FRA ANGELICO 1387-1455 Italian School of Florence
JAN VAN EYCK (?)-1440(?) Flemish School of Bruges
BEFORE proceeding along the path which Masaccio and Mantegna have struck out, we must pause to consider a painter who, although a contemporary of theirs, belongs more to the past. He was the last inheritor of the Giottesque tradition, and the last of the painters whose work is thoroughly religious.
I invite you to turn aside into a little quiet garden, as it were, secluded within cloister walls, where Fra Angelico, painter and monk, a brother of the black-and- white order of the Dominicans, devoted his life to religious paintings. Choosing, as an example of his work, The Annunciation, I have placed it in comparison with The Virgin and Donor by Jan van Eyck, who shares with his brother Hubert the honor of founding the Flemish School.
One reason for this comparison is that we are trying to gain a bird's-eye view of the story of painting; not allowing ourselves to become absorbed in any one spot to the exclusion of others, but scanning the whole field and noting the great movements as they spring up, now here, now there, sometimes related to one another, some-