|Yale Center for
Jerusalem, Plate 73
Blake was less forthcoming in expressing his opinions about the subject matter of other artists but, judging from his tastes, he did not admire frivolous or superficial artwork, whatever the reputation of the artist. Michelangelo met all his criteria for great art: ability to portray the body with subtlety and accuracy, command of his media to apply color convincingly, and awareness of the spiritual dimension which made the supreme effort of the artist worthwhile.
Slideshare: Michelangelo and Titian
Descriptive Catalogue, PREFACE, (E 529) "THE eye that can prefer the Colouring of Titian and Rubens to that of Michael Angelo and Rafael, ought to be modest and to doubt its own powers. Connoisseurs talk as if Rafael and Michael Angelo had never seen the colouring of Titian or Correggio: They ought to know that Correggio was born two years before Michael Angelo, and Titian but four years after. Both Rafael and Michael Angelo knew the Venetian, and contemned and rejected all he did with the utmost disdain, as that which is fabricated for the purpose to destroy art. Mr. B. appeals to the Public, from the judgment of those narrow blinking eyes, that have too long governed art in a dark corner. The eyes of stupid cunning never will be pleased with the work any more than with the look of self-devoting genius. The quarrel of the Florentine with the Venetian is not because he does not understand Drawing, but because he does not understand Colouring. How should he? he who does not know how to draw a hand or a foot, know how to colour it. Colouring does not depend on where the Colours are put, but on where the lights and darks are put, and all depends on Form or Out-line. On where that is put; where that is wrong, the Colouring never can be right; and it is always wrong in Titian and Correggio, Rubens and Rembrandt. Till we get rid of Titian and Correggio, Rubens and Rembrandt, We never shall equal Rafael and Albert Durer, Michael Angelo, and Julio Romano." Descriptions of Last Judgment, (E 560) "Both in Art & in Life General Masses are as Much Art as a Pasteboard Man is Human Every Man has Eyes Nose & Mouth this Every Idiot knows but he who enters into & discriminates most minutely the Manners & Intentions the [Expression] Characters in all their branches is the alone Wise or Sensible Man & on this discrimination All Art is founded. I intreat then that the Spectator will attend to the Hands & Feet to the Lineaments of the Countenances they are all descriptive of Character & not a line is drawn without intention & that most discriminate & particular much less an Insignificant Blur or Mark>"
On his website Robert Genn quotes from the biographer Giorgio Vasari: "When Michelangelo was introduced to Titian, he said... that Titian's colouring and his style much pleased him, but that it was a pity that in Venice men did not learn to draw well from the beginning, and that those painters did not pursue a better method in their studies."