July 18, 1997

(…) There is in these things a second concept of reality. Reality is not identical with its outer image, with its objective appearance. It is indeterminate as contrasted to objectivity; it is indefinite and is often just a single problem. Hence all talking about “realism” goes to blazes. “Realism” is not the exterior descriptive art but rather art that interprets the visible and common, art that fluctuates around its values. And if “realism” is indeed something purely psychological / take Van Gogh for example/, then all talking about “naturalism” is nonsense. In fact this is a dreadful notion which gathers in one Rembrandt, El Greco and the impressionists, taking into account their “compliance with nature”. But a single quality is not enough to make a classification because in this way one who has had a bath

Portrait of an Engagements, 1966, oil on canvas, 49/60


and one who has drowned will belong to the same class: “wet”. If your works of art make me think on the subject, this means they are genuine – because a genuine work brings you back to fundamental problems: what is art, what is the meaning of art, questions fiercely debated through the centuries.



From a letter of Vladimir Svintila
writer and Art critic




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