Ilustración española y americana, El Día, Arte en España and the Revista de bellas artes (all published in Madrid), at a time when art criticism, understood as ‘a commentary on work, made with some degree of authority’, was still in its infancy in Spain. He gave several lectures at the Ateneo Cientifico, Literario y Artístico in Madrid, such as: ‘Observaciones sobre el concepto del Arte’ (15 May 1884), ‘Los desenvolvimientos de la pintura—López, Madrazo, Rosales, Fortuny’ (1887) and ‘La España del siglo XIX: Goya y su época’ (1895). His publications include the monographs ...

Article

(b Madrid, 1664; d Madrid, Feb 15, 1726).

Spanish architect, painter and writer. He was trained in architecture by the Jesuits and in painting by Claudio Coello and worked mainly as an architect. Two overdoors showing multiple allegorical scenes of the Battle of Lepanto (1721; Madrid, Pal. Arzobisp.) and a St Barbara (1723; Madrid, Mus. Lázaro Galdiano) reveal Ardemans as a talented painter working in the tradition of Francisco Rizi, Juan Carreño de Miranda and Francisco de Herrera the younger, and partially influenced by Luca Giordano. His debt to Coello is apparent in a ceiling fresco attributed to him in the Capilla del Cristo de los Dolores of the Venerable Orden Tercera de San Francisco, Madrid, which shows St Francis riding in a chariot of fire with figures watching from a balcony. Also attributed to Ardemans is the portrait of Pedro Atanasio Bocanegra (c. 1689; Granada, Pal. Arzobisp.)

As an architect, Ardemans belongs to a period of transition, continuing into the 18th century the Baroque tradition of the Madrid school. He worked in Granada (...

Article

François Quiviger

(b Faenza, c. 1525; d Faenza, April 1609).

Italian painter and writer. He probably began his apprenticeship at Faenza and at the beginning of the 1550s settled in Rome, where he worked as a copyist of ancient and modern works. Around 1556 he made a series of journeys across Italy before settling in Faenza in 1564, where he took orders. Of his artistic works, which he himself held in low esteem, we know only an Ascension of the Virgin (Faenza, Pin. Com.) and a few leaves from an album of drawings, dating from the 1550s, which show Raphael’s Logge. His most important contribution to the history of art is his treatise entitled De’ veri precetti della pittura (1587).

With this book Armenini wished to revive painting, which he felt had declined. He attributed its downfall to three main causes: the indifference of the great masters of the early 16th century to teaching, the lack of artists of sufficient stature to succeed them and a general depreciation of the art of painting. The ...

Article

Shannen Hill

Apartheid, an Afrikaans word meaning ‘separateness’, was a system of racial segregation in South Africa that curtailed the economic, political, and social rights of black, coloured, and Indian people. Enforced through the legislation of the National Party, apartheid was the rule of the land between 1948 and 1994. Apartheid affected art and art-making in three primary areas: expressions of nationalism; limited access to education and commercial art markets for black, coloured, and Indian artists; and articulations of political resistance to this system of governance.

Although apartheid is equated with the 20th century, its notions of segregation predate this period. As descendants of Dutch settlers who first settled in southern Africa in 1651, Afrikaners were long at odds with people indigenous to this region and with British and German imperialists who sought to colonize it in the 19th century. In Afrikaner lore, the Great Trek (1835–52) represents the spirit of struggle to claim a land in the name of God. The pilgrimage was driven by a desire both to civilize a so-called heathen place through the introduction of Christianity and to establish a republic free of English intrusion in the heartland. This spirit is embodied by Pioneers (...

Article

Sophie Page

Astrology is the art of predicting events on earth as well as human character and disposition from the movements of the planets and fixed stars. Medieval astrology encompassed both general concepts of celestial influence, and the technical art of making predictions with horoscopes, symbolic maps of the heavens at particular moments and places constructed from astronomical information. The scientific foundations of the art were developed in ancient Greece, largely lost in early medieval Europe and recovered by the Latin West from Arabic sources in the 12th and 13th centuries. Late medieval astrological images were successfully Christianized and were adapted to particular contexts, acquired local meanings and changed over time.

Astrology developed into a scientific branch of learning in ancient Greece, but because of the opposition of the Church Fathers it was transmitted to early medieval Europe in only fragmentary form in technically unsophisticated textbooks and popular divinatory genres. Literary and scientific texts provided more general ideas about the nature and attributes of the planets which were influential on later iconography. The first significant astrological images appear in 11th-century illustrated astronomical texts (e.g. London, BL, Cotton MS. Tiberius BV), which were acquired and produced by monasteries to aid with time-keeping and the construction of the Christian calendar....

Article

Isabel Mateo Gómez

(b ?Toledo; d 1595).

Spanish painter, miniaturist, sculptor, architect and writer. He belongs to the Toledan school of the second half of the 16th century. The son of the painter Lorenzo de Ávila, he developed a Mannerist style that is smooth and delicate and derives from his father’s and from that of Juan Correa de Vivar and of Francisco Comontes (d 1565). He worked as painter to Toledo Cathedral from 1565 to 1581 and was painter (Pintor del Rey) to Philip II from 1583. He acted frequently as a valuer for the work of other artists.

