Thursday, April 21, 2005

The Glocal Book:"The Book of Tea" by Okakura Kakuzou(Tenshin)-No.89

Mistake of Confusing Art with Archaeology

「Another common mistake is that of confusing art with archaeology.

The veneration born of antiquity is one of the best traits in the human character, and fain would we have it cultivated to a greater extent.

The old masters are rightly to be honoured for opening the path to future enlightment.

The mere fact that have passed unscathed through centuries of criticism and come down to us still covered with glory commands our respect.

But we should be foolish indeed if we valued their achievement simply on the score of age.

Yet we allow our historical sympathy to override our aesthetic discrimination.

We offers flowers of approbation when the artist is laid in his grave.」

(From the Book of Tea, pp.85-86,Charles E. Tuttle Co., Rutland, Vermont-Tokyo, Japan)

The facts of confusing art with archaeolog might be more common at the present day.

We must sincerely listen to what he mentioned.

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Picture: Kayokukan by Katashi Oyama
Image Designer: Izumi Mori

Monday, April 18, 2005

The Glocal Book:"The Book of Tea" by Okakura Kakuzou(Tenshin)-No.88

The Majorities Want The Costly,
Not The Refined; The Fashionable,
Not The Beautiful

「It is much to be regretted that so much of the apparent enthusiasm for art at the present day has no foundation in real feeling.

In this democratic age of ours men clamour for what is popularly considered the best, regardless of their feelings.

They want the costly, not the refined; the fashionable, not the beautiful.

To the masses, contemplation of illstrated periodicals, the worthy product of their own industrialism, would give more digestible food for artistic enjoyment than the early Italians or the Ashikaga masters, whom they prettend to admire.

The name of the arist is more important to them than the quality of the work.

As a Chinese critic complained many centuries ago, "People criticise a picture by their ear."

It is this lack of genuine appreciation that is responsible for the pseudo-classic horrors that to-day greet us whereever we turn.」
(From The Book of Tea, p.85, Charles E. Tuttle Co, Rutland, Vermont-Tokyo, Japan)

It is surprising that from his generation, the evaluation of art is already the usages of popularity.

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Picture: With Every Good by Katashi Oyama
Image Designer: Izumi Mori