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By Keith Christiansen

Many black and white and colour images of work. comprises heritage and outlines.

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The nature and the development of our ideas have changed since the Revolution, and we shall not return, I hope, to the false delicacy which had for so long constrained genius. As for myself, I recognize no honour higher than that of having the public as judge. I fear from it neither passion nor partiality: the rewards it bestows are voluntary gifts, witnesses its praise is the free expression of the experiences; such recompense is, without doubt, equal to that of academic times. The considerations I have proposed as to the custom of public exhibition, of which I shall have been the first to give to its taste for the arts: enjoyment it me by the wish to obtain for the artists, dedicated to painting, a means by which they might be repaid for the sacrifice of their time and money, and to insure to them a resource against poverty— not seldom their unhappy lot.

The custom of exhibition existed long before this, and was introduced in the last century by Van Dyck: the public came in crowds to admire his work: he gained by this means a considerable fortune. practised in England and tures of the death of General lic is Is this not an idea as just as it is wise, which brings to art the means of existing for itself, of supporting itself by its own resources, thus to enjoy the noble independence suited to genius, without which the fire that inspires it is soon extin- guished?

His renown and his influence on European art were due more to his illustrations of Homer, Aeschylus, Hesiod, and Dante, commissioned by Flaxman chose episodes with a moral and depicted them in line drawings possessing a sentimental refinement and a decorative abstract quality that had great appeal. The Iliad, the Odyssey, and Aeschylus, published in Rome in 1793 and in London in 1795, had German editions in 1802 and 1804 and were widely circulated in Europe, as were the Dante illustrations published in Rome in 1802 and in London in 1807.

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A Caravaggio Rediscovered The Lute Player by Keith Christiansen


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