By George Boas
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Extra resources for A Primer For Critics
One in the paintings of the late finds them Renaissance where per- spective and foreshortening and intricacies of pattern became, one would judge, the end of the art. his head besides a desire artists to fiddle with a design. should serve a useful social purpose is The deeper question is what the almost self-evident. is. That it is communistic propaganda, or Christianity, or the Eternal Values, or any other specific philosophy of life can only be answered if we know socially useful the value of these philosophies.
There are restrictions which are inherent in certain One cannot give in words so accurate a deas one colors, for instance scription of some things a events so tellof series can in paints. One cannot paint materials. ingly as one can make a moving picture of them. Emo- tions and perceptual qualities are not easily described in words, but the former may be perfectly rendered by acting, the latter by literal production of them. Yet during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries many artists for- sook the traditional subject-matters of their arts and attempted those of other arts, musicians attempting to paint and to tell stories in notes, poets attempting to write music in words, painters attempting to paint the pictures of time and all sides of an object at once.
4 A PRIMER FOR 40 CRITICS we shall discuss only the most simplify matters, obvious utilities from the artist's point of view. They are To the financial value of the first, work of art, second, the the artist uses his propagandist value. In the first case, works of art to earn his living; in the second, to influence the behaviour of his fellow men in other ways or to We spread ideas. are concerned here only with conscious propaganda. few 1) All artists, with selling their works of art. or the highly eccentric exceptions, are interested in The exceptions who care more are the wealthy for their own appreciation of their works of art than for that of others.