All the Paintings of Piero Della Francesca

All the Paintings of Piero Della Francesca

All the Paintings of Piero Della Francesca

All the Paintings of Piero Della Francesca

Excerpt

Je hais le mouvement qui deplace les lignes Et jamais je ne pleur et jamais je ne ris.

BAUDELAIRE

NO other artist's fortunes illustrate the changes in taste better than those of Piero della Francesca, a true "monarch of painting in his time," later ignored for centuries, and then gradually and inexorably restored to his rightful greatness. Only a hundred years ago the critic Burckhardt, in his Cicerone , put Piero among the followers of Squarcione: Cavalcaselle, though he was the first to understand him, called him a forerunner of Ghirlandaio, if only for his manner of projecting shadows. It has been said many times, and rightly so, that the artists rather than the critics contributed to his resurrection, and in fact no other classical painter could have contributed more than Piero to the avant-garde tendencies of the end of the last century and the beginning of this one, when rigidly formal, rather than romantic, experiences were sought.

Now that his reputation and prestige have been firmly re-established, the critics have been interested in defining-- among other things--the relationship between the master's artistic and theoretical activities and the chronological order of his works. By these means they hope to trace the history of his complex artistic development.

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