Artibus et Historiae no. 37 (XIX), 1998
252 x 232 mm
ISSN 0391-9064
90 EURO
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Contents
JAMES BECK - Connoisseurship: A Lost or a Found Art? The Example of a Michelangelo Attribution: 'The Fifth Avenue Cupid.' (pp. 9—42)

The author, noting that attributional practices and requirements connected with Renaissance sculpture are less refined and less developed than those surrounding painting, has offered a series of steps that can be applied to the activity. He has used as a test of the methodology the so-called Fifth Avenue Cupid, a marble that has been recently re-attributed to Michelangelo, after its location in New York City had been determined. In 1968 Alessandro Parronchi had proposed that it was the work of Michelangelo, although at the time he had not personally seen sculpture, nor knew of its location. Application of the new attributional approach suggest that far from being an autograph Michelangelo, the object is a late nineteenth or early twentieth century forgery.

SIMONA COHEN - Some Aspects of a Michelangelo's Creative Process (pp. 43—63)

The interdisciplinary study of Michelangelo's creative process deviates from art-historical studies of the creative product and those of the artistic process, defined in terms of stylistic or iconographic development, chronology or dating. It examines the dynamic process that constitutes the essence of creative activity by combining the tools and methods of art-historical research with the definitions and approach of cognitive psychological theory and research in creativity in order to identify and interpret cognitive processes exhibited in the formative stages of the Sistine ceiling and the Medici Chapel. Conclusions are based on an objective, methodological study of visual evidence in an art-historical context. Cognitive patterns, preferences for certain formal structures, ways of dealing with conflict and constraint in the artistic process, and other psychological strategies are reconstructed primarily from the artist preparatory sketches. While certain patterns were found to be consistent in Michelangelo's creative process during the period studied, sig­nificant changes reflect the artist's development.

CARLO DEL BRAVO - Filippino e lo Stoicismo (pp. 65—75)
Filippino and the Stoicism
 
In two paintings by Filippino Lippi we read "Sustine et abstine", which is a motto of Epictetus the Stoic. Following this observation, the present essay tries to identify in the corpus of the artist the visual renderings of Stoic tenets such as Providence govern`ing the universe, the protection of daemons, divination, the greatness of the human mind, theoretical ethics, not to mention the Epictetus' own persuasion that endurance and abstinence can free the soul from phantasms and ensure peace and good­ness. In Filippino's paintings equanimity seems to be formally expressed by exact, and imagination by altered, proportions; the grottesche seem to express the other people's phantasms.
WŁADYSŁAWA JAWORSKA - "Christ in the Garden of Olive-Trees" by Gauguin. The Sacred or the Profane? (pp. 77—102)

Gauguin's famous picture Christ in the Garden of Olive-Trees was painted in Brittany in 1889. Christ's features do not any doubt, that painting is the artist's self-portrait in which he wanted to express his state of prostration and despair. Simultaneously with his bitter feeling that nobody understood him, grew his con­viction that he was the "Saviour" of modern painting, one who could find the source and truth of art on an island in Oceania where lived good and happy people unaffected by European civ­ilization. He wanted to go there at any price, but he was penni­less and without prospects for help. In his picture he identified his life and suffering with the Passion of Christ. The composition is conceived as a diptych divided by a tree trunk. The half figure presentation of Christ pushed in the left corner of the painting seems to intensify his humiliation and grief. The figure of Christ is in a folk-naive style and the unnatural red of his hair symbolizes the Saviour's human suffering. The landscape is mysterious and enigmatic. While being fairly true to the description in the Gospel, it portrays neither the environs outside the walls of the holy city of Jerusalem nor the Breton landscape. It is identical with the landscape of an island of Polynesia with its fairyland colour and peaceful atmosphere. However, Gauguin has painted Christ in Britanny in such a setting before his trip to Tahiti. This was only his genial preconception and vision of a lost paradise, which, as he then believed, he was not destined to reach. In this way, the Breton Christ, depicted in the imaginary Tahitian setting, as Christ in the Garden of Olive-Trees, became a mystical and artistic con­nection between the two worlds created by Gauguin - the Breton and Tahitian mythologies.

