梅洛龐蒂(Maurice Merleau-Ponty) 著
龔 卓 軍 譯

Cézanne’s Doubt
It took him one hundred working sessions for a still life, one hundred fifty
sittings for a portrait.


One hundred fifty sittings 一百五十次的坐画姿态

What we call his work was, for him, only the attempt and the approach of his painting.


In September of 1906, at the age of sixty seven—
one month before his death—he wrote: “I was in such a state of mental agitation, in such great confusion that for a time I feared my weak reason would not survive. . . . Now it seems I am better and that I see more
clearly the direction my studies are taking. Will I ever arrive at the goal, so
intensely sought and so long pursued? I am still working from nature, and
it seems to me I am making slow progress.”


Painting was his world and his
mode of existence.


He worked alone, without students, without admiration
from his family, without encouragement from the critics.


He painted on the afternoon of the day his mother died. In 1870 he was painting at
L’Estaque while the police were after him for dodging the draft. And still
he had moments of doubt about this vocation.

母親逝世的當天下午,他在畫畫。一八七○年,列斯塔克(l’Estaque) 地方警方以逃避兵役罪名緝捕他時,他也在畫畫。然而,他仍不時對其繪畫的志業充滿疑惑。

As he grew old, he wondered
whether the novelty of his painting might not come from trouble
with his eyes, whether his whole life had not been based upon an accident
of his body.


The hesitation or muddle-headedness of his contemporaries
equaled this strain and self-doubt.



“The painting of a drunken privy
cleaner,” said a critic in 1905. Even today, C. Mauclair finds Cézanne’s admissions
of powerlessness an argument against him.


Meanwhile, Cézanne’s
paintings have spread throughout the world.


Why so much uncertainty, so
much labor, so many failures, and, suddenly, the greatest success?


Zola, Cézanne’s friend from childhood, was the first to find genius
in him and the first to speak of him as a “genius gone wrong.”


An observer
of Cézanne’s life such as Zola was, more concerned with his character than
with the sense of his painting, might well consider it a manifestation of
ill health.


For as far back as 1852, upon entering the Collège Bourbon at Aix,
Cézanne worried his friends with his fits of temper and depression.

遠溯一八五二年,塞尚在艾克斯(Aix)進入波旁學院(College Bourbon)求學時,就因為忽而暴怒忽而沮喪的性情困擾著他周遭的朋友。

years later, having decided to become an artist, he doubted his talent and
did not dare to ask his father—a hatter and later a banker—to send him
to Paris.


Zola’s letters reproach him for his instability, his weakness, and
his indecision. When finally he came to Paris, he wrote: “The only thing I
have changed is my location: my ennui has followed me.”


He could not
tolerate discussions, because they wore him out and he could never give
his reasoning. His nature was basically anxious.


Thinking that he would
die young, he made his will at the age of forty-two; at forty-six he was for
six months the victim of a violent, tormented, overwhelming passion of
which no one knows the outcome and to which he would never refer.


fifty-one he withdrew to Aix, in order to find the nature best suited to his
genius but where also he returned to the milieu of his childhood, his
mother and his sister.


After the death of his mother, Cézanne turned to
his son for support. “Life is terrifying,” he would often say. Religion, which
he then set about practicing for the first time, began for him in the fear
of life and the fear of death.


“It is fear,” he explained to a friend; “I feel I
will be on earth for another four days—what then? I believe in life after
death, and I don’t want to risk roasting in aeternum.”


Although his religion
later deepened, its original motivation was the need to put his life in order
and be relieved of it.


He became more and more timid, mistrustful, and
sensitive. Occasionally he would visit Paris, but when he ran into friends
he would motion to them from a distance not to approach him.


In 1903,
after his pictures had begun to sell in Paris at twice the price of Monet’s
and when young men like Joachim Gasquet and Émile Bernard came to
see him and ask him questions, he relaxed a little. But his fits of anger continued.

