Michael Bryan.

Bryan's dictionary of painters and engravers (Volume 1) online

. (page 44 of 98)
Online LibraryMichael BryanBryan's dictionary of painters and engravers (Volume 1) → online text (page 44 of 98)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


in 1769, and died there in 1836. He was a pupil
of D. Berger. His best works are after Cranach,
Ramberg, and Dahling.

BOLTON, JAMES, a pupil of B. Clowes, the
engraver, was known as a flower painter in water
colour in the North of England. He died near
Halifax in 1799 (Redgrave).

BOLTRAFFIO. See BELTRAFFIO.

BOLZETTA. See CADORIN, MATTHIAS.

BOM, PIETER, a Flemish artist, who painted
landscapes in distemper, was born at Antwerp in
1530. He was admitted into the Guild of St. Luke
in 1560, and became dean of that corporation in
1599. The date of his death is not known.

BOMBELLI, SEBARTIANO, was born at Udine in
1635, and was a schohar of Guercino. He after-
wards went to Venice, where he studied and copied
the works of Paolo Veronese and Tintoretto with
so much success that some of his reproductions are
scarcely to be distinguished from the originals. He
painted historical pieces in the early part of his life,
but from the lucrative prospect opened to him in
portraits, he was induced to devote himself to that
branch of the art, although he had already painted
some historical pictures of great promise. He
visited most of the courts of Germany, where he
painted portraits with success. Boschini says that
for portraits he could not be surpassed. He died
in 1724. The Belvedere at Vienna possesses a
portrait of Francesco de' Medici by him, and his
own portrait by himself is in the Uffizi, Florence.

BONACINA, GIOVANNI BATTISTA, an engraver,
was born at Milan about the year 1620. He engraved
some plates of portraits and historical subjects in
a neat style, though rather dry and stiif . They are
executed entirely with the graver, and he seems to
have imitated, without, however, equalling, the style
of Cornells Bloemaert. We have the following by
him :

PORTRAITS.
Pope Clement IX.
Guido Visconti.
Hermes Visconti.
Giovanni Battista Conte Truchi.

SUBJECTS.
The Alliance of Jacob and Laban ; after Pictro da Cor-

tona.
St. Martin kneeling before the Virgin and Infant Jesus ;

after the snme.
The Holy Family, with St. Catharine and St. John ;

after A ndrea del Sarto.

BONASIA, BARTOLOMMEO, is the author of a
Pieta in the Modena Gallery, signed ' Hoc opus
pinxit Bartholomeus de Bonasciis,' and dated 1485.

BONASONE, GIULIO, (or BUONASONE,) an Italian
painter and very distinguished engraver, was born
at Bologna about the year 1498, and worked from
1521 to 1574. He studied painting under Lorenzo
Sabbatini, and there are some of his works in
the churches at Bologna ; particularly in San
Stefano is a fine picture by him of the ' Souls
in Purgatory.' He is, however, much more cele-
brated as an engraver than a painter, and in this
branch of art had the advantage of being educated
by Marc- Antonio. Bonasone has engraved after the
works of Michelangelo, Raphael, Giulio Romano,
Parmigiano, and others, and several plates from
his own designs. His prints, with a very few
exceptions, are entirely worked with the graver,
and although his style is neither so clear, firm, nor



PAINTERS AND ENGRAVERS.



masterly as that of his admirable instructor, nor
his outline so correct and pure, his works are exe-
cuted with great facility and considerable elegance,
and they are held in no small degree of estimation
by the judicious collector. We admire in his prints
an excellent distribution of the lights and shadows,
and a breadth in the masses that is very masterly.
His plates are generally marked with his name,
either at length or contracted, as Julio Brmoso,
and sometimes with the initials B., I. ., or

t_-XX f

I. B. F., and also with the cipher J TD . His

work is considerable ; the following is a list of his
plates most worthy of notice :

PORTRAITS.

