Antique paintings

In ancient times painting was conceived as an activity for artisans. Painters received specific indications about painting’s subject, purpose, deadline. Later artists gained independence, becoming free to individually choose themes, purposes and meanings of their work of art.


14th Century

dipinto antico del trecento
In the 14th century painters abandoned Medieval figurative forms in favor of refined methods of prospective representation that strongly influence the way we perceive antique paintings nowadays. The turning point in figurative culture is represented by the definitive abandonment of the typical elements of Byzantine style, in order to create a new form of art and painting representing and interpreting reality strongly linking it to classical elements. The main painting themes evolved from sacred themes, represented on a golden background, to a wider range of topics. This shows evidence of the growing interest in other aspects of society, as people did not just rely on religion and dogmatic principles, but started to analyze reality. Local schools were created, very different from Byzantine style schools.
The interest in real aspects is reflected also in painting, with an unprecedented tendency to realism, the most important representative of which is Giotto. Characters he painted were real men and women, with their anxiety, hope, feelings, their human nature, represented in a three dimensional shape. The hierarchical prospective representation of antique paintings, according to which subjects dimensions were proportionate to their importance, was used in ancient times. A realistic representation, based on a visual impression was not as usual.


Giotto abandoned the archaic style and the golden background, introducing a form of realism collocating man, space and landscape on the same level, so that he has been defined “the painting father”, thus influencing all the following generations of painters with his works of art.



15th Century

dipinti antichi medioevale - la madonna
In the 15th century man is free from the ties of the Middle Age, free to explore the natural universe, and to act as a protagonist in history.


The cultural climate is strongly influenced by the political disintegration of Italy in states and Signorie. Art plays a key role in representing the political situation, entailing a social and political message.


Proportions in paintings are respected as there is not a prevailing subject and each part is harmoniously proportionated to the whole.



16th Century

The 16th century is a period of wars, turmoil, profound doubts and new creative impulse. Until 1520 the golden technique was still applied; between 1520 and 1540 the religious reflection animated a new way of conceiving painting, whose main expression are Michelangelo works of art; between 1540 and 1560 Tuscan-Roman Mannerism emerged; the period between 1560 and 1580 is marked by the works of Venetian painters Titian, Tintoretto and Veronese, until the evolution of painting toward the natural and objective of Caravaggio revolution. Carracci and Caravaggio are the main representatives of the 17th century, whereas in Venice and Florence Renaissance emerged as a form of art and culture. In the 18th century baroque painting is replaced by an intimate, decorative form of art, suggesting good feelings, named “rococò”.

Giglio & C. is registered to the Antique Art Dealer Federation and the Provincial Trade Union Antique Art Dealer of Milan.
Antique Art Dealer Federation Trade Union Antique Art Dealer of Milan

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