Every compiler of a book such as this is inclined to grumble and ask for indulgence because of the limitations within which he must work: the inevitable renunciation of the advantages of precision, the problems of selection. But here, if it be permitted to worry the reader at all with such preliminary remarks, we must obviously confine ourselves to matters specifically relevant to the present volume.
It will be generally admitted that the greatest difficulty facing the historian of nineteenth-century art is due to the growth of individualism; also, obviously, the nearer we come to our own times, the more known artists there are among whom many appeal to us almost as contemporaries. This being the case, how are we to choose? How resolve the contradiction between an 'art history without names' and a period in which there are so many names? Perhaps the worst of it is the horrible and inhuman 'Also ran ...'. But, having uttered my complaint, I must leave the matter at that.
Perhaps, however, I may be allowed to say that I have deliberately paid more attention to general, international features in the development of methods and forms of conception than I have to the task of attempting to interpret national differences.
There are so many people I have to thank for help that I cannot mention them all individually. My colleagues in museums and galleries have obtained photographs and information for me, especially Dr Heinrich Brauer of the Ehem. Staatliche Museen and Dr Vera Ruthenberg of the Staatliche Museen in Berlin, and M. Albert Châtelet of the Louvre. Professor Otto Benesch, Director of the Albertina Print Room in Vienna, Dr Franz Glück, Director of the Historisches Museum der Stadt Wien, and Professor Siegfried Freiberg, Director of the Print Room of the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Vienna, kindly permitted the making of reproductions from originals in their collections. Photographs were also obtained for me by Professor Klaus Berger in Kansas City, my friend Dr John Rewald in New York, and Dr Zdrawka Ebenstein of the Österreichische Galerie. At the beginning of my work on this book, my friend the late Ludwig Münz gave me much valued advice.
Other friends and colleagues provided me with bibliographical details and corrections. They are Dr Selma Krasa-Florian, who did prodigiously much for me, Miss Mimi Mihaliuk of the Österreichische Nationalbibliotek, Dr Fritz Grossman, Dr Bruno Fürst, Dr Herta Hanatschek, Dr Viktor Griessmaier, Director of the Österreichisches Museum für angewandte Kunst, and Dr Gustav Künstler.
All these and many others, including those who have kindly permitted reproduction of pictures in their possession, I wish to assure of my profound gratitude.