The Pope Marcellus II., without the name ; scarce.
Pbilippus Hispaniarum princeps, Caroli V. filius : Julio

B, F.

Cardinal Pietro Bembo. t. 77 ; after Titian.
Raphael d'Urbino, with and without the name.
Michelangelo Buonarroti; circular.
Francisci Fieri Antwerpiani inter Belgos pictoris.
Joannes Bernardinus Bonifacius, &c. M.DJtLvni.
Cardinal Ardingbello ; after a monument.

SUBJECTS OF SACRED HISTORY.
Adam and Eve ; after his oicn design.
Adam tilling the Earth and Eve spinning ; the same.
The Holy Family; J. Bonasone, Inventore.
The Nativity ; the same.
The Resurrection ; the same.
Twenty-nine of the Passion; entitled Passio Domim

nri. Jesu Christi ; Julii Bonasonii opus, &c.
Thirteen of the Life of the Virgin ; marked with a B.

and some of them with a D.
Adam and Eve driven from Paradise ; after Amict

Aspertino.
St. George ; after Giulio Romano ; with the names ol

the artists.

The Holy Family ; after the same.
The Nativity, a grand composition ; attributed to Giulio

Romano.
The last Judgment ; after Jfich?t<in</efa ; inscribed Julius

Bonasonius Bonone proprid Jfichaelis Angeli, &c.
Solomon, David, and Jesse, part of the Sistine Ohapel ;

after the same ; Julio Bmasone imitando, &c.
The Creation of Eve ; after the same ; with his name.
Judith with her Servant coming out of the Tent of

Holofernes ; after the same.

The Miracle of the Manna, and Moses striking the Rock,
on the same plate ; F. Parmesanino inv. ; Julio Bo-
lognesefec. 1546.

Another Nativity ; after Parmigiano.
St. Joachim and St. Anne, presenting the Virgin Mary

to the High Priest ; after the same.
The Virgin Mary and Infant Jesus in the Air ; after the

same, F. P. I. V. ; J. Bonasonis imitando, &c.
St. Peter and St. John healing the Lame ; after Perino

del Vaga.

St. Paul preaching ; oval ; after the same.
Christ seated on the Tomb, supported by two Angels,
with the Virgin Mary and St. John ; after Polidoro B.
1532.
The Nativity of John the Baptist; after Pontormo ;

Jacobus Florentinus Inventor, Julio B. F.
St. Cecilia ; after Raphael.
Christ meeting St. Peter ; after the same.
St. Peter made Head of the Church ; after the same.
Noah coming out of the Ark ; after the same.
Joseph sold by his Brethren ; after the same.
The Cup found in Benjamin's Sack ; with the names of

Raphael and Bonasone.
The dead Christ on the Tomb, with the Virgin Mary ;

after Raphael, without the name of the engraver.
The Entombment of Christ; after Titian, with the
names of the painter and engraver. 1563.

SUBJECTS OF PROFANE HISTORY.

Alexander with Bucephalus and Roxana ; circular ;
Julio Bonasone, inventore.



The Triumph of Cnpid and Psyche ; Julio Bonasone,
inventore

Apollo in his Car, with the Hours, and Time walking on
Crutches before ; Z. V. B. Julio Bonasone, inventore

Scipio wounded, retiring from the Battle ; I. V. Bonaio
imitando, &c,

Clelia, with one of her companions, on Horseback escap-
ing from the Camp of Porsena ; /. V. Bonaso imitando
&c.

Twenty Of the History of Juno, with Italian verses ;
after his own designs

The Fall of Phaeton ; after Michelangelo.

Three Female Figures with Veils ; after the same.

The Shipwreck of J5neas ; after Parmigiano.

Niobe and her Children ; after Perino del Vaga. 1541.

The Roman Charity ; a frieze ; after Polidoro.

Mars and Venus ; after Primaticcio.

Achilles dragging tfie Body of Hector ; after the same.