一九○三年,當他的畫作在巴黎開始以莫內(Monet)畫作的兩倍價碼賣出,而加斯奎(Joachim Gasquet)和勃納爾(Emile Bernard)這些年輕人開始來拜訪他之際,他的脾氣緩和了些。不過,他那忽爾發作的暴怒卻絲毫未改。

In Aix a child once hit him as he passed by; after that he could not
bear any contact. One day when Cézanne was quite old, Émile Bernard
steadied him as he stumbled. Cézanne flew into a rage.
He could be heard
striding around his studio and shouting that he wouldn’t let anybody “get
his hooks into me.”


Because of these “hooks” he pushed women who could
have modeled for him out of his studio, priests, whom he called “pests,”
out of his life, and Émile Bernard’s theories out of his mind, when they
became too insistent.


This loss of flexible human contact; this inability to master new situations;
this flight into established habits, in a milieu which presented no
problems; this rigid opposition between theory and practice, between the
“hook” and the freedom of a recluse—all these symptoms permit one to
speak of a morbid constitution and more precisely, as, for example, in the
case of El Greco, of schizothymia.

喪失活絡的人際接觸;沒有面對新情境的能力;遁入一個牢固不化的習慣,對任何事都抱著不成問題的態度;堅決反對理論和實際中的「圈套」,以維持隱遁者的自由--以上所有癥兆,我們都可以用一條病理學的規定來說明,就像葛列果(El Greco)的狀況一樣,這些是精神分裂症(schizophrenia)的病兆。

Milieu 环境
This rigid opposition between theory and practice,理论与实践的强烈对立
between the
the rigid opposition between “hook” and the freedom of a recluse 「圈套」与隐居者的自由的强烈对立
a morbid constitution 病态的生理行为

The notion of painting “from nature”
could be said to arise from the same weakness.


His extremely close attention
to nature and to color, the inhuman character of his paintings (he
said that a face should be painted as an object), his devotion to the visible
world: all of these would then only represent a flight from the human
world, the alienation of his humanity.


These conjectures nevertheless do not give any idea of the positive
sense of his work; one cannot thereby conclude that his painting is a phenomenon
of decadence and of what Nietzsche called “impoverished” life
or that it has nothing to say to the educated person.



Zola’s and Émile
Bernard’s belief in Cézanne’s failure probably arise from their having
put too much emphasis on psychology and their personal knowledge of


It is nonetheless possible that Cézanne conceived a form of art
which, while occasioned by his nervous condition, is valid for everyone.



Left to himself, he was able to look at nature as only a human being knows
how to do it.



(跟前面所说的inhuman character 非人文的特性对照起来,耐人寻味:是谁inhuman?塞尚?还是我们自己?)

The sense of his work cannot be determined from his life.


This sense will not become any clearer in the light of art history—
that is, by considering influences (the Italian school and Tintoretto, Delacroix,
Courbet, and the impressionists), Cézanne’s technique, or even his
own pronouncements on his work.


即使从艺术史的观点 ,也就是,考虑到各种影响 (義大利畫派、丁多瑞多Tintoretto、德拉克瓦Delacroix、辜爾貝Courbet、和印象派畫家),塞尚的技法,或甚至从他对自己作品的论断来看,这个意义并未获得任何澄清。

His first pictures—up to about 1870—are painted fantasies: a rape,
a murder.


to the impressionists, he abandoned the baroque technique, which seeks
first to capture movement, for small dabs placed close together and for
patient hatchings.


which 指的是the baroque technique 巴洛克技法,而非印象派画家,后面的动词seeks是单数动词。

It is thanks to the impressionists, and particularly to Pissarro, that Cézanne later conceived painting not as the incarnation of imagined scenes, the projection of dreams outward, but as the exact study of appearances:
less a work of the studio than a working from nature.