Between 1563 and 1564, in collaboration with Luis de Velasco, Hernando de Ávila painted the retable of the church of Miraflores (Madrid Province) with the Life of Christ and the Life of the Virgin (untraced); these are probably among his earliest works. He was commissioned to paint the retables of St John the Baptist and the ...

Article

Ruth Rosengarten

(b Vila Nova de Gaia, Jan 17, 1923; d 2002).

Portuguese painter, graphic artist, critic and art administrator . In 1947 he was a founder-member of the Grupo Surrealista de Lisboa, with which he exhibited in 1949. By 1952 he was one of the few remaining members of the original group still involved in Surrealism. That year he held a large exhibition with two other artists, showing Occultations, photographs in which parts of the images were masked by overpainting. At the time he was more interested in the process of image-making, in the unconscious genesis of images and their internal rhythms, than in the result as an aesthetic object. From the mid-1950s, Azevedo’s paintings were almost entirely abstract and gestural, with greater overt affinities to lyrical abstraction than to automatism, for example Painting (1961; Lisbon, Mus. Gulbenkian). While in smaller works he often returned to the Surrealist use of collaged photographs introducing an element of shock or surprise, in his paintings there is an overriding interest in morphological dissolution and mutation, which remains lyrical rather than violent....

Article

(b Paris, 1724; d Paris, April 13, 1806).

French painter, writer and administrator . A pupil of Jean-Baptiste Pierre, he was approved (agréé) by the Académie Royale in Paris in 1750 and received (reçu) as a painter of flowers in 1752 on presentation of a Portrait of the King in a Medallion Surrounded by a Garland of Flowers and Attributes of the Arts (untraced). He was essentially a flower and animal painter; as a successor to Jean-Baptiste Oudry he played a key part in the continuation of a precise and polished type of still-life painting. Yet Bachelier also had pretensions towards becoming a history painter, a status he achieved officially in 1763 when he was admitted to the category of history painters at the Académie on the strength of his Death of Abel (Auxerre, Mus. A. & Hist.), for which he substituted a Roman Charity (Paris, Ecole N. Sup. B.-A.) in 1764.

Bachelier exhibited regularly at the Salon from ...

Article

Maryvelma O’Neil

(b Rome, c. 1566; d Dec 30, 1643).

Italian painter, draughtsman and writer . He executed canvases and frescoes of religious and mythological subjects, and portraits. He was given important commissions by popes and aristocrats and sold his works to patrons in Italy and abroad. Baglione’s arguably greater fame as a writer derives from Le nove chiese di Roma (1639) and especially from his Vite de’ pittori, scultori, architetti (1642), containing biographies of more than 200 artists who worked in Rome between 1572 and 1642.

Although born in Rome, where he spent most of his life, Baglione claimed descent from a noble Perugian family. His only acknowledged training (in the autobiography appended to Le vite, 1642) was an apprenticeship with Francesco Morelli, a little-known Florentine painter in Rome. However, drawings for works from the late 1580s and 1590s (such as the Finding of Moses, the Denial of St Peter and the Arrest of Christ...

Article

Éva Bajkay

(b Budapest, Oct 14, 1914; d Budapest, May 3, 1986).

Hungarian painter, printmaker, critic and stage designer . He studied at the School of Applied Art, Budapest (1930–34). Bálint went to Paris for a short time and then attended János Vaszary and Vilmos Aba-Novák’s private school in Budapest, where he met his future brother-in-law Lajos Vajda, whose Constructivist–Surrealist style had a great influence on him. They spent their summers together at the Szentendre colony. Béla Czóbel’s lyrical expressive paintings also influenced Bálint’s early work. From 1939 to 1942 he edited the art column of the newspaper Népszava, to which his father had contributed until 1925, and also published his own articles. He destroyed many of his early works after World War II. The persecution of the Jews was the theme of a series of linocuts, By Candlelight (1939–41; see Román, nos 21–4). In 1946 he became a member of the European School in Budapest, and in 1947 he went to Paris and took part in the Exposition Internationale du Surréalisme (Gal. Maeght). Subsequently his work changed, and in his ...

Article

Hugh Belsey

(b East Anglia, 1704; d Norwich, Sept 9, 1767).

English painter and writer . He began his career as a painter of decorative panels, and a number of poor quality overmantels from 1728 onwards survive. About 1738 his brother Robert Bardwell took over the family decorative painting business, which was based at Bungay, Suffolk; by then Bardwell was producing conversation pieces and portraits, perhaps influenced by the Norwich-based portrait painter John Theodore Heins. William Henry, 4th Earl of Rochford, with his Hunter and Groom (1741; Brodick Castle, Strathclyde, NT Scotland) is an example of his naive approach: the doll-like figures inhabit a clear, airless landscape, while the background view of Easton Park, Suffolk, painted with the same degree of clarity as the foreground figures, shows the influence of his early decorative work. In the 1740s and 1750s Bardwell visited London and painted several portraits there. In 1752 and 1753 he journeyed through Yorkshire to Scotland, carrying out a large number of commissions. His ...

