The artists repository and drawing magazine: exhibiting the principles of the polite arts in their various branches — 4.1790

Page: 15
DOI Page: Citation link:
License: Public Domain Mark Use / Order
1 cm

ftead of flefh, is a fcandal to nature. There are many
accidents to be remarked and avoided, even in the beft
ftatues : not indeed the fault of the mafter, but arifing
from the difference of their fhadows ; feeing that in real
life the flefh, the fkin, the cartilages, by a kind of trans-
parency, very much foften the demi-tints and fhadows,
which the ftone by its denfity blackens, and thereby
feems yet more opaque than it really is. Add to this,
that in nature there are certain parts which vary with
every motion, and which, by the fupplenefs of the fkin,
are either fmooth, or contracted and wrinkled. Thefe
fculptors generally avoid, but the beft fculptors admit
them ; and in painting, moderately ufed, they are ne-

" The lights alfo on the marble differ from thofe which
are feen on flefh ; the mining of the marble, and the
fharpnefs of the light, heightening the fuperficies more
than it really is ; or deceiving the eye by its rapid

" The artift, who, by a wife difcretion, guards
againft thefe evils, may fully ftudy the antique ftatues :
for in our erroneous and degenerate age, our low genius
keeps us back from that fuccefs which has attended the
ingenuity, judgment, and heroifm of the ancients.
Either the clouds of former ages furround us ; or not
having retrieved former errors, it pleafes God to fuffer
us to proceed from bad to worfe ; or whether to their ir-
reparable damage, our minds are enfeebled as the world
grows old ; or whether, in thefe latter ages, natural ob-
jects are degenerated from what they were when nearer
to their origin, and do not now offer thofe beauties they

loading ...