The Taking of Troy ; after the same; two sheets. 1545
Bonasonis F.

The Rape of Europa ; after Raphael; with the names.

Venus attended by the Graces ; after the same.

The Birth of Adonis ; dated 1586.

There are also several plates of free subjects and
statues, bassi-rilievi, and architectural subjects, de-
scribed in Heinecken's ' Dictionnaire des Artistes.'
Cumberland's Catalogue of the prints of Giulio
Bonasone is the most accurate that has hitherto
been published.

BONATO, PIETRO, a pupil of Volpato, was born
at Bassano in 1765, and died in 1820. He engraved
plates after Reni, Correggio, &c.

BONATTI, GIOVANXI, was bom at Ferrara in
1635, and having shown an early inclination for
the art, he was, at the age of fourteen, taken into
the protection of Cardinal Carlo Pio, who placed
him in the school of Guercino, under whom he
studied three years. He afterwards went to Rome,
where lie became a scholar of Pietro Francesco
Mnla. He was employed in several works for the
public edifices. In the gallery of the Capitol are
two pictures by this master, one representing
Rinaldo and Armida, the other Sisera and Jael.
There are other works by him in the Chiesa Nuova,
and Santa Croce in Gerusalemme at Rome, where
he died in 1681. In the Uffizi is a 'St. Charles
Borromeo ' by him.

BONAVERA, DOMENICO MARIA, an Italian en-
graver, was born at Bologna about the year 1650.



He learned the art of engraving from his uncle
Domenico Maria Canuti. His plates are chiefly
etched, and finished with the dry point. He en-
graved eighteen plates, from the designs of Titian,
for a book of anatomy for the use of students.
He used a cipher similar to that of Dominique

Barriere and of Domenico Bettini, jj/. We have
the following prints by him :

The Baptism of our Saviour by St. John ; after Albani ;
D. Bonavera sc. (one of his best works).

St. Anne teaching the Virgin Mary to read ; after Dom.
Maria Canuti ; Dom. Bonavera fee.

St. Theresa with the Infant Jesus ; after the same.

The Martyrdom of St. Christiana ; after the same (one
of his best works).

St. John preaching ; after Lodov. Carracci ; D. Bonavera.

Lot and his Daughters ; after Ann. Carracci; D. Bona-
vera.

The Cupola at Parma, the Assumption ; after Correggio ;
Domenico Bonavera sc. 1697.

BONAY, FRANCISCO, a Spanish landscape painter,
was born at Valencia in 1655, and died in Portugal
in 1730. His landscapes are ornamented with
buildings after Perelle, and cattle in the manner
of Berchem. His chief work is a landscape in
the sacristy of the Carmelites at Valencia.

161



A BIOGKAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF



BONCONSIQLIO. See BUONCONSIGLIO.

BONCUORE, GIOVANNI BATTISTA, was born at
Abruzzo in 1643, and studied at Rome under Fran-
cesco Albani. He painted historical subjects with
considerable success, and his pictures are distin-
guished by great force and vigour of effect, though
sometimes heavy in the execution. One of his most
esteemed works is an altar-piece in the Chiesa degli
Orfanelli, at Rome. He died in 1699.

BOND, JOHN DANIEL, a landscape painter of
Birmingham, flourished in the latter half of the
eighteenth century. He died near Birmingham in
1803, aged 78.

BOND, R. SEBASTIAN, landscape painter, was
born at Liverpool in 1808. He was educated in
his native city, and practised there for the greater
part of his life, settling finally at Bettws-y-Coed.
He occasionally exhibited in London between 1846
and 1872, but most of his works appeared at
Liverpool and in the midland counties. He died
in February 1886.

BOND, WILLIAM, was one of the engravers of
the portraits of Sir Joshua Reynolds. His talents
are well exemplified in the portraits which he
executed for Yorke's ' Royal Tribes of Wales,' pub-
lished in 1799. It is believed that he died early in
the nineteenth century. He was Governor of the
Society of Engravers, founded in 1803.

