Saturday, 18 June 2011

Notes from "The painter of modern life" by Charles Baudelaire

Beauty is made up, on the one hand, of an element that is eternal and invariable, though to determine how much of it there is is extremely difficult, and, on the other, of a relative circumstantial element, which we may like to call, successively or at one and the same time, contemporaneity, fashion, morality, passion. Without this second element, which is like the amusing, teasing, appetite-whetting coating of the divine cake, the first element would be indigestible, tasteless, unadapted and inappropriate to human nature. I challenge anyone to find any sample whatsoever of beauty that does not contain these two elements.

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