由於受到印象派畫家--特別是畢沙羅 (Pissarro) 的影響,塞尚後來認為繪畫並不是想像場景的具象化、或夢幻外顯的結果,而應是表象的精細研究,繪事不僅止於畫室,更應該根據自然。

He quickly parted ways with the impressionists, however. Impressionism
was trying to capture, in the painting, the very way in which objects
strike our eyes and attack our senses. They are therefore almost always executed in broad strokes and
present the moral physiognomy of the actions rather than their visible aspect.


Impressionism represented
them in the atmosphere through which instantaneous perception gives
them to us, without absolute contours, bound together by light and air.

To capture this envelope of light, one had to exclude siennas, ochres, and
black and use only the seven colors of the spectrum.


In order to represent
the color of objects, it was not enough to put their local tone on the canvas,
that is, the color they take on isolated from their surroundings; one
also had to pay attention to the phenomena of contrast which modify local
colors in nature.


Furthermore, by a sort of reversal, every color we see
in nature elicits the vision of its complement; and these complementaries
heighten one another.


To achieve sunlit colors in a picture which will be
seen in the dim light of apartments, not only must there be a green—if
you are painting grass—but also the complementary red which will make
it vibrate.


Finally, the impressionists break down the local tone itself. One
can generally obtain any color by juxtaposing rather than mixing the colors
which make it up, thereby achieving a more vibrant tone.


The result
of these procedures was that the canvas—which no longer corresponded
point by point to nature—restored a general truth of the impression
through the action of the separate parts upon one another.


But at the same
time, depicting the atmosphere and breaking up the tones submerged
the object and caused it to lose its proper weight.

The composition of
Cézanne’s palette leads one to suppose that he had another aim. Instead
of the seven colors of the spectrum, one finds eighteen colors—six reds,
five yellows, three blues, three greens, and one black.


The use of warm colors
and black shows that Cézanne wants to represent the object, to find it
again behind the atmosphere.


Likewise, he does not break up the tone;
rather, he replaces this technique with graduated mixtures, with a progression
of chromatic nuances across the object, with a modulation of colors
which stays close to the object’s form and to the light it receives.


The suppression
of exact contours in certain cases and giving color priority over
the outline obviously do not have the same sense in Cézanne and in impressionism.


The object is no longer covered by reflections and lost in
its relationships to the air and to other objects: it seems subtly illuminated
from within, light emanates from it, and the result is an impression of solidity
and material substance.


lost 在此是过去分词,与前面的covered 对等,no longer covered and lost

Moreover, Cézanne does not give up making
the warm colors vibrate, but achieves this chromatic sensation through
the use of blue.


One must therefore say that Cézanne wished to return to the object
without abandoning the impressionist aesthetic which takes nature as its


Émile Bernard reminded him that, for the classical artists, painting
demanded outline, composition, and distribution of light.


replied: “They created pictures; we are attempting a piece of nature.”


said of the old masters that they “replaced reality with imagination and by
the abstraction which accompanies it.” Of nature, he said, “the artist must
conform to this perfect work of art.


Everything comes to us from nature;
we exist through it; let us forget everything else.” He stated that he wanted
to turn impressionism into “something solid, like the art in the museums.”

His painting would be a paradox: investigate reality without departing
from sensations, with no other guide than the immediate impression of
nature, without following the contours, with no outline to enclose the
color, with no perspectival or pictorial composition.


This is what Bernard
called Cézanne’s suicide: aiming for reality while denying himself the
means to attain it.


This is the reason for his difficulties and for the distortions
one finds in his pictures between 1870 and 1890. Cups and saucers
on a table seen from the side should be elliptical, but Cézanne paints the
two ends of the ellipse swollen and expanded.


The work table in his portrait
of Gustave Geffroy stretches, contrary to the laws of perspective, into
the lower part of the picture.

