Art and alternating dimensions.
As is known, in reality there are three visible dimensions: height, width and depth. Sculptors have no problems because they have always used all three.
Painting and graphic representations, on the other hand, have two at their disposal.
In prehistoric times, men had a view that we cannot even imagine and in the graffiti we can see that even then a kind of "chiaroscuro" was practiced, because they wanted to simulate the depth of animals.
The Greek and Roman painters knew very well and often practiced both chiaroscuro and the game of distances, to simulate depth.
The Egyptians, on the other hand, not only preferred a rigorous two-dimensionality, but, like the Cubists of 1900, even overturned some forms to describe them better.
Byzantine art, which lasted for centuries, required only two dimensions and canceled out any possible depth with its blue and gold backgrounds.
Then Giotto di Bondone arrives.
The brilliant painter of the late 1200s definitively clears the third dimension, giving body to the figures, inserting architectures and landscapes and, not content, also describing emotions and moods, with gestures and expressive movements on the faces of the characters.
It is no coincidence that in the history of art Giotto is taken as the starting point of Western art.
And here for 700 years, painters from all over Europe considered the simulation of the real environment in three dimensions to be the rule, using chiaroscuro, perspective, shadows, lights and all the technical devices, to give the illusion of a real presence.
Already with the three big names of the Renaissance, Leonardo, Raphael and Michelangelo, the technical equipment reaches its maximum and becomes the "Academy".
All good until the mid-1800s, when painters began to consider more "expressive" to use only two dimensions and the return to spot colors, even under the influence of "Japonism", which also affected Van Gogh so much, and the abolition of all the technical devices to give volume to the figures.
Is the painting two-dimensional? Well, then let's just use two of them and give space to colors and lines in freedom.
Also freed from the "job" of having to describe, thanks to photography, painting has chosen a path where external reality is of no interest or, at most, is a compositional option. End of "mimesis" and the third dimension.
At the same time, art got rid of its "public" as it had been for millennia, that is, of all the people who looked to art as an integral part of their lives.
It has confined itself to a small museum-media-financial circle, where those within the circle are good, evolved, cultured and intelligent, those who dispute it, do not understand it or reject it are ignorant.
If we consider figurative art, today we are experiencing an entirely conceptual phase of elaboration and experimentation.
Apart from hyper-realists, where with today's powerful technical means anyone with patience and a minimum of dexterity can become hyper-realist, we are waiting for something new that speaks to all of us.
In the hope that what was declared in turn by eminent critics and scholars, namely that (figurative) art is dead, will prove to be false