Studio: international art — 34.1905

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Belgian Art at St. Louis

with renewed fervour; and this continued until
1903. In the course of these repeated returns to
his favourite work, he ruthlessly destroyed much
that was already completed, in order to begin it
all over again; at one fell swoop he destroyed
sixty designs. The work now comprises a com-
plete series of one hundred and twenty composi-
tions, in which appear all the typical figures of
burlesque warriors, and all the lively scenes of
paradoxical mythology, conceived by the joyous
fancy of the Milanese poet, while Martini failed
not to add many details of his own invention. A
great number of these drawings are now to be
found in the gallery of modern art in Rome.

Alberto Martini, with his fondness for symbols,
for allegories, and for satirical fantasies, and with
his minute analytical methods, does not in the
least strive after the kind of realism so dear to
many illustrators of the present day, either in its
roughly brutal or its suavely elegant form. He
approaches more nearly to the old masters, whom
he loves perpetually to study; and this gives a
peculiar character of aesthetic austerity to his
work, even in its more joyous moods, adapting it
rather to the interpretation of the poets than to

that of the novelists of everyday life, and making it
more suitable for the representation of subjects
from the past than for that of the fugitive and often
frivolous aspects of the actual present.

Vittorio Pica.


The exhibition presented by Belgium at St. Louis
was one which, from the beginning, stimulated un-
qualified interest. Its character to an unusual degree
was uniformly excellent and the installation was
tastefully and impartially conducted, enough room
having been provided for everything to appear at
the best possible advantage. Its scope was such
that it could not be classified into various schools,
as followed by the older or younger men, nor by
those advocating strange, problematical creeds.
Belgians are seldom extremists, evidence of which is
revealed in their employment of the impressionistic
handling, which is not made the most con-
spicuous element of a painting but its accessory.
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