在古斯塔夫‧喬弗瑞(Gustave Geoffrey)的肖像畫中,那張工作檯拉得非常長,直伸向此畫的底部,這顯然違反了視點法則。

By departing from the outline, Cézanne
would be handing himself over to the chaos of the sensations. Now, the
sensations would capsize the objects and constantly suggest illusions—for
example, the illusion we have when we move our heads that objects themselves
are moving—if our judgment did not constantly set these appearances straight.

According to Bernard, Cézanne engulfed “the painting in
ignorance and his mind in shadows.”


In fact, one can judge his painting in this way only by letting half of
what he said drop away and only by closing one’s eyes to what he painted.


It is clear from his conversations with Émile Bernard that Cézanne
was always seeking to avoid the ready-made alternatives suggested to him:
the senses versus intelligence; the painter who sees versus the painter who
thinks; nature versus composition; primitivism versus tradition.


“We have
to develop an optics,” Cézanne said, “by which I mean a logical vision—
that is, one with nothing absurd.”


“Are you speaking of our nature?” asked
Bernard. Cézanne: “It has to do with both.” “But aren’t nature and art different?”


“I want to unite them. Art is a personal apperception. I place this
apperception in the sensations and I ask intelligence to organize them
into a work.”1


But even these formulas put too much emphasis on the ordinary
notions of “sensibility” or “sensations” and “intelligence”—which
is why Cézanne could not persuade and this is why he liked to paint better.


Rather than apply to his work dichotomies, which moreover belong
more to the scholarly traditions than to the founders—philosophers or
painters—of these traditions, we would do better to let ourselves be persuaded
to the proper sense of his painting, which is to challenge those dichotomies.


Cézanne did not think he had to choose between sensation
and thought, as if he were deciding between chaos and order. He did not
want to separate the stable things which appear before our gaze and their
fleeting way of appearing.


He wanted to paint matter as it takes on form,
the birth of order through spontaneous organization. He makes a basic
distinction not between “the senses” and “intelligence” but rather between
the spontaneous order of perceived things and the human order of
ideas and sciences.

We perceive things; we agree about them; we are anchored
in them; and it is with “nature” as our base that we construct the


Cézanne wanted to paint this primordial world, and this is why
his pictures give us the impression of nature at its origin, while photographs
of the same landscapes suggest man’s works, conveniences, and
imminent presence.

塞尚想要畫出這個原初世界(primordial world),他的畫似乎因此將自然表現得素淨純粹,相對於同樣的風景照片來看,照片本身提示了人工、便捷而急迫的呈現。

Cézanne never wished to “paint like a savage.” He
wanted to put intelligence, ideas, sciences, perspective, and tradition back
in touch with the world of nature which they were intended to comprehend.
He wished, as he said, to confront the sciences with the nature
“from which they came.”


By remaining faithful to the phenomena in his investigations of perspective,
Cézanne discovered what recent psychologists have come to formulate:
the lived perspective, that of our perception, is not a geometric
or photographic one.

由於塞尚一直忠實於現象本身,在他對視點的探究中,他發現了晚近心理學家所發掘出來的--生活的視點(lived perspective)。這是我們日常知覺的真正狀態,它不同於幾何式和攝影式的視點。

In perception, the objects that are near appear
smaller, those far away larger, than they do in a photograph, as we see in
the cinema when an approaching train gets bigger much faster than a
real train would under the same circumstances.


To say that a circle seen
obliquely is seen as an ellipse is to substitute for our actual perception the
schema of what we would have to see if we were cameras. In fact, we see a
form which oscillates around the ellipse without being an ellipse.




In a portrait of Mme Cézanne, the border of the wallpaper on one side of her
body does not form a straight line with that on the other: and indeed it is
known that if a line passes beneath a wide strip of paper, the two visible
segments appear dislocated.



Gustave Geffroy’s table stretches into the bottom
of the picture, and indeed, when our eye runs over a large surface,
the images it successively receives are taken from different points of view,
and the whole surface is warped.



