Pierre Grassou by Honoré de Balzac

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The Project Gutenberg EBook of Pierre Grassou, by Honore de Balzac

This eBook is for the use of anyone anywhere at no cost and with
almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or
re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included
with this eBook or online at www.gutenberg.net

Title: Pierre Grassou

Author: Honore de Balzac

Translator: Katharine Prescott Wormeley

Release Date: June 27, 2005 [EBook #1230]

Language: English

Character set encoding: ASCII


Produced by John Bickers and Dagny




Translated by
Katharine Prescott Wormeley


To the Lieutenant-Colonel of Artillery, Periollas,
As a Testimony of the Affectionate Esteem of the Author,

De Balzac


Whenever you have gone to take a serious look at the exhibition of
works of sculpture and painting, such as it has been since the
revolution of 1830, have you not been seized by a sense of uneasiness,
weariness, sadness, at the sight of those long and over-crowded
galleries? Since 1830, the true Salon no longer exists. The Louvre has
again been taken by assault,--this time by a populace of artists who
have maintained themselves in it.

In other days, when the Salon presented only the choicest works of
art, it conferred the highest honor on the creations there exhibited.
Among the two hundred selected paintings, the public could still
choose: a crown was awarded to the masterpiece by hands unseen. Eager,
impassioned discussions arose about some picture. The abuse showered
on Delacroix, on Ingres, contributed no less to their fame than the
praises and fanaticism of their adherents. To-day, neither the crowd
nor the criticism grows impassioned about the products of that bazaar.
Forced to make the selection for itself, which in former days the
examining jury made for it, the attention of the public is soon
wearied and the exhibition closes. Before the year 1817 the pictures
admitted never went beyond the first two columns of the long gallery
of the old masters; but in that year, to the great astonishment of the
public, they filled the whole space. Historical, high-art, genre
paintings, easel pictures, landscapes, flowers, animals, and
water-colors,--these eight specialties could surely not offer more
than twenty pictures in one year worthy of the eyes of the public,
which, indeed, cannot give its attention to a greater number of such
works. The more the number of artists increases, the more careful and
exacting the jury of admission ought to be.

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Books | Photos | Paul Mutton | Fri 5th Jun 2020, 10:15