nonhocapito wrote:Sorry I don't want to be polemic on every point but I need to answer to this. The artists of the 12th or 13th century had techniques that are completely unknown to us today; there is not a single human being left on the planet capable to draw, paint, design and produce art like those peasants of the middle-ages, let alone the artists of the Renaissance.Maat wrote:However, even supposing an artist of the 12th or 13th century had some secret technique (still unknown to modern science) to produce such a delicately faint, superficial negative image on the surface fibers of a linen cloth (only visible from 6' away)
This is made evident by today's "scientific" restorations, that end up destroying forever works of art that even the botched recolorations of the 19th century had left basically preserved. I have seen with my own eyes the Venetian school of painting disappear under unscrupulous chemical wash overs, that ended up cleaning the veils and layers laid by the masters on top of the work done by the pupils. If today one wants to see a painting by Giovanni Bellini or Carpaccio, one can't. One can only see the flat, absurdly bright and vibrant preparatory work of the pupils. So much for science understanding arts.
I understand and agree with you, Nonho! I'm not disputing the painting techniques and 'recipes' of the Medieval artists were unique and inimitable, even Michelangelo (my favorite Renaissance artist), who did not consider himself a painter, invented his own (so did Van Gogh). But those were painters and followed the traditions and styles of their day. (There was no pigment of any kind found in the shroud image, though).
But for the botched 'restorations', is it possible that they simply didn't even use any scientific methods/testing first to determine the paint properties of each master work before assuming the same processes they used before would work? In other words, pure bureaucratic incompetence?
Fine arts were a product of workshops much more than they were a product of single geniuses. Knowledge had been passed through generations and recipes had been accumulated based on trial-and-error, experimentation, invention. The sheer idea of "secret society" is born out of the need to preserve these secrets (the masons). Nobody can just "crack" them with a simple reverse-engineering. What we read in art books, that we have studied techniques and know how (say) cathedrals are built, is a lie. It is pure, manifest, illusion. We don't know. These achievements are based upon experience, and only experience could retrace those steps. Maybe with several lifetimes worth of focusing on those techniques across generations we could understand how the Turin shroud was created, how about that.
As you rightly say, they had secret 'recipes' that were perfected by practice, trial and error, but do you know of any that were done to be barely seen except at a distance? I'm only familiar with Seurat's pointillism of the 19th century that explored that effect.
Are there any that represented anything like a photographic negative in the Middle Ages?
The bearded man iconography came around later, and evolved slowly. Sure maybe the folks in the catacombs had no clue. On the other hand, why would Jesus wear a beard and long hair? Was this customary in his times? Isn't this a little too similar to the iconography of Christianity?
Yes, the beardless 'god-man' a la Apollo, was common in the early years of Christian iconography. Hellenist influences. A lot of early icons in Byzantium had short beards and not always particularly long hair. But they often followed the contemporary fashion anyway.
Yes, it was common for men in Y'eshua's time to wear beards and sometimes even long hair (the Nazirites, a Jewish sect, did so as a specific religious observance).
P.S. I still can't fathom how a Medieval artist or alchemist could know every forensic detail of a Roman crucifixion: the shape of the metal ends of the flagrum; that the nails did not go through the palms, but the wrists; nor the front of the feet but the heels; that the crown of thorns was not just a 'garland' ring around the head, but a clump jammed on the top? Not forgetting how they'd get the blood and serum stains on the cloth first.