It is true that I freeze these distortions
in repainting them on the canvas; I stop the spontaneous movement in
which they pile up in perception and tend toward the geometric perspective.



This is also what happens with colors. Pink upon gray paper colors
the background green.


Colors 在此是动词,作「改变颜色」解释,而非名词「颜色」,

Academic painting shows the background as gray,
assuming that the picture will produce the same effect of contrast as the
real object.



Impressionist painting uses green in the background in order
to achieve a contrast as brilliant as that of objects in nature. Doesn’t this
falsify the color relationship?


It would if it stopped there, but the painter’s
task is to modify all the other colors in the picture so that they take away
from the green background its characteristics of a real color.



Similarly, it is Cézanne’s genius that when the overall composition of the picture is
seen globally, perspectival distortions are no longer visible in their own
right but rather contribute, as they do in natural vision, to the impression
of an emerging order, an object in the act of appearing, organizing itself
before our eyes.



In the same way, the contour of objects, conceived as a
line encircling the objects, belongs not to the visible world, but to geometry.



belongs 的主词是the contour of objects,而不是a line

If one outlines the contour of an apple with a continuous line, one
turns the contour into a thing, whereas the contour is rather the ideal
limit toward which the sides of the apple recede in depth. To outline no
contour would be to deprive the objects of their identity.



To outline just
one contour sacrifices depth—that is, the dimensions which give us the
thing, not as spread out before us, but as full of reserves and as an inexhaustible


That is why Cézanne follows the swelling of the object in
a colored modulation, and outlines several contours in blue lines. Referred
from one to the other, the gaze captures a contour that emerges from
among them all, just as it does in perception.



Nothing could be less arbitrary
than these famous distortions which, moreover, Cézanne abandoned
in his last period, after 1890, when he no longer filled his canvases with
colors and when he gave up the closely woven texture of his still lifes.


The drawing must therefore result from the colors, if one wants the
world to be rendered in its thickness.


For the world is a mass without gaps,
an organism of colors across which the receding perspective, the contours,
the angles, and the curves are set up as lines of force; the spatial
frame is constituted by vibrating.


“The drawing and the color are no
longer distinct. Gradually as you paint, you draw; the more the colors harmonize,
the more the drawing becomes precise. . . . When the color is at
its richest, the form is at its fullest.”


Cézanne does not try to use color to
suggest the tactile sensations which would give form and depth. These distinctions
between touch and sight are unknown in primordial perception.
It is only as a result of a science of the human body that we finally learn to
distinguish between our senses.


The lived object is not rediscovered or
constructed on the basis of the data of the senses; rather, it presents itself
to us from the start as the center from which the data radiate.


We see the
depth, the smoothness, the softness, the hardness of objects; Cézanne
even claimed that we see their odor.


If the painter wants to express the
world, the arrangement of his colors must bear within this arrangement
this indivisible Whole, or else his painting will only be an allusion to the
things and will not give them in the imperious unity, the presence, the insurpassable
fullness which is for us the definition of the real.


That is why
each brushstroke must satisfy an infinite number of conditions; that is why
Cézanne sometimes meditated for an hour before putting down a certain
stroke, for, as Bernard said, each stroke must “contain the air, the light,
the object, the composition, the character, the drawing, and the style.” Expressing
what exists is an endless task.


Nor did Cézanne neglect the physiognomy of objects and faces: he
simply wanted to capture it emerging from the color.


Painting a face “as
an object” is not to strip it of its “thought.” “I agree that the painter must
interpret it,” said Cézanne, “the painter is not an imbecile.”


But this interpretation
must not be a thought separated from vision. “If I paint all the
little blues and all the little browns, I make it gaze as he gazes.



Who gives
a damn if they have any idea how one can sadden a mouth or make a cheek
smile by wedding a shaded green to a red.”



