Extraordinary details, external exactness and idealistic structure… still figures in Jan van Eyck’s work absolutely lack emotional development. Pursuing perfection in details (in pretty much everything, including human faces, fabrics, etc.) he makes the figures “locked into one place”, not giving any room for change. There is also a lot of evident symbolism in Jan van Eyck’s work, which is not so easy to spot in Rogier van der Weyden’s painting.
Both of the works were painted using the “glazed oil” (layering and building on top of glazes) technique, which was Jan van Eyck’s primary medium. And there is no doubt that Rogier derived Jan’s ideas about the atmospheric use of light and shade; but still “Giovanni Arnolfini and His Wife” differs from Rogier’s work in having that effect of chiaroscuro (a quality rather typical of the art of Jan van