Moving back a century or so, early Christian art, sometimes called Byzantine art was little changed for perhaps 1000 years. Talk about a style with legs! A Madona and Child fresco painting from the Catacomb of Priscilla in Rome dates from the third century. It features a sitting madonna holding a child-like Christ on her lap. Stylisitcally, it is little different from one painted in the 1300's by the Italian artist, Duccio. The Duccio panel is rich with heavy gold leaf and much more linear in design with the madonna enthroned in what would appear to be a circular seat that would appear to have been modeled after the Colluseum.
The third century fresco, in contrast, lacks a halo and actually seems more naturalistic than the Duccio figure. It seems possible, if not certain, that Duccio might have been familiar with the catacomb fresco. Whtever the case, though different, there is little doubt that stylistically, they are cut from the same cloth thousand-year-old cloth. Pursuing Madonna and child paintings down through Giotto, (a student of Duccio) to Massaccio (a student of Giotto) to his student, Piero della Francesca we can watch generation by generation as the Byzantine slowly gave birth to the Renaissance like a mother giving birth to a child.