BONDONE, GIOTTO DI, commonly called GIOTTO,
the founder of the noble line of Italian painters,
was the son of a peasant named Bomlone, and
was born in the little village of Colle in the
commune of Vespignano, not many miles to
the north of Florence. Vasari gives 1276 as
the date of his birth, but Antonio Pucci in his
' Centiloquio ' speaks of him as being seventy years
of age at the time of his death in 1336, which
would make the date of his birth 1266. This
latter date is accepted, not without reason, by
several modern writers, who prefer to trust certain
internal evidence regarding the master's life and
works, rather than the oft-times uncertain testi-
mony of Vasari. The pretty story, also, that tells
how the famous painter Cimabue first saw the
shepherd boy Giotto drawing one of his sheep upon
the smooth surface of a rock, is relegated by modern
authorities to the realms of fable. It was Ghiberti
who first told this pastoral anecdote in his ' Com-
mentario,' and it was merely repeated by Vaeari ;
but an anonymous commentator on the ' Divina
Commedia,' who wrote at the end of the fourteenth
century, gives a different account. This writer
states that Giotto was apprenticed by his father
to a dealer in wool, but that on the way to his
work he always went into Cimabue's bottega, and
finally, being missed for some time by his master,
he was found there painting busily, whereupon,
following the advice of Cimabue, his father
took him from the wool trade and placed him
as a pupil with Cimabue. Whatever truth there
may be in this or other legends touching Giotto's
boyhood, it is fairly probable that he did study, for
a time at least, under the guidance of Cimabue,
although it is the opinion of some modern critics
that much of his earlier training was acquired at
Rome and even at Assisi. In the absence, how-
ever, of any recognizable work belonging to this
more youthful period of his career, all set opinions
regarding his early artistic education must remain
more or less matters of conjecture. Whoever may
have been his first masters, he soon began to follow
a far greater teacher than any of these, no other,

162



indeed, than Nature herself, who had been so long
neglected for Tradition. Traditionary types soon
failed to satisfy the daring young innovator. His
genius led him at an early stage to look at nature
for and by himself, and in so doing he effected a
total change in the spirit of the painting of his
time a change similar to, although in its after-
workings far more complete than that which had
been already initiated in the field of sculpture,
some years before, by the Pisani. It is more than
probable that Giotto himself owed no small debt
to the example of these great sculptors and more
especially to that of his contemporary Giovanni
in the right direction of his own ideals, and even in
the formation of his style and taste. The influence
of Giovanni's art upon Giotto is distinctly to be
traced in many of the latter's works, and there is
every reason to believe that the sculptor's power-
ful personality acted as an incentive of no small
account in first pointing out to the young painter
the right road to the free expression of his latent
artistic impulses. Once upon the right path, Giotto's
great powers of naturalistic expression evidently
developed themselves with wonderful rapidity,
enabling him to break, almost at once, the bonds of
tradition which bound so many lesser men, and to
open the way to an entirely new and original
school of painting. In estimating the value of his
work we must therefore regard not only that which
he individually accomplished, but also the influence
of his example upon those who came after him.
He led the way, and all the great naturalistic
artists of the next two centuries but followed in
the path that he pointed out. In his unswerving
fidelity to the naturalistic ideal, he soon surpassed
those very Pisan stone-cutters from whom he had
probably received his first inspiration, and so
powerful and lasting was the influence which he
left behind him, that it was directly felt by
sculptors, as well as painters, long after the school
of Pisa had died a natural death.

As has already been said, it is difficult to trace
satisfactorily Giotto's development, so many of his
early works having perished. Some of his earliest,
according to Vasari, were undertaken for the Badia
of Florence, and he mentions especially an 'An-
nunciation,' wherein fear and astonishment were
most wonderfully depicted on the face of the
Virgin. All the paintings in the Badia have been
destroyed, although the ' Annunciation ' that called
forth Vasari's admiration is supposed by some to
have been a work by Lorenzo Camaldolense, now
in the Accademia at Florence. Other paintings,
in Arezzo, have shared a fate similar to that of
those in the Badia.

