Oscar goes to the shore

So the internet’s not working at home this week, which has put a major cramp on my blogging. But I don’t care! Because a) the Sharks beat the Kings in the first round and b) someone has done this:

There are more, but this should be enough to get you started. ISN’T THIS THE BEST THING EVER?

Thanks to Sean Ferrell for opening my eyes to this.

Wilde Wednesday: Preface to Dorian Gray

Wilde Wednesdays have kind of fallen by the wayside, BUT I AM GOING TO BRING THEM BACK. STARTING NOW.

With one of my favorite pieces of writing ever in the world, the preface to the Picture of Dorian Gray. I truly love this.

The artist is the creator of beautiful things.

All art is quite useless.

To reveal art and conceal the artist is art’s aim.

The critic is he who can translate into another manner or a new material his impression of beautiful things. The highest as the lowest form of criticism is a mode of autobiography.

Those who find ugly meanings in beautiful things are corrupt without being charming. This is a fault.

Those who find beautiful meanings in beautiful things are the cultivated. For these there is hope. They are the elect to whom beautiful things mean only beauty.

There is no such thing as a moral or an immoral book. Books are well written, or badly written. That is all.

The nineteenth century dislike of realism is the rage of Caliban seeing his own face in a glass.

The nineteenth century dislike of romanticism is the rage of Caliban not seeing his own face in a glass.

The moral life of man forms part of the subject-matter of the artist, but the morality of art consists in the perfect use of an imperfect medium.

No artist desires to prove anything. Even things that are true can be proved.

No artist has ethical sympathies. An ethical sympathy in an artist is an unpardonable mannerism of style.

No artist is ever morbid. The artist can express everything.

Thought and language are to the artist instruments of an art. Vice and virtue are to the artist materials for an art.

From the point of view of form, the type of all the arts is the art of the musician.

From the point of view of feeling, the actor’s craft is the type.

All art is at once surface and symbol.

Those who go beneath the surface do so at their peril.

Those who read the symbol do so at their peril.

It is the spectator, and not life, that art really mirrors.

Diversity of opinion about a work of art shows that the work is new, complex, and vital. When critics disagree, the artist is in accord with himself.

We can forgive a man for making a useful thing as long as he does not admire it. The only excuse for making a useless thing is that one admires it intensely.

it’s a wiiiiilde wednesday!!

oscar beardsley

Aubrey Beardsley illustrated Oscar Wilde’s Salome, creating one of my favorite books ever because omg Beardsley is a genius illustrator. However—and perhaps not surprisingly—the two ended up not getting along very well. Wilde complained about the art, and in retaliation Beardsley drew this cartoon, responding to Wilde’s claim that he never did any research.

Why is it always the most volatile of artistic relationships that produce some of the greatest art?

another Wilde Wednesday

April 1891
To Arthur Conan Doyle

Between me and life there is a mist of words always. I throw probability out of the window for the sake of a phrase, and the chance of an epigram makes me desert truth. Still I do aim at making a work of art, and I am really delighted that you think my treatment subtle and artistically good. The newspapers seem to me to be written by the prurient for the Philistine. I cannot understand how they can treat Dorian Gray as immoral. My difficulty was to keep the inherent moral subordinate to the artistic and dramatic effect, and it still seems to me that the moral is too obvious.
Oscar Wilde

From this book.