The mind is seen and read in
the gazes, which are, however, only colored wholes. Other minds are given
to us only as incarnate, as belonging to faces and gestures.



It serves no
purpose to oppose here the distinctions between the soul and the body,
thought and vision, since Cézanne returns to just that primordial experience
out of which these notions are pulled and which gives them to us as



The painter who thinks and seeks the expression first misses
the mystery—renewed every time we gaze at someone—of a person’s appearing
in nature.



In The Wild Ass’s Skin Balzac describes a “tablecloth
white as a layer of fresh-fallen snow, upon which the place settings rose
symmetrically, crowned with blond rolls.”

巴爾札克(Balzac)在『憂鬱人生』(La Peau de chagrin)中描述,「桌布白得如同一層新雪,桌面上的擺設對稱地捲起,像鑲上了一些起伏縐摺。」塞尚說:


“All through my youth,” said
Cézanne, “I wanted to paint that, that tablecloth of fresh-fallen snow. . . . Now I know that one must only want to paint ‘rose, symmetrically, the place settings’ and ‘blond rolls.’

“All through youth, ” said Cézanne, “I wanted to paint that, that tablecloth of new snow… Now I know that one must will only to paint the place-settings rising symmetrically and the blond rolls.



If I painted ‘crowned’ I’m done for, you
understand? But if I really balance and shade my place settings and rolls
as they are in nature, you can be sure the crowns, the snow and the whole
shebang will be there.”


If I paint
‘crowned’ I’ve had it, you understand? But if I really balance and shade my place settings and rolls as they are in nature, then you can be sure that the crowns, the snow, and all the excitement will be there too. ”


We live in the midst of man-made objects, among tools, in houses,
streets, cities, and most of the time we see them only through the human
actions which put them to use. We become used to thinking that all of
this exists necessarily and unshakably


. Cézanne’s painting suspends these
habits and reveals the base of inhuman nature upon which man has installed



This is why Cézanne’s people are strange, as if viewed by a
creature of another species. Nature itself is stripped of the attributes
which make it ready for animistic communions: there is no wind in the
landscape, no movement on the Lac d’Annecy, the frozen objects hesitate
as at the beginning of the world. It is an unfamiliar world in which one
is uncomfortable and which forbids all human effusiveness.

這也就是為何塞尚筆下的人顯得奇怪,好像是不同族群生物眼光下的產物;自然本身被剝卻了所有可用以聯結定形的屬性,地景裡沒有風,安西湖(Lac d’Annecy)面沒有任何波瀾,凝固的對象就如同在世界之始初般的猶豫不安。這樣一個不熟悉的世界,令人覺得不適,也禁止任何人文的情思。



Animism—the doctrine that all natural objects and the universe itself have souls 所有的自然的物体与宇宙本身具有灵魂的信念
Communion—The sharing of personal thoughts and feelings 个人的思想与感觉到分享沟通

If one looks at the work of other painters after seeing Cézanne’s paintings, one feels
somehow relaxed, just as conversations resumed after a period of mourning
mask the absolute change and restore to the survivors their solidity.



But indeed only a human being is capable of such a vision, which penetrates
right to the root of things beneath constituted humanity. All indications
are that animals cannot gaze at [regarder] things, cannot penetrate
them in expectation of nothing but the truth.



Gaze at (regarder)英译gaze at 用斜体字,又括弧附法文,强调「凝视」的意涵不仅是一般的注视或观看。而是,仅是企求真相地注视,才叫凝视。这是具有其他意图性的动物或人的眼睛无法做到的。

Émile Bernard’s statement
that a realistic painter is only an ape is therefore precisely the opposite of
the truth, and one sees how Cézanne was able to revive the classical definition
of art: man added to nature.



added to nature不是过去式,而是过去分词片语,修饰man,整句的定义是Art is man who is added to nature的省略。

Cézanne’s painting denies neither science nor tradition. He went to
the Louvre every day when he was in Paris. He believed that one must
learn how to paint and that the geometric study of planes and forms is necessary.


