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Great Masters

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1903 Excerpt: ...used. The extremely delicate suggestion of the drawings could not be reproduced in the scratch of metal on metal. And there is, necessarily, in the work of art meant to address a great number of people a less intimate side than in the work of art addressed to that one judge of exquisitely trained perception, who is the artist, and who can stay his hand at any moment he prefers, content with a suggestiveness that he fully understands. To all artists the successful sketch or partial study brings back a number of attending circumstances which cannot exist in the memory of the outsider, who is not in the confidence of the moment and of the feelings which directed the record. It is a surprising circumstance that so much in the sketch of a great master should be in part our own creation; our own calling up of memories at his mere suggestion. This is true of ever so many cases of masters, small as well as great. But in no drawings is more conveyed by few means than in the drawings of Rembrandt. They are appeals to the existence in his mind and in yours of things that he does not say. The great master of light and shade and of the planes and interchange of these two sides of light, resorts in his drawings to a suggestion of this enveloping atmosphere, by mere lines and sometimes by the mere record of the direction of a line. A landscape opens out into the sun or mist by merely the record of the place of certain objects in the picture, of which he makes an abbreviated note. In the same way the expression of a face or of a whole attitude is given by the place in which the face or attitude might be. A few great planes, as the painter, or sculptor, or architect, calls them, are chosen, and we fill in at once the necessary construction. A mere scratch or two, sometimes ... Hide synopsis

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