The Editorial Series
byMike Vye

So few people truly understand Picasso. They see cubism as merely decorative arrangements and fail to read the paintings losing out on the visual poetry which I believe was Picasso's greatest gift. Daniel-Henry Kahnweiler, Picasso's dealer and life long friend said in a 1969 interview...

.."the message of these artists remains alas partly misunderstood. Their intentions which inclined toward a complete figuration, were not always grasped, and those who failed to read their paintings saw them as mere decorative arrangements. I have broken many a lance against this abstract pseudo-art in the "Conversations" and elsewhere, but in the meantime, these heresies have only multiplied. What a mass of absurd and gratuitous inventions!

"Gadgets" of every description are presented to credulous buyers and terrified critics who want to be up to date and who no longer dare attack anyone for fear of being wrong. Optical or electrical toys, castings from nature, house painter's samples are presented as works of art. I always feel like asking the people who tout these miserable objects, Do you really feel that this is the same as a Rembrandt?" For I am convinced that the essence of art is one, and that a Picasso is the same as a Rembrandt, that is, an emotion that the artist has experienced and shares with the spectator.

How are we to explain this proliferation of "novelties?" The cause is the need to make something new, for only the "new" attracts attention. It is the "new" that pseudo-art lovers buy, people who think of buying art in terms of bringing off a deal.

Never have real painters consciously decided to do something new-neither the impressionists nor the cubists. It was not their intention to "epater (shock) le bourgeois."

The novelty of their intentions was in no sense deliberate. The painting of their elders did not satisfy them, and they were trying to provide what seemed to be missing. A far cry from today , when we have a chorus of loudmouths, each trying to shout the other down...."

Sounds like pretty harsh words but remember this is coming from Picasso's life long friend and close associate. Picasso remains the foremost artist of the 20th century.

 

All art work on this site Copyright Mike Vye
2012 all rights reserved

 

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