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Saturday, June 8, 2013

Coromo In New York, parts 1683 - 1686

 1683. First of all they seemed oversimplified and crude to his eye, and yet there was something inspired and ingenious about them. In his mind he compared those first paintings to all of the others he had done and he could not escape the odd conclusion he reached: they were his best things.

1684. How many times have you heard someone say, “I like Picasso, but I like his earliest works best?” Then again someone says, “Fellini’s films are great but I prefer the earlier films like ‘La Strada.’” Of the renaissance one hears the remark, “The works of Michelangelo and Raphael are undoubtedly great, but I prefer Fra Angelico.”

1685. Even the works of the ancients do not escape this form of aesthetic differentiation as one can find those specialists who love and respect the Elgin marbles, the work of Praxilities, and at the same time saying that even though they are the high point of classical Greek sculpture, yet they will tell you that they prefer the ‘Archaic Style’ and will always mention the Temple of Aegina and its figures. 

1686. And of those who prefer Fra Angelico to Michelangelo, there are also those who will say they prefer Giotto and Camabue to Fra Angelico. What these attitudes reflect in every case is the longing for the origin of the thing. It is a search for the seed rather than the fruit in both the culture, and in the individual.

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