500 years ago, the great Titian began his massive work, The Assumption, at the Church of the Frari in Venice. We recall this, having recently seen the very curiously intriguing documentary on Renoir, which spoke of the Frenchman’s sojourn in Italy, whereupon he commenced his ‘neo-classical’ phase, inspired by the work of Titian.
O the cruel downside of inspiration! It can lead to humiliating comparisons. The Age of cultural relativism cannot combat the visceral power of aesthetic comparison, and short of some official arts guru with the instincts, puissance, and paranoia of, say, Stalin, it probably never shall.