The important cycle of the San Vittore Cenoby in Bologna, so far datated to the 13th century, testifies the bloody events which during the second half of the 12th century led to the strengthening of the Bolognese Church. As in other cases to study (Carruthers etc.), the relationship between painting and writing, exhibited in the ‘rotuli’ held by the prophets, reiterates the value of the memory (Beda), as a tool for defining the autonomy of the local church.
During the 13th century, cultural wealth and political influence were increasingly concentrated in the cities. The mendicant orders grew and thrived in them. Yet alongside this process of urbanisation, there was a current of ascetic interest that looked back to the eremitic example of the desert fathers. It was evident in the practices of the flagellant movement, in the veneration of certain hermit-saints, and among some of the mendicant orders. In the late 13th century, it also emerged as a theme in art. A remarkable painting, representing the lives of the desert hermits, is a vivid testament to this contemporary fascination with ancient ascetic example.
By the 19th century in Santiago de Chile, we still can find a search to remember the medieval age. The Dominican order try their best to perpetuate the values of the traditional religious art in their congregation; that’s why they send to be made to Quito a series of religious paintings in order to honor the saints of the order and especially to St Domingo de Guzmán. The most remarkable aspect of this series is that by 1830, the iconography and symbolism of the colonial aesthetic were sought, which in turn remained strongly rooted in the precepts of European medieval art.