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My spirit longed to enter Into the fields of bloom.

The tempest's wild repining,
Made sorrow in my soul;
I craved the cheerful shining
When heavy clouds unroll.

I saw a gleam on heather,
Stray through a rifted cloud;
The masses swept together,
The winds spoke fierce and loud.
The mist upon the mountain
Dropped down in hopeless rain;
Fell in a bitter fountain
Over the grieving plain.

All The Year Round


NOT only for yourselves, but for the years
Which you, not knowing, bring to me anew,
Are you so dear that I consider you
With this persistency of quiet tears;
For many silent tones are in your speech,
And dead hopes rise and tremble when you

Making me fancy for a little while That hands I cannot clasp are in my reach; And my soul cries, "What can I do or bear" (I that have lost so much and wept so long) "How make myself your servant, to re

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From The Quarterly Review. THE STATE OF ENGLISH PAINTING.*

tained something more and better than that which the pretentious canvases of THE announcement at a Royal Acad- show-painters bring to the walls of those emy dinner that large sums of money are millionaires who invest their superfluous given for pictures is no evidence that Art thousands in them. Perhaps we should is flourishing among us. When one or hardly go beyond the truth in saying that two thousand pounds are paid for a Chel- scarcely one of the ambitious collectors sea vase, we need not assume that similar who crowd their dining-rooms and drawsums given for paintings by popular art- ing rooms with pictures selected from a ists indicate anything more than abun- fashionable and materialistic point of dant wealth and corresponding vanity. view, would be found willing to give five The price set upon a picture by art-trad-pounds for a picture by Titian or Tintoers and in the sale-room, has, in nine 'retto not inscribed with his name or othcases out of ten, nothing whatever to do erwise externally authenticated. It is with the real value of the work. The difficult to make such "patrons" underwhims of individuals, the despotism of stand that the buying of a name is not fashion, the catchword of the frivolous the buying of a picture; and that a genand ignorant, often carry a temporary in- uine work of art has quite another kind fluence with them, before the deliberative of value than that of a Dutch tulip or a judgment of the thoughtful has been able piece of Dresden china. This vulgar and to come to a definite conclusion. But he commercial Mæcenism is the bane of art; who neither bounds his horizon by the it gives fictitious money-value to bad motives of the moment, nor shares the un- work, and by ill-judged expenditure robs reflecting prejudices of his time, will take the true artist of his merited reward. It a broader view. He will be little disposed exorbitantly raises the commercial value to submit to the unquestioning tyranny of the work of fashionable favourites, and of the present, but casting his eye over depresses that of all others, however the whole kingdom of Art he will contrast worthy it may be. Its tendency is to dethe capabilities and powers that it dis- velop shallow sentiment, and by a clever played in the past with the aimless way- meretricious execution a mere facility wardness and trivial self-seeking that char- of representation - to supersede artistic acterize its dissipated efforts now. The as- dignity and genuine seriousness of aim tute and judicious lover of Art for its own and purpose. sake will follow quite another lead than that of an illusory prestige in gratifying his æsthetic tastes. He will look patiently and closely to the genuine qualities of what he selects; choosing that which suits his own temperament and sympathies, without reference to the false touchstone of popularity; and though unknown out of his circle as an art-patron, he may find ultimately that, in surrounding himself with artistic work thus carefully and independently chosen, he will have ob

For these and other reasons which we shall examine, we find our English Art in so depressed a state as to suggest the inquiry if we have Art at all existing as a school among us. The epic spirit certainly has left our canvases, the idyllic too has vanished, and in their stead we find merely clever imitations in detail of nature, analytic studies, infinite variety of material means; but of the spirit that could bring these into contact with the highest sentiments and feelings, we have nothing left. The dramatic idealism and concentration of Hogarth; the imagina2. A Descriptive Handbook for the Pictures in the tive grace of Reynolds and GainsborHouse of Parliament. By T. J. Gullick. London, 1866. ough; the picturesque diffusiveness of 3. Descriptive and Historical Catalogue of the Pictures of the National Gallery, with Biographical rustic Morland; the scenic breadth of Notes of the Painters. By R. N. Wornum. London, plain, downright John Crome; the suf

1. The Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts. London, 1872.


4. Catalogo degli Oggetti d'Arte esposti al Pubblico nella R. Accademia di Belle Arti in Venezia. Vene

zia, 1872.

fused tenderness and poetic glow of Richard Wilson; the idyllic simplicity and sweetness of Stothard; the glory of the

early Turner, are all passed away. These correctness in the studies from both the things are as far above the mere vulgar "fiat" and the "round," though not imitation of nature and the dexterous wholly reprehensible in themselves (havpainting of draperies or flesh, as the dra- ing, in fact, something to be said for matic scenes and characters of Shake- them), are yet parts of an erroneous speare or of Scott transcend the dull rou- method, and are highly detrimental to the tine of ordinary life. Our recent pictures future destiny of the true artist. We are of an entirely different class. Com- must, nevertheless, protest unreservedly pare the huge masses of raw white, the against one element of the teaching purhard lines, the bald literalisms of some sued in these schools, which allows an of our most celebrated modern paintings, unlimited repetition of similar forms with the diffused tone, the eclectic con- within the same piece of design, supsistency, the intellectual ease and refine-posed to be " ornamental." A number of ment, the thoroughly-felt and well-bal- geometric or conventional figures are conanced values, both æsthetic and material- structed; they are then reversed to fill istic, of Reynolds and Gainsborough. In up a corresponding portion of the allotted our modern pictures we have a hetero- space, and the result is called "ornamengeneous network of lights and shadows, a tal design," though without any of that dispersion of colour utterly without cen- vitality of principle which in dealing with trality, and perplexing alike to the eye decorative forms strives to make them and the mind. All arrangement is lost, subservient to some ruling idea or mental and there is no more trace of mental plan which can alone confer a right to the effort, of the exercise of the art-function, title, and have the power to please the than is mechanically displayed by the lens eye and satisfy the mind from a right of the photographer. A noble, thoughtful point of view. This mode of training is style, broad and vigorous views, healthy almost sure to be disadvantageous to and natural motive, united with whole- those students who should afterwards exsome moral meaning, have given place to tend their practice to the painting of picmere cleverness of touch and slavish imi- tures, as their works must naturally extations of nature. hibit traces of it in a formality of arrangement and distribution quite as fatal to the spirit of Art in the one case as the other.

