What would the later history of modern art have been, if the Great War had never been fought? It is impossible to know. The war gutted an entire generation, and it is still an infinitely moving experience to wander among those fields of crosses in the military cemeteries of the Somme, each with its plaque reading INCONNU; or to stand beneath the immense arches of the monument on top of Thiepval Hill, whose columns carry the names of the thousands upon thousands of Englishmen whose bodies were never extricated from the mud. We know the names of some artists who died: among the painters, Umberto Boccioni, Franz Marc, and August Macke; the sculptor Henri Gaudier-Brzeska, the architect Antonio Sant’ Elia, the poets Guillaume Apollinaire, Wilfred Owen, and Isaac Rosenberg. But for every one of these names there must have been scores, even hundreds, of men who never had a chance to develop. If you ask where is the Picasso of England or the Ezra Pound of France, there is only one probable answer: still in the trenches.Robert Hughes, The Shock of the New, p.59. (via johnthelutheran)
[T]he years around 1918 brought many pointed jabs at the middle-brow cult of art. In our time, this cult is fed by corporate gold-and-masterpiece shows, so that the art experience is replaced by the excitement of peering at inaccessible capital.Robert Hughes, The Shock of the New, p.66. (via johnthelutheran)
Oh honey, that’s just how old houses are. They settle. They sometimes creak or groan, or quietly weep, or demand blood sacrifice in voices that sounds like the fluttering wings of a thousand moths. It’s just the house settling. For whatever it can get. Go back to sleep.