The Life of Forms in Art

The Life of Forms in Art

The Life of Forms in Art

The Life of Forms in Art

Excerpt

The English version of Vie des Formes was exhausted so rapidly, and has become so inaccessible to students and amateurs, that the translators now take advantage of the hospitality of Wittenborn, Schultz, Inc., to bring the work once again before the public. The translation has been emended in numerous places; more illustrations are added; and the essay, "Eloge de la main," written byFocillon at the time of the second French edition (1936) -- and printed with it -- appears for the first time in English, in a translation byS. L. Faison, Jr.

The illustrations, as in the first English edition, refer to the sense of Focillon's discussion, rather than to specific works of art as mentioned in the text. G. K.

Foreword to the first English edition:

The Vie des Formes was originally published in Paris in 1934. Since then there has been another French edition, and translations into Czech and Danish, although the latter exists only in manuscript. The present text is the first to appear in English.

When, about eighteen months ago, work upon it was begun, its distinguished author granted to the translators an entirely free hand. Their text is, as a result of this generous action, somewhat longer than is that of the original, since a great many words and passages have been liberally extended. No translation is -- or at least should be -- strictly literal. This is peculiarly the case as regards a book whose argument is as penetrating and as revolutionary as is that of the Vie des Formes. Every . . .

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