Camera Work: A Photographic Quarterly — 1913 (Heft 44)

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from the real, Walkowitz’s “abstract” compositions are, nevertheless, based
upon the imitative, since he re-creates his experience with nature, and does
not assume any meanings of colors or of forms, and does not disregard the
sense of fitness and harmony. To ask what he wants to say or what partic-
ularly he saw, is not to the point. After all the painter sees as he feels; the
spectator is left to that visible outcome—and to his own imagination. The
painter need not try to word what he can express only in paint.
Is self-expression the highest object of art? Notunless individual talent
is instrument of the cultural spirit, mouthpiece of the human heart en masse.
There is a lot of bosh, today, about guaranteeing the liberties and unmuz-
zled barkings of every dog and pup.
Is rhythm the true mode of the pictorial, or is not the present influence
of music, of feeling, on painting, a supercession to the former literary in-
clination? Walkowitz and Kandinsky are Russian. Culture has radiated
from Florence, north, northwest, northeast. The different races formulate
the pictorial differently. There is the absolute pictorial idea; but its artistic
manifestation is not uniform nor is its field limited. Pure self-expression,
indeed, is a modern achievement, and an enlargement of the sphere of paint-
ing, if it is not art reincarnating in sublime beauty supreme aspiration.
In that sense, is color in painting possible and desirable without the
concrete form of reality, from which man derives his knowledge and divin-
ations? Is soul without body, body without soul?
Oscar Bluemner.

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