WE have come to the end of the study that we set out to make. Step by step, we have marked the evolution of modern painting, from the Byzantine traditions which prevailed before Cimabue down to the latest possibilities introduced by the pointilliste method of Monet.
We have made the acquaintance of a majority of the greatest artists; of those who, being themselves men of originality, exercised a wide influence on others. In studying their points of view, and their methods of rendering what they saw in the way they felt it, we have gained a general insight into pictorial methods and motives, that will enable us to appreciate the infinite varieties of the same as they appear in other artists.
Turn by turn, we have visited different countries, according as the art of painting flourished in them simultaneously, or as it declined in one and reappeared with vigor in another. And, doing so, we have found that the manifestations of art have varied in response to the racial and temporary conditions of each country; and, while we have not attempted to explain genius as the result of these, we have examined how they influenced it.
We have seen how one impulse of movement followed another; all of them involving truth, but none monopolizing the whole truth; in fact, that the manifestations and possibilities of painting are wide and various as