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absurdity and vanity

Post #10 • May 12, 2003, 8:01 PM

“Surely due to my Chrisitan belief, I am totally indifferent to society’s seductions, the notorious personality cult that the modern world imposes on artists. The Desert Fathers, apostles who should be our guiding lights, promulgate renunciation, an extreme bareness that permits me to reach my interior vision, what I really am. Instead of this, society constantly calls on people, distancing them from themselves, putting mirrors in front of their faces that do not reflect reality. They are mere lies, alibis, and masks. The art market is infected with this kind of gangrene, and a painter’s sacrosanct signature is worth more than the painting itself. What absurdity and vanity, when one compares it to the past! How far we are from the old masters’ modesty and need for seclusion.”

Balthus, Vanished Splendors

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