Opinions now differ widely regarding the
chronological sequence of Giotto's remaining
works, recent criticism having considerably altered
the generally accepted arrangement of the master's
paintings. The prevalent opinion, still upheld by
the great majority of critics, which places the
famous frescoes of the Life of St. Francis, in the
upper church at Assisi, first on the list, appears to
be based on tradition rather than upon any critical
study of the works themselves, and it is undoubt-
edly to Rome that we must look for the oldest of
the master's recognizable productions. We know
for a fact that Giotto was present in the latter city
in 1298, that he executed in that year, for his
patron Cardinal Stefaneschi, nephew of Boniface
VIII., the famous mosaic of the '' Navicella," and
that he also finished, at about this same period, at



GIOTTO DI BON DONE



GIOTTO




THE FINAL JUDGMENT



[Arena Chapel, Padua



w
o

Q

X ^

o . ^
^ c

S " 2
o o

H

O

O




o



CA;

U



D
W

H



PAINTERS AND ENGRAVERS.



the order of the same prelate, a large high-altar-
piece for the church of St. Peter. But one of these
works can be rightly said to have been preserved
to us. The 'Navicella' an allegorical represent-
ation of the Catholic Church, wherein the Apostles
are seen in a boat, with Christ saving St. Peter from
the waves although still shown to the public in
the portico of St. Peter's, may safely be said no
longer to retain more than a reminiscence of
Giotto's original composition, so thoroughly and
frequently has it been restored. The altar-piece,
however, still remains almost complete in its
original parts, and in a comparatively exceptional
state of preservation. It was removed from its
ancient honourable position at the time of the
destruction of the old basilica of St. Peter, and
now hangs dismembered on the walls of the
Sagrestia dei Canonici, in the new church. Before
this great work, in all probability the earliest of
the master's authenticated paintings, Giotto's real
position in the history of art becomes at once
apparent. Were this altar-piece alone preserved
to us of all his creations, it would still be amply
sufficient to uphold for him the proud title of the
founder of Modern Painting. The most casual
comparison with the work of his predecessors is
sufficiently convincing to make clear at once the
great transformation which the artist here succeeded
in effecting. His figures are dignified and also
graceful, at times reminiscent of the antique, but
never a mere copy of it ; the folds of his draperies
are at once simple and flowing, clearly showing
the contours of the body, in utter contrast to the
minute and oft-times meaningless lining of the
Byzantine artists; his representation of movement
is free and unconstrained. It is precisely in his
development of these last-named qualities, and
especially in that of Form, that Giotto achieved
his greatest artistic triumphs. So important a
factor in his art is this same quality of Form, that
it is almost solely upon a study of this distinctive
feature that Giotto's latest critics have based their
chronological arrangement of his works. Again,
in the matter of colour, he has placed before us
something differing entirely from the painting of
his time. But what is equally in contrast to the
work of his Italian and Byzantine predecessors, is
the individual expression of his figures and it
was doubtless this which most strongly impressed
his contemporaries. "The persons in grief look
melancholy," exclaims an old writer in speaking
of his work, " and those who are joyous look gay."
Such naturalism must indeed have been irresistible
in its effects on a public so long accustomed to the
rigid conformity of Byzantine types.

Of the other works which Giotto is known to
have executed in Rome, none now remain except
the fragment of a fresco in San Giovanni in
Laterano, representing Boniface VIII. in a balcony,
announcing the opening of the Jubilee of 1300.