XAVIER DERYNG - Les variations Popoffsky (Strindberg - Reja - Biegas) (pp. 103—123)
 Variations of the Theme of Popoffsky (Strindberg - Reja - Biegas)
 
Bolesław Biegas's sculpture Sphinx (1902) is on display in the Musée d'Orsay, Room No. 60, exactly opposite August Strindberg's Vague VII (1901) (Wave). There is a perceivable link between the two works both of which were affected by Popoffsky's (alias Stanisław Przybyszewski) spiritual aura. That was the same mood that was torturing Strindberg during the crisis of Inferno and that inspired Biegas to execute his relief Chopin at the beginning of 1902, just after the artist had settled in Paris. In fact, during his studies at the Academy of Fine Arts, Biegas, like Wojciech Weiss, was impressed by the thesis of the Aesthetists as it was manifested by Przybyszewski. Biegas, however, was recognized by the circle of the Symbolists in Paris, especially by Charles Morice and Andre Fontains, who were very close to Paul Gauguin and A. Rodin, as well as by Marcel Reja, who was an admirer of Strindberg's literary works and also a defender of Edvard Munch on the artistic scene of Paris. In 1902 the journal "La Plume" dedicated a special issue to Bolesław Biegas in which Marcel Reja emphasized the power of expression of his Chopin, which won the approval of Parisian art critics.
 
ANDRZEJ PIEŃKOS - L'Eschatologie et l'art non-symboliste de Ferdinand Hodler (pp. 125—152)

Eschatology in the Ferdinand Hodler Non-Symbolic Art

 

Ferdinand Hodler has generally been regarded as one of the most eminent representatives of the symbolism in European art. And this is mainly why these works of his which couldn't fit such a qualification have been passed over in silence or treated as the casual ones. The place the standard modern art history has put Hodler in makes very difficult to accept to accept his representations of death and to acknowledge, first of all, the series of works showing the agonies of Augustine Dupin (1909) and Valentine Gode-Darel (1914—1915), two women who played the important role in the painter's life. The art history underestimates these works because of their unusual way of grasping the theme itself too, the manner which breaks the generally accepted formulas of the time. Both series have equivalents neither in representing the ultimate situations nor in symbolic thinking and the even more progressive trends in art circa 1900.

AVIGDOR W. G. POSEQ - Soutine's "Haptic Perspective" (pp. 153—161)

Because so little has been written about Soutin's methods of spatial representation one gets the impression that he was completely ignorant of the principles of perspective. However biographical evidence as well as the paintings themselves show that this was not the case. Although he was familiar with the rules of conventional perspective he developed an individualistic mode of pictorial representation which being based on the empathetic experience of reality rather than on its visual perception may be defined as "Haptic Perspective".

JOHN G. HATCH - Fatum as Theme and Method in the work of Francis Bacon (pp. 163—175)

The paintings of Francis Bacon embody his passionate and determined challenge of "fate" in its various guises. His marked fascination for Aeschylus' Orestes or Christ rests with their having questioned fate, while the Eumenides or Furies of Greek mythology, first presented in Three Studies for Figures at the Base of Crucifixion (1944), became a leitmotif in the English painter's work. Even the manner in which Bacon approached the canvas was described by him as a struggle between the artist's will and the "inevitability" of the paint. But what is fate for many of us Bacon preferred to call chance or accident. The distinction for him rested with the artificial explanations or beliefs we impose upon life. Bacon attacked these relentlessly because they engender an unquestioning and destructive acceptance of the vagaries of life, or, simply put, they result in a fantastic approach to life.

ZYGMUNT ŚWIECHOWSKI - L'architecture préromane et romane en Pologne apres les explorations archéologiques récentes (pp. 177—199)
Pre-Romanesque and Romanesque Architecture in Poland in the Light of the Latest Archeological Investigations
 
In the last decades the archeological excavations brought many conclusions concerning Early Polish Architecture. The revision of the opinions on form and chronology of many already known objects was made and, at the same time, many previously unknown monuments were discovered. The results of the excavations on the Wawel Hill in Cracow are especially important. There, since 1970, six unknown pre-Romanesque sacral buildings were discovered with the remnants of he earliest Cathedral among them as well as three rotundas. Further central buildings were dis­covered at Zawichost, Łękno and Przemyśl. From the number of residences dating to the period of formation of the Polish State in the 10th and 11th centuries it is necessary to subtract the evidently later palatia at Wislica. Instead, their number will probably increase with the finding out a big building discovered within the ramparts of the castle at Kałdus in Pomerania. Essential conclusions are due to the excavations in the Benedictine Abbeys. The church at Mogilno turned out to be an exact replica of the Benedictine churches in the Liège diocese. The excavations usually planned on a large scale visualized that the stone architecture within the fortified princely residences and connected with them agglomerations of urban character was erected in the context of settlements. While wooden- end-earthen fortifications and dwelling houses built in a similar way continued traditions of local, pre-Christian Building, the stone ones, both ecclesiastical and residential, were the work of stonemasons coming from the West.