Undated manuscript by Breton about Picabia.
A ‘ignited eye’ in ‘perpetual migration’ is how Breton evokes Francis Picabia, a painter whose intelligence and capacity for constant renewal inspired consistently admiring texts ever since their meeting at the start of the 1920s. ‘You have never stopped running’, he already wrote in 1922, in an essay later republished in Les Pas perdus; at the start of the 1950s, at the moment when death brought this to an end, it was still Picabia’s perpetual movement to which he would pay tribute. [Atelier André Breton website, 2005]
Handwritten manuscript, undated.
- 1/2 page in-4° manuscript in ink by Breton, with deletions and corrections, relating to Francis Picabia:
‘The contour of a fine summer’s day, with time devoted to love and to games, with every scintillation finding its course around a luxuriously served platter: that’s the closest outline to Picabia for me when I think back to our earliest meetings. His eye, the most ignited one I’ve ever seen, was in perpetual migration and even his voice, so adept at the nuances of intimacy, refuses to settle, so much is his entire faith gambled on the insatiability of desire. Next to those – and they are numerous – who used to exhaust themselves trying to keep up with such a pace, it’s to be expected that he could be thought of as not being human, yet affixed to what he was saying, a certain framework, no-one could be more emotional: “I am the collaborator with the factory that drills out the cylinders of happiness my mind has dreams of insane hotels...”.’ [Auction catalogue, 2003]
Translated by Krzysztof Fijalkowski
Ms et Ts - encre noire
|Breton Auction, 2003||Lot 2324|
|Keywords||Criticism, Work notes, Painting|
|Categories||Manuscripts, Andre Breton's Manuscripts|
|Set||[AB's Manuscripts] Miscellaneous Manuscripts|