One of the chief causes of our present shortcomings is undoubtedly the nature of the Art education prosecuted at the A singular instance of the correction Government schools of Art throughout of repetition, and at the same time prothe kingdom. Of course drawing, as a test against its use, occurs on the façade piece of general education, or as an uni- of a small church at Pistoia, across which versal "accomplishment," is entirely dis- runs a simple stone moulding, consisting, tinct from the art of expressing individual with a slight exception, of repeated forms. ideas and sentiments in a picturesque The artist has been well aware that if his manner. This cannot be taught, and can ornament had been allowed to repeat itonly be directed. We must not therefore self punctually throughout its whole expect too much from these useful, but course, a single glance at the first of its far from perfect institutions. But while component elements would have sufficed all are taught the use of lines and the ele- the spectator; but, wishing his moulding ments of form, there is no reason why in- to be more particularly examined, he has struction should not be given in those sculptured a symbolical eagle quite out forms and those lines which contain an of character with the rest of his design artistic idea. At present this is by no about one-third of the distance across; means the case. The endless use of consequently when the eye falls upon this geometric examples in the "flat" (geomet- it is at once arrested and is compelled to ric, at least, in a more or less modified make a careful examination of the reform), the absolute indifference to any-mainder, if only to ascertain if there are thing like an artistic sentiment, and the more irregularities. One, however, has complete slavery to a mere photographic been sufficient. It has caused a careful

and thorough examination of the whole solid and certain because they are diffipiece of workmanship, and it is quite cult to express or explain. Modern critbeautiful enough to preclude disappoint- icism, for the most part, not only avoids ment, which is all the artist desired. A the trouble and repudiates the necessity lesson like this in its full instruction, of mastering these principles, but actucould only come out of an artistic mind ally denies their existence altogether; capable of finding a remedy for every and, as every one can see if a line be evil. Such an expedient would have no crooked or straight, and perceive if a colsignificance in our day, and would be suf- our be deeper or paler or different from ficient to condemn the work of the most that which is found in nature, criticism is hopeful pupil or developed artist, if it confined to these qualities alone, the ulever occurred to him and he should have terior object of all lines and colour in the hardihood to adopt it. painting being entirely overlooked. Under such a supervision as this, true and large Art, the Art which appeals to the instincts of the soul rather than the criterion of measure and rule, must necessarily at first languish and then fail altogether. It is precisely in this condition that we find ourselves; and until the general tone of criticism, both of the public and the press, is altered, its depressing influence must be felt in every kind of Art and in every picture that is painted.

Another hindrance to the progress of true Art is the tone of modern criticism. For every other faculty or function an education is supposed to be required; for that of art-critic none is exacted. Without any attempt to ascertain the aesthetic laws and principles by a process of induction from universally accepted standards, only to be gained by long courses of study and observation, we continually find personal opinions thrust forward as the statutes and canons of judgment, Another cause of injury to Art is the without regard to any central principle large use of machinery in art manufacwhatever, as if, indeed, no such thing ex- tures, in which all trace of human work isted. It is true that a thing may be good is lost, and the mind but faintly reflected or bad according to the point of view or not at all. The very essence and nataken; but that does not annul the fact ture of a work of Art is its visible expresthat nevertheless there is something un- sion of some human sentiment, emotion, doubtedly good and something undoubt- or conception. Everything destitute of edly bad. For example, it is a sound and this expression loses claim to the title of established certainty that the Venetians, Art, whatever may be its qualities or recat their good time, painted on the whole ommendation. We do not say that these good pictures, and that the Bolognese on universal means of reproduction may not the whole, at all times, painted very bad bring special advantages of their own in pictures. From the highest point of view other ways; but they bring none of the the point of view which refers all genuine artistic kind. What makes artworks of Art to a central artistic princi- manufactured reproductions the more ple, not only dwelling in the eye but mischievous is, that generally the worst rooted in the mind — there is no more things instead of the best are chosen. In doubts as to what is a good painting or articles of domestic use, at least, fine a bad painting than there is as to whether shapes and good designs might be prea piece of glass be dim or transparent. ferred; since the one kind is quite as All men do not love apples or potatoes, easy to produce as the other, and it would but the common judgment, and undoubt- also be natural, that in selecting examedly the true one, accounts them both ples of picturesque art for reproduction, good and wholesome. The same thing worth should obtain a preference over holds true of works of Art. Their intrin- worthlessness; the contrary, however, is sic value is not a matter of supposition the case. It is thus that we are so overor personal opinion at all, but a matter of fact, to be ascertained from an application of rules and principles not the less

ridden by the emasculated smoothness and regularity of machine-work and other appliances of the time, that if it should

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