Universitätsbibliothek HeidelbergUniversitätsbibliothek Heidelberg

Studio: international art — 9.1897

DOI issue:
Nr. 46 (January 1897)
DOI article:
Little, James Stanley: Maurice Greiffenhagen and his work
DOI Page / Citation link: 

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Mcmrice Greiffenhagen

AURICE GREIFFENHAGEN It was Mr. Whistler who said to me that the true

AND HIS WORK. BY J. artist, being artist in one thing is artist in everything.

STANLEY LITTLE ^n otner words, the artistic faculty permeates the

whole nature of the genuine artist, and although it

The realm of art is full of ano- may be allowed that a great painter may be quite

malies. How could it be otherwise since art itself incapable of understanding or appreciating literary

is an anomaly in this world of hard dry reality, excellence—Turner's criticism on the works of his

where the necessity of grasping at the tangible, or friend Sir Walter Scott was, " the covers of some are

of guarding it, should it already be in our posses- certainly very pretty "—and may be as dead to the

sion, weighs heavily upon all of us, turning us from achievements of divinely inspired musicians, the

our dreams, wherein the things of beauty reign seeming anomaly is to be attributed, when not to

supreme, to the commonplaces of keeping a roof the handicap of defective education, to that ab-

over our heads and a foot of earth under our feet, sorption of the faculties in one groove which is

Thus it comes that in these days, to subscribe to demanded of the great artist in that he may perfect

the cant of the hour, for assuredly it was so in himself, that is to say, give expression to the best

every age, the artist is compelled to pay forfeit that is in him, along the line of least resistance,

for being what nature made him. He must the channel in which his power of expressing his

make terms with the men and women of his day devotion to the beautiful runs strongest,

and generation; with the mammon of unrighteous- It may be asserted, however, and without fear of

ness. Some few, born in the purple, or endowed contradiction, that the artist, whatever be the art

by nature with a rugged pertinacity, enabling them he may follow, has a catholic attachment to, and

to defy the rude buffetings of the world, have appreciation of, the other arts; or at all events that

seemed—it has only been seeming after all—to he entertains a sympathetic feeling towards all

rise superior to circumstance ; to be throughout the branches of his own art. Sometimes we meet with

architects of their own beings. But for all that the an artist whose being is so saturated with artistic

artist, like the rest of us, is a poor thrall—a pack- sensibility that we wonder how he came to devote

horse carrying merchandise for otheis to enjoy, himself exclusively to one art. Maurice Greiffen-

Velasquez doing the bidding of Philip IV.; Rey- hagen supplies a case in point, and in truth his own

nolds, cap in hand, to the scion of that Philistine life-work, though confined within the limits of

house which had supplanted a dynasty peculiarly graphic art, has demonstrated that he experienced

attuned to artistic affinities; and Morland painting some difficulty in ranging himself,

signboards for country tavern keepers for the I have in earlier years been with Mr. Greiffen-

price of his board and lodging. hagen in some of the most beautiful parts of the