The critic has to educate the public; the artist has to educate the critic.
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- Temperament is the primary requisite for the critic — a temperament exquisitely susceptible to beauty, and to the various impressions that beauty gives us.
- That is what the highest criticism really is, the record of one’s own soul. It is more fascinating than history, as it is concerned simply with oneself. It is more delightful than philosophy, as its subject is concrete and not abstract, real and not vague. It is the only civilized form of autobiography.
- The true critic is he who bears within himself the dreams and ideas and feelings of myriad generations, and to whom no form of thought is alien, no emotional impulse obscure.
- On an occasion of this kind it becomes more than a moral duty to speak one’s mind. It becomes a pleasure.
- Technique is really personality. That is the reason why the artist cannot teach it, why the pupil cannot learn it, and why the aesthetic critic can understand it. To the great poet, there is only one method of music — his own. To the great painter, there is only one manner of painting — that which he himself employs. The aesthetic critic, and the aesthetic critic alone, can appreciate all forms and all modes. It is to him that Art makes her appeal.
- While one should always study the method of a great artist, one should never imitate his manner. The manner of an artist is essentially individual, the method of an artist is absolutely universal. The first is personality, which no one should copy; the second is perfection, which all should aim at.