Memoirs of the Life of William Collins, Esq., R.A.: With Selections from His Journals and Correspondence

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Longman, Brown, Green, and Longmans, 1848 - Painters - 354 pages
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Page 148 - I find more substantial comfort, now, in pious George Herbert's ' Temple,' which I used to read to amuse myself with his quaintness — in short, only to laugh at — than in all the poetry, since the poems of Milton.
Page 256 - Yet, ere six weeks had passed, he recorded the conviction " that the only art pure and unsophisticated, and that is worth study and consideration by an artist, or that has the true object of art in view, is to be found in the works of those masters who revived and improved the art, and those who ultimately brought it to perfection. These alone seem to have addressed themselves to the common sense of mankind.
Page 289 - Titian ; than whom perhaps no painter is more misrepresented and misunderstood. I saw myself at Florence his famous Venus, upon an easel, with Kirkup and Wallis by me. This picture, so often copied, and every copy a fresh mistake, is what I expected it to be ; deep, yet brilliant, indescribable in its hues, yet simple beyond example in its execution and its colouring.
Page 148 - Bacchus' fruit is friend to Phoebus wise. And when with wine the brain begins to sweat, The numbers flow as fast as spring doth rise. Thou kenst not, Percy, how the rhyme should rage. O, if my temples were distained with wine, And girt in garlands of wild ivy twine, How I could rear the Muse on stately stage, And teach her tread aloft in buskin fine, With quaint Bellona in her equipage.
Page 258 - The whole of the rest of this letter is taken up with similar admirable expressions of his judgment of the great masters. Of the Raphaels in Rome he says, " They have more excellences addressed to the unlearned observers than any works I know of. When in the freshness of their first existence they must have been most attractive to the common people, which, I doubt, is more than could have been said for Titian or Rubens.
Page 301 - I write this with one hand, fancy me covering my face with the other — should venture across the Bidassoa, what a conflict in testimony there would be ! The spiritual Velasquez, whose principle and practice Sir Thomas Lawrence so justly calls the true philosophy of art, would be rendered with all the dash and splash that tongue, pen, or pencil, is capable of; while the simple Murillo, perhaps despised like Goldsmith for his very excellence, would have his Correggio-like tones transposed into the...
Page 214 - You bear the name of a great poet, and you are yourself increasing the honours of that name, by your progress in one of the intellectual arts — I could receive no fees from any ' William Collins ' ; and still less could I take them from you.
Page 257 - ... to have addressed themselves to the common sense of mankind. From Giotto to Michael Angelo, expression and sentiment seem the first thing thought of, whilst those who followed seem to have allowed technicalities to get the better of them, until, simplicity giving way to intricacy, they seem to have painted more for the artist and the connoisseur than for the untutored apprehensions of ordinary men.
Page 64 - ... random. Sentiment in pictures can only be produced by a constant attention to the food given to the painter's mind. A proper dignity and proper respect for oneself is the only shield against the loathsomeness of vulgarity. Again, on being elected 'an associate at the Academy, the following entry occurs: "To aim greatly at reformation in the leading features of my private character — the little weaknesses that almost escape detection, and which, notwithstanding their pettiness, seem to be the...
Page 148 - Poetry is out of the question. The attempt would only hurry me into that sphere of acute feelings from which abstruse research, the mother of self-oblivion, presents an asylum.

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