Article

Ruth Rosengarten

(Manuel)

(b Coimbra, 1943).

Portuguese painter and critic. After studying medicine at the University of Coimbra, he studied fine art (1963–8) in Lisbon. He spent three years (1971–4) on a scholarship at the Royal College of Art in London. On returning to Portugal, he worked as a critic for the weekly newspaper O sempre fixe.

In the 1970s Batarda’s early conceptual work gave way to a detailed, obsessive and cruelly playful figuration, often in watercolour, with a complex iconography drawing on literary, art-historical and popular sources. The social and political satire of these works has affinities with that in the watercolours of George Grosz and Otto Dix. Intricate images of invented mechanical objects, personages and animals fill up and float against a space at times structured by a geometrical grid. His later black and white paintings maintain the geometric grid and the obsessive quality of the earlier works but dispense with figuration....

Article

Anne van Loo

(b Liège, March 18, 1896; d 1995).

Belgian painter, designer and writer. He was a pupil of the Symbolist painter Jean Delville but started using geometric forms after discovering the work of František Kupka. In 1923 he began to collaborate on the avant-garde journal 7 Arts together with Pierre-Louis Flouquet (1900–67) and Karel Maes (1900–74). Also in 1923 he married the dancer Akarova (b 1904) who inspired his ‘Kaloprosopies’ (1925), an album of nine woodcuts, and for whom he designed costumes and stage sets. At the same time he embarked on the design of functional furniture, first in traditional materials and then in metal tubing (1930) and polychrome, cellulose-based lacquer. He opened his own decorating business in Brussels (1930–70) and showed his ‘Standax’ furniture, which could be assembled and dismantled, at the Exposition Internationale des Arts et Techniques dans la Vie Moderne (1937) in Paris. Baugniet was a promoter of the ...

Article

Angela Schneider

(b Stuttgart, Jan 22, 1889; d Stuttgart, Aug 31, 1955).

German painter and writer. After an apprenticeship as a painter and decorator (1905–7), which was the initial stimulus of his great interest in the technical potential of painting materials, he studied at the Kunstakademie, Stuttgart. Of his teachers Adolf Hölzel was the most influential. His friends included Otto Mayer-Amden and Oskar Schlemmer, and he worked with Schlemmer and others on a pictorial wall frieze for the Cologne Werkbund exhibition in 1914 (see 1989 exh. cat., p. 19), through which he became known to a wider circle. After serving as a soldier in the Balkans and the Caucasus during World War I, he returned to Stuttgart where he worked as a typesetter, a stage designer and an architectural perspective artist.

Baumeister’s first successes were in the 1920s. French critics viewed his Wall Pictures (1920–23; e.g. Wall Picture with Metal, oil, gold and pieces of card on canvas, 1923...

Article

M. N. Sokolov

(Mikhailovich)

(b Moscow, June 10, 1925; d Feb 29, 2012).

Russian painter, sculptor, theorist and teacher. He attended the Surikov Institute of Art in Moscow (1942–7), where he completed undergraduate and postgraduate studies; his teachers there were Aristarkh Lentulov, Pavel Kuznetsov and Lev Bruni. He obtained a doctorate in art history and was a specialist in the historiography of Russian art. In 1948 he established an independent studio, which was unique for its time and which provided the base for the New Realist movement, a kind of monumental tachism. Over several years approximately 600 artists and architects passed through the studio. In 1962 he organized one of the first public exhibitions of avant-garde art in Moscow. Displayed at the Central Exhibition Hall (Manezh), it was wildly slandered by the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union, the moment that proved most symptomatic of the end of a period of political thaw. From 1964 artists of the New Realist movement worked at Belyutin’s dacha at Abramtsevo, north of Moscow; unofficial exhibitions of their work were held there annually. In ...

Article

Lenka Bydžovská

(b Velké Lišice, nr Chlumec nad Cidlinou, Jan 22, 1883; d Prague, March 27, 1979).

Czech painter, writer and theorist. In 1902–4 he studied at the Prague School of Applied Art and in 1904–7 at the Academy of Fine Arts. After visiting Dresden, Berlin, Munich and Paris, he returned to Prague and joined Eight, the, which had been set up by his former fellow students; he exhibited at the group’s second show in 1908. His early work was influenced by the ideas of Bohumil Kubišta, with whom he shared a workshop. Although basically an uncomplicated, sensual painter, he attempted to keep well informed about contemporary artistic trends. In 1910–14 he became a fervent devotee of Cubism and, together with Emil Filla, adhered faithfully to the style of Picasso and Braque. He was one of the founders (1911) of the Group of Plastic Artists and contributed theoretical articles to its journal, Umělecký měsíčník. No consistent reconstruction of his paintings before World War I can be made because most of his Cubist works were later destroyed. His process of crystallization in relation to the painting of space culminated in ...