The Sculptor Speaks: Jacob Epstein to Arnold L. Haskell, a Series of Conversations on Art

By Jacob Epstein; Arnold L Haskell | Go to book overview

CHAPTER THREE
RIMA
A DISCUSSION ON BEAUTY -- RIMA -- A RÉSUMÉ OF THE
CRITICISM OF RIMA

(1)

A. L. H. How is it that so many things that are beautiful in art are the reverse in nature? Rembrandt's "Carcase" is the classic example. Rodin in his L'Art says:

"Ce qu'on nomme communément laideur dans la Nature peut clans l'art devenir d'une grande beauté. . . . Mais qu'un grand artiste s'empare de l'une ou de l'autre de ces laideurs, instantanément il la transfigure -- d'un coup de baguette magique il en fait de la beauté; c'est de l'alchimie, de la féerie."*

EPSTEIN. I do not agree with the theory that the magicwand changes something ugly in nature; transmutation by a painter or a sculptor into something

____________________
*
"What is commonly called ugliness in nature can in art become exceedingly beautiful. . . But when a great artist gets hold of one or another of these ugly things, instantly he transforms them, with a touch of his wand he makes them beautiful; it is alchemy, magic."

-21-

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