2512. In Faldoni’s cell small portrait heads began to proliferate as he slowly covered his back wall with innumerable different sized patches of plaster. For a long time he concentrated strictly on the profile head, either looking to the left or the right, and would not consider doing the full face view, or the dreaded three quarter angle.
2513. After a while, however he began to look at his
assembled little portraits with a critical eye. The appearance of a
certain dissatisfaction with his work had a curious source; it was the
comments uttered by the other apprentices about the master’s paintings
when the master was out of the room.
2514. These critical comments awakened in Faldoni the
realization that paintings could not only be found fault with, but
positively subjected to heartless, scathing ridicule. For example, it
just so happened that all of the portrait heads painted by the master
seemed as if they all had the very same Grandparents.
2515. They looked like they had the same Grandparents because no matter how hard he tried, he was unable to overcome a tendency to resort to certain stock shapes for the eyes, nose and mouth, that over the years had provided him with the best results. Not only did all the characters in his paintings look like they were related, they looked like they were related to the master himself.