By Philip Ball
Color in paintings - as in lifestyles - is either inspiring and uplifting, yet the place does it come from? How have artists came across new colorings, and the way have those inspired their paintings? starting with the ancients - while only a handful of pigments made up the artist's palette - and charting the discoveries and advancements that experience resulted in the numerous splendoured rainbow of contemporary paints, Bright Earth brings the tale of color spectacularly alive. jam-packed with anecdotes approximately fortunate injuries and hapless misfortunes within the quests for brand new shades, it presents an interesting and interesting new point of view at the technology of art.
National booklet Critics Circle Award Nominee for feedback (2002)
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Additional info for Bright Earth: The Invention of Colour
The common glue is Symbolist culture. ” As a result, the Symbolist artist—a mystic and a seer—must resort to abstraction. According to Aurier’s emphatic conclusion, “the task of the artist, whose eye is able to distinguish essences from tangible objects, . . ” To be a modern primitivist you certainly need not merely ape tribal art ransacked from the French colonies. Aurier is talking about the idea of the primordial, or primitivist attitudes, and not necessarily about any particular art-historical forms.
Webb then points out that “this alliance began in Paris in the 1890s, when the Occult Revival coincided exactly with the Symbolist movement, and the Symbolists drew a great part of their·inspiration from the Occultists. ’ ” At this point, Webb again underscores the crucial role of the Symbolists and their ﬁn de siècle art and theory in the formation of those attitudes which still characterize much of elitist modernism. According to Webb, “from this departure of the Symbolists, from the universe of agreed discourse for private or superior worlds, has sprung the tampering with ‘everyday’ reality which has become so central a feature of modern art.
That separates us from the invisible world. It is an underground wave that gradually enlightens as one is removed little by little from the shadows and from the pale and mutely static ﬁgures who inhabit the realm of limbo. ” As did many of his contemporaries, whether attributing the popular idea that “Le monde des Ésprits s’ouvre pour nous” to Swedenborg or not, Nerval believed in the indestructibility of the Spirit. For Spiritualists, this is an enduring fact. 38 Whereas one could endlessly cite references to Swedenborg in French literature likely known to Duchamp, the most widely known and comprehensive statement is found in Honoré de Balzac’s mystic novel Seraphita (1835).
Bright Earth: The Invention of Colour by Philip Ball