—I am fascinated by his otherness, he says. Which he produces from his own mind directly.
It hangs on the north wall of his rooms. Strange, but strange is never strange to each other, the painting is the wild product of an insane mind.
Crudely daubed, the representation is of a child in the last hours of its illness, the last of consumption, with the mouth a scarlet patch, retching up the infection, fouling the cotton nightgown, the blood whipped away into swirls on the dark ground, flames, the heat of death, torment not abridged, judgment;
The dread, the child is nothing in comparison with the forces of the disease,
Also debauchery in the child’s succumbing to the fiend.
—It is Norwegian.
I am not familiar with modern art and its excesses. But my friend has expanded on his view.
—He reaches the depths. To be sure, much influenced by that man named for his public appearances Odilon Redon, (that he goes by to the authorities, at least) who also is in the field of the baroque shocker, but I cannot see that as a reason to ignore the work. Alas, I was bettered at the auction-house when one of his Madonnas appeared there last year… Others, or another, can see the talent… You say crudely daubed, but what else to name the vicissitudes of this world than crude?
The crudity of the unexpected… this man captures it.
He is something for the future, when the people who laugh now will not.
The microscope stands ready. He is busying himself in the preparation of a solution to fix certain eukaryotic cells for a permanent slide.
Fixed with alcohol and acetic acid.
—It speaks of the mystery of ‘how can God allow’.
Stained with gentian violet.
And after a further minute, when I had imagined there was no more to come.
—Which, my dear fellow, is no mystery, and so this is not a beautiful picture.
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When No One is Looking by Hannah Shilling is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.