Art Quote of the Day

” Kandinsky is painting music.  That is to say, he has broken down the barrier between music and painting and has isolated the pure emotion which, for want of a better name, we call the artistic emotion.  Anyone who has listened to good music with any enjoyment will admit to an unmistakable but quite indefinable thrill.  He will not be able, with sincerity, to say that such a passage gave him such visual impressions, or such a harmony roused in him such emotions.  The effect of music is too subtle for words.  And the same with this painting of Kandinsky’s.  Speaking for myself, to stand in front  of some of his drawings or pictures gives a keener  and more spiritual pleasure than any other kind of painting.  But I could not express in the least what gives the pleasure.  Presumably the lines and colours have the same efect as harmony and rhythm in music have on the truly musical.  That psychology comes in no one can deny.  Many people- perhaps at present the very large majority of people – have their colour- music sense  dormant.  It has never been exercised.  In the same way many people are unmusical- whether wholly, by nature, or partly, for lack of experience.  Even when Kandinsky’s ideas is universally understood there may be many who are not moved by his melody.  For my part, something within me answered to Kandinsky’s art the first time I met with it.  There was no question of looking for representation; a harmony had been set up, and that was enough.”

Translator’s ( M.T.H. Sadler) Introduction to ,Wassily Kandinsky – Concerning the Spiritual in Art

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