47 
wore a bearskin cap. One o£ his friends confided to me that he had a well- 
garnished bankbook hidden in the lining of his cap. On the occasion of a 
Dada festival, he gave us a souvenir thirty yards long, painted in the colors of 
the rainbow and covered with sublime inscriptions. One evening we decided 
to give Dada a little modest private publicity. Going from one beer hall to 
another on the Limmatkai, he carefully opened the door, shouted in a loud 
precise voice: “Vive Dada!” and closed the door just as carefully. The diners 
gaped dropping their sausages. What could be the meaning of this mysterious 
cry from the mouth of a mature, respectable-looking man who didn’t look at 
all like a charlatan or a métèque. At this period Giacometti painted stars of 
flowers, cosmic conflagrations, tongues of flame, fiery pits. For us the interest 
of his paintings lies in that they proceed from pure color and imagination. 
Giacometti is also the first who attempted to create a moving object; this 
he did with a clock metamorphosed by the addition of forms and colors. In 
spite of the war, it was a delightful period, and we shall look back on it as an 
idyll in the next world war when, transformed into hamburger steak, we shall 
be scattered to the four winds, [illustrations 2-8] 
I became more and more removed from aesthetics 
I became more and more removed from aesthetics. I wanted to find another 
order, another value for man in nature. He was no longer to be the measure 
of all things, no longer to reduce everything to his own measure, but on the 
contrary, all things and man were to be like nature, without measure. I wanted 
to create new appearances, extract new forms from man. This tendency took 
shape in 1917 in my “objects.” Alexandre Partens wrote of them in the Al 
manack Dada: “It was the distinction of Jean Arp to have at a certain moment 
discovered the true problem in the craft itself. This allowed him to feed it 
with a new, spiritual imagination. He was no longer interested in improving, 
formulating, specifying an aesthetic system. He wanted immediate and direct 
production, like a stone breaking away from a cliff, a bud bursting, an animal 
reproducing. He wanted objects impregnated with imagination and not 
museum pieces, he wanted animalesque objects with wild intensities and 
colors, he wanted a new body among us which would suffice unto itself, an 
object which would be just as well off squatting on the corners of tables as 
nestling in the depths of the garden or staring at us from the wall. ... To 
him the frame and later the pedestal seemed to be useless crutches. ...” 
Even in my childhood, the pedestal enabling a statue to stand, the frame 
enclosing the picture like a window, were for me occasions for merriment
	        

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