Baudelaire à quoi bon la critique translation .pdf

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I sincerely believe that the best criticism is criticism that is entertaining and poetic; not a cold analytical
type of criticism, which, claiming to explain everything, is devoid of hatred and love, and deliberately rids
itself of any trace of feeling, but, since a fine painting is nature reflected by an artist; the best critical
study, I repeat, will be the one that is that painting reflected by an intelligent and sensitive mind. Thus the
best accounts of a picture may well be a sonnet on an elegy.
But that type of criticism is destined for books of poetry and readers of poetry. As to criticism proper, I
hope philosophers will understand what I am about to say; to be in focus, in other words to justify itself,
criticism must be partial, passionate, political, that is to say it must adopt an exclusive point of view,
provided always that the one adopted opens up the widest horizons.
Exalting the merits of line to the detriment of colour, or exalting colour to the detriment of line, doubtless
that is a point of view; but it's neither kind nor fair, and is evidence of a pitiful ignorance of the intended
One cannot know to what extent nature has blended the sense of line and of colour into each mind, and by
what mysterious process she executes this fusion, the result of which is a painting.

Translation by P.E.Charvet in 'Selected Writings on Art and Artists', 1972

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