He inquired about the geological structure of his landscapes.
These abstract relationships must be operative in the act of painting, but
ruled over by the visible world. Anatomy and design are present in each
stroke of his brush just as the rules of the game underlie each stroke of a
tennis match.



What motivates the painter’s movement can never be perspective
alone or geometry alone or the laws governing the breakdown
of colors, or, for that matter, any particular knowledge.



Motivating all the
movements from which a picture gradually emerges there can be only one
motif: the landscape in its totality and in its absolute fullness, precisely
what Cézanne called a “motif.”



He would start by discovering the geological
foundation of the landscape; then, according to Mme Cézanne, he
would halt and gaze, eyes dilated; he “germinated” with the countryside.



What was at issue, all science forgotten, was to recapture, through these sciences,
the constitution of the landscape as an emerging organism.



Science– Ability to produce solutions in some problem domain 智慧,解决难题的能力
Science– A particular branch of scientific knowledge 科学

All the partial views that the gaze catches sight of must be welded together; all
that the eye’s versatility disperses must be reunited; one must, as Gasquet
put it, “join the wandering hands of nature.”



“A minute of the world is
going by which must be painted in its full reality.



” The meditation was suddenly complete: “I have a hold on my motif,” Cézanne would say, and
he explained that the landscape had to be tackled neither too high nor
too low, caught alive in a net which would let nothing escape.



Then he
attacked his picture from all sides at once, using patches of color to surround
his original charcoal sketch of the geological skeleton.



The image saturated itself, composed itself, drew itself, became balanced; it came to
maturity all at once. “The landscape thinks itself in me,” he said, “and I
am its consciousness.” Nothing could be farther from naturalism than this
intuitive science.



Science– Ability to produce solutions in some problem domain 在某个困难的领域,产生解决的能力
Gay science –joyful wisdom 欢愉的智慧

Far from—by no means 绝非是,根本就不是
Nothing could be farther from my intention than to offend you.
=I have no intention at all of offending you.

Art is not imitation, nor is it something manufactured according to the wishes of instinct or good taste.

Art is not imitation, nor is it something manufactured according to the wishes of instinct or good taste.



It is a process of expression. Just as the function of words is to name—that is, to grasp the nature of what appears to us in a confused way and to place it before us as a recognizable object—so it is up to the painter, said Gasquet, to “objectify,” “project,” and “arrest.”

It is a process of expression.
Just as words name—that is, grasp in its nature and place before us
as a recognizable object what appears in a confused way—the painter, said
Gasquet, “objectifies,” “projects,” and “fixes.”



Just as words do not resemble
what they designate, a picture is not a trompe l’oeil.

Words do not took like the things they designate; and a picture is not a trompe-l’oeil.


Trompe-l’œil (French for “deceive the eye”, pronounced [tʁɔ̃p lœj]) is an art technique that uses realistic imagery to create the optical illusion that the depicted objects exist in three dimensions.


Cezanne, in his own words, “writes in painting what had never yet been painted, and turns it into painting once and for all.”We, forgetting the viscous, equivocal appearances, go through them straight to the things they present.

Cézanne, in his own words, “writes in painting what is not yet painted, and turns it into painting
absolutely.” We forget the viscous, equivocal appearances, and by means
of them we go straight to the things they present.



The painter recaptures and converts into visible objects what would, without him, remain walled up in the separate life of each consciousness: the vibration of appearances which is the cradle of things. Only
one emotion is possible for this painter—the feeling of strangeness— and only one lyricism—that of the continual rebirth of existence.

The painter recaptures and converts into visible objects what would, without him, remain
closed up in the separate life of each consciousness: the vibration of appearances
which is the cradle of things. Only one emotion is possible for
this painter—the feeling of strangeness—and only one lyricism—that of
the continual rebirth of existence.



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