The history of responses to the work of the artist Sandro Botticelli (1444-1510) suggests that widespread appreciation by critics is a relatively recent phenomenon. Writing in 1550, Vasari expressed an unease with Botticelli's work, admitting that the artist fitted awkwardly into his evolutionary scheme of the history of art. Over the next two centuries, academic art historians defamed Botticelli in favor of his fellows Florentine, Michelangelo. Even when anti-academic art historians of the early nineteenth century rejected many of the standards of evaluation adopted by their predecessors, Botticelli's work remained outside of accepted taste, pleasing neither amateur observers nor connoisseurs. (Many of his best paintings, however, remained hidden away in obscure churches and private homes.)
The primary reason for Botticelli's unpopularity is not difficult to understand: most observers, up until the mid-nineteenth century, did not consider him to be noteworthy, because his work, for the most part, did not seem to these observers to exhibit the traditional characteristics of fifteenth-century Florentine art. For example, Botticelli rarely employed the technique of strict perspective and, unlike Michelangelo, never used chiaroscuro.
Another reason for Botticelli's unpopularity may have been that his attitude toward the style of classical art was very different from that of his contemporaries. Although he was thoroughly exposed to classical art, he showed little interest in borrowing from the classical style. Indeed, it is paradoxical that a painter of large-scale classical subjects adopted a style that was only slightly similar to that of classical art.
In any case, when viewers began to examine more closely the relationship of Botticelli's work to the tradition of fifteenth-century Florentine art, his reputation began to grow. Analyses and assessments of Botticelli made between 1850 and 1870 by the artists of the Pre-Raphaelite movement, as well as by the writer Pater (although he, unfortunately, based his assessment on an incorrect analysis of Botticelli's personality), inspired a new appreciation of Botticelli throughout the English-speaking world. Yet Botticelli's work, especially the Sistine frescoes, did not generate worldwide attention until it was finally subjected to a comprehensive and scrupulous analysis by Home in 1908. Home rightly demonstrated that the frescoes shared important features with paintings by other fifteenth-century Florentines - features such as skillful representation of anatomical proportions, and of the human figure in motion. However, Home argued that Botticelli did not treat these qualities as ends in themselves - rather, that he emphasized clear depletion of a story, a unique achievement and one that made the traditional Florentine qualities less central. Because of Home's emphasis crucial to any study of art, the twentieth century has come to appreciate Botticelli's achievements.
36.Which of the following would be the best title for the text?
[A] The Role of Standard Art Analyses and Appraisals.
[B] Sandro Botticelli: From Rejection to Appreciation.
[C] The History of Critics' Responses to Art Works.
[D] Botticelli and Florentine: A Comparative Study.
37.We can learn from the text that art critics have a history of
[A] suppressing painters' art initiatives.[B] favoring a Botticelli's best paintings.
[C] rejecting traditional art characteristics.[D] undervaluing Botticelli's achievements.
38.The views of Vasari and Home on Botticelli's products are
[A] identical. [B] complementary. [C] opposite. [D] similar.
39.The word "connoisseurs" (Paragraph 1) most probably means
[A] representatives in the Pre-Raphaelite Movement.
[B] people who are in favor of Florentine.
[C] critics who are likely to make assessments.
[D] conservatives clinging to classical art.
40.What does the author think of Botticelli's representation skills?
[A] They are to be fully appreciated.[B] They evolve from an uncertain source.
[C] They underlie his personality.[D] They conform to the classical style.