+ It is by universal misunderstanding that all
agree. For if, by ill luck, people understood
each other, they would never agree.
+ There exist only three beings worthy of respect:
the priest, the soldier, the poet. To know, to
kill, to create.
+ Unable to suppress love, the Church wanted at
least to disinfect it, and it created marriage.
+ Modernity is the transitory, the fugitive, the
contingent, which make up one half of art, the
other being the eternal and the immutable. This
transitory fugitive element, which is constantly
changing, must not be despised or neglected.
+ It is necessary to work, if not from inclination,
at least from despair. Everything considered,
work is less boring than amusing oneself.
+ Genius is childhood recalled at will.
+ Genius is nothing but youth recaptured.
+ Genius is only childhood recovered at will,
childhood now gifted to express itself with the
faculties of manhood and with the analytic mind
that allows him to give order to the heap of unwittingly
+ Personally, I think that the unique and supreme
delight lies in the certainty of doing 'evil'
and men and women know from birth that
all pleasure lies in evil.
+ Which one of us has not dreamed, on ambitious
days, of the miracle of a poetic prose: musical,
without rhythm or rhyme; adaptable enough and
discordant enough to conform to the lyrical movements
of the soul, the waves of revery, the jolts of
+ The will to work must dominate, for art is long
and time is brief.
+ The finest trick of the devil is to persuade
you that he does not exist.
+ Imagination is the queen of truth, and possibility
is one of the regions of truth. She is positively
akin to infinity.
+ Delacroix was passionately in love with passion,
and coldly determined to seek the means of expressing
passion in the most visible manner. In this dual
character, be it said in passing, we find the
two distinguishing marks of the most substantial
geniuses, extreme geniuses.
+ Alas, the vices of man, as horrifying as they
are presumed to be, contain proof (if only in
their infinite expansiveness!) of his bent for
+ An artist is an artist only because of his exquisite
sense of beauty, a sense which shows him intoxicating
pleasures, but which at the same time implies
and contains an equally exquisite sense of all
deformities and all disproportion.