We are in ignorance as to when Giotto under-
took his first commission at Assisi, but of the long
series of frescoes which he has left in the church
of San Francesco in that town, the earliest, repre-
senting scenes from the Lives of the Virgin and of
Christ, in the right transept of the Lower Church,
appear, in point of style, to belong to a period
closely following on the completion of the
Stefaneschi altar-piece, with which they have
much in common. In charm of colour and grace
of expression, these works are to be classed among
the most pleasing of all the master's creations
M 2



while in depth of feeling and dignity of conception,
the last fresco of the series, representing the Cruci-
fixion, remains among the masterpieces of early
Italian painting, far surpassing the later and
more realistic treatment of the same subject in
the Pacluan Arena. The famous allegories of
'Poverty, Chastity, and Obedience,' and the
' Glorification of St. Francis,' on the central ceiling
of the Lower Church, come next in order, and are
too well known to require special description. It
is sufficient to say that they show a marked
technical advance over the master's earlier work,
and in them Giotto has given special prominence
to his sense of decorative effect, entirely disprov-
ing the common assertion that he was lacking in
this latter quality of his art. From these alle-
gories we may pass to the three interesting
frescoes in the right transept, representing certain
miracles of St. Francis works which exhibit a
decided tendency toward a more realistic style of
treatment than is to be found in any of the master's
previous creations. Before leaving the Lower
Church, mention must also be made of the paint-
ings, generally attributed to Buffalmacco and
Taddeo Gaddi, in the Chapel of the Magdalen,
several of which clearly show Giotto's own handi-
work. Two of these, one representing the
Magdalen anointing Christ's feet, the other the
Raising of Lazarus, are especially noticeable for
strong dramatic treatment, and closely foreshadow
the later work at Padua. Others of these frescoes
show the co-operation of assistants, and are un-
equal in merit.

The long series of paintings in the Upper
Church, depicting the principal events of St.
Francis' life, has given rise to endless discussions
among art critics of the past half-century. By the
great majority of writers these frescoes are still
looked upon as the earliest of Giotto's extant
\vnrks an opinion doubtless having rise in the
tradition that Giotto here carried on and com-
pleted ' Cimabue's ' earlier work, and also in great
measure due to the changed appearance given
these frescoes by excessive and total repaint.
Sufficient may still be gathered, however, from
what remains, to clearly prove their real position
in the chronological order of Giotto's works. The
advanced feeling for form, the energy of movement
and simplicity of narration, so clearly shown
throughout the greater part of this remarkable
series, surely point to a date of execution posterior
to all the frescoes in the Lower Church, and but
shortly preceding those in the Arena ChapeL The
last nine subjects of this pictured history, relating
to the death and miracles of the Saint, exhibit a
marked divergence in style from those that pre-
cede them, and are probably by the same unknown
pupil of the master to whom are due the frescoes
in the chapel of St. Nicholas, in the Lower
Church.

It is not quite certain at what date Giotto went
to Padua ; but the Scrovegno Chapel, in the old
Arena of that city, was not built until 1303, and
it was its founder, Enrico Scrovegno, a noble
citizen of Padua, who employed Giotto to decorate
it. The undertaking was an arduous one, but
the result was equal to the opportunity. In a
series of thirty-eight frescoes, the master depicted,
in a triple course along the walls, the histories of
the Virgin and of her Divine Son. Beneath these
lines of pictures were placed thoughtfully-con-
ceived figures of the antagonistic Virtues and

163



A BIOGRAPHICAL DICTIONARY OF



Vices, while the Last Judgment was painted
above the arch of the doorway, and the An-
nunciate Virgin, to whom the chapel was dedi-
cated, was above the opposite arch. This great
decorative work at Padua may well be looked
upon as the culminating expression of Giotto's
art. Nowhere do we find his ideal of concise
directness of representation more successfully
expressed than is the case here, and nowhere do
we find him reaching a similar perfection in the
presentation of form and movement. The entire
decoration of this beautiful chapel rightly takes a
foremost place among the wonders of modern art.
To enter into a detailed mention of the various



Online LibraryMichael BryanBryan's dictionary of painters and engravers (Volume 1) → online text (page 44 of 98)