On the eve of my departure for Florence to study the art of the quattrocento, a painter friend who had spent considerable time in Tuscany gave me some good advice. He had approached the city by first acquainting himself with the surrounding region. As he sojourned on the banks of the Arno, in the Apennines and in Fiesole, he absorbed the light and spirit of this countryside in which the inhabitants, the vegetation, the earth, and the sky are in such complete harmony. Then he narrowed the circle. He strolled through the streets of Florence, settled down to work there, and gradually became more and more attuned to the mentality and inner vision that had inspired Florentine architecture. Still he did not venture inside churches or museums, until he had completely assimilated the mood and grasped the significance of all the forces that had concurred in the creation of the many paintings and sculptures contained within. Only thus prepared did he approach Giotto, Uccello, and Angelico, ready to receive their message in all its sensuous opulence.
KeywordsOlive Orchard Almond Tree Time Immemorial Musty Odor True Nobility
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