Full text: The little review (8 (1922), 2)

14 
her philosophical lover in one of the celebrated dialogues on 
The Isle of Naxos. “I find something pleasant and agreeable in 
thy ears, Ariadne. Why are they not still longer?” 
Nietszche when he recalled this anecdote put into the mouth 
of Dionysius the condemnation of Greek art. 
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Let us add, in order that today nothing more than an historical 
interest may attach to the utopian expression:—the fourth di 
mension—which must be noted and explained, that it was only a 
manifestation of the aspirations and inquietudes of a large num 
ber of young artists contemplating the Egyptian Negro and 
Oceanian sculptures, meditating on the works of science, and 
awaiting a sublime art. 
IV 
Wishing to attain to the proportions of the ideal, not limiting 
themselves to humanity, the young painters offer us works which 
are more cerebral than sensual. To express the grandeur of 
metaphysical forms, they withdraw further and further from the 
former art of optical illusions and local proportions. This is 
why the present art, even if it is not the direct emanation of deter 
mined religious beliefs, presents nevertheless several character 
istics of the Great Art, that is to say, of religious art. 
V 
It is the social function of the great poets and the great painters 
to renew unceasingly the appearance which nature assumes in 
the eyes of men. 
Without the poets, without the artists, men would quickly tire 
of the monotony of natural phenomena. 
The sublime idea which they have of the universe would come 
tumbling down with a vertiginous rapidity. 
The order which appears in nature and which is only an effect 
of art would immediately vanish. Everything would break up 
in chaos. No more seasons, no more civilisation, no more 
thought, no more humanity, no more of life itself; impotent 
obscurity would reign forever. By mutual consent the poets
	        

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