International studio — 81.1925

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shadow, is truly magic. In these
we agree with Coquiot, the offi-
cial historian of the Indepen-
dants, that here is something
more than "disconcerting nai-
vete, more than natural emo-
tion, more than touching sim-
plicity. Here is such a style,
invention, employ of pictorial
qualities, and especially such a
love, surrender of self, offering
of the heart laid bare, with
absen ce of falsehood, insincerity,
that one can call the contribu-
tion of Rousseau to painting a
contribution generous and
unique."

Appreciated chiefly by art-
ists, we find Vlaminck and his
comrades preoccupied with him.
In a recent conversation he says,
contrary to what others have
chosen to find: "Rousseau was
not a classic. He was magnifi-
cently ignorant. Scrupulously
honest, he had no creditors and
he left no debt. The masters of
the past and his contemporaries
can claim nothing from him.
Not Greco, not Poussin, not
Corot, not Renoir, not Cezanne.
If he owes anything it is to the
"joyeux farceurs" by henri-julien rousseau pageofsome small illustrated

newspaper at a sou, or to some

Noce" the dog more successfully assigns the group natural history of the primary school, or to a
its position. In"L'Herbage," a masterpiece in the botanical album.

handling of densities in the foliage, in contrast to "Before the inexplicable mystery of the dou-

the solidity and weight of the man anci the cattle, anier's art, especially when one knew the man,
an example of his powers of equilibrium, we have before his incompatibility of temper, if one may
a skilful rhythm of the planes in which the so speak, the so rare gift of his creation, which
mechanical means to it disappear. To return to sometimes touches the grandeur of the primitives,
the rabbit, painted two years before the artist's the surprise at finding immediately in this ion-
death. It is a typical work that by its quaint bomme what we seek through knowledge, led
justness and amazing truth in color values has Derain to say to me, bitterly, 'Then fame belongs
exerted an influence on contemporary art equal to fools. Compared to Rousseau, Cezanne is a
to that of the sunflowers of Van Gogh. One may trickster!'"

again refer to Manet's dexterous transitions, that The remark is quoted for the light it throws
in lesser men degenerate into the insipid tricks of on the aims of our contemporaries. Men long to
the schools. be themselves. They suspect education unfits

From first to last the douanier's painting is them for the office. The phenomenon of Rousseau
genial; but it comes to its full exciting diapason disturbs their assurance of originality, a virtue to
in his tropical compositions that are, for the rest, which they aspire, willing to avoid the mechanical,
balanced and methodical. His use of golden the learned and the given in a return to the
iridescent blacks, warm milky whites, pure fiery instinctive and the primitive, oneself considered,
blues, vegetable orange burning in densities of Thus, speaking idealistically and absolutely, even
greens graduated from moss-agate to deep jungle Cezanne as compared to the douanier is derivative.

two Jijty-six

july 1925
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