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tuous terms in which Mr. Horsfall referred to those extremely popular pleasure-grounds. He took other objections to the


After a brief conversation it was resolved to postpone the further consideration of the subject to the following Monday.

MONDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 1878.—Mr. W. E. A. Axon resumed the conversation on Mr. Horsfall's Art Gallery scheme. The keynote of Mr. Horsfall's proposal was that art should again become a teacher, an agent in the social reform and elevation of the people. That was to say, art should not remain a mere luxury for the educated few, but should be made an instrument of the greatest possible culture amongst the community at large. A gallery formed upon a principle which had such an aim for its object must certainly vary very much from the art galleries hitherto suggested. We had had several schemes propounded in Manchester, one of which was started with a fair prospect of success; he alluded to the proposal made at the close of the Art Treasures Exhibition. A sum of money was subscribed towards the carrying out of that scheme, which was a very good beginning, and had the movement been pushed forward Manchester would probably have had a very valuable and efficient art gallery now. But unfortunately the promoters aimed at something more, and determined that unless they could raise £100,000 they would make no start at all. They had promises of £30,000 or £40,000, which had to be returned to the subscribers because the sum aimed at could not be raised. We might perhaps learn some lessons from the past, and one was that the present time was probably about as unfavourable for promoting a gigantic scheme as the period he had referred to. Bearing this in mind, it seemed to him that the present proposal, viewed from the lowest standpoint, was the most practical suggestion they had had before them for twenty years.

Mr. J. H. E. PARTINGTON said that any remarks he had to make on this subject would of course necessarily be tinged by the professional artistic element. A little shoppiness might be sometimes useful in a discussion of this kind, which was apt to run to waste in washy transcendentalism. Everybody who believed it is the duty of all men to work for the development and happiness of the human race, and to love their neighbour as themselves, would heartily commend the motive of Mr. Horsfall, and would recognise in him a member of a not inconsiderable body of men in this city, who live as if they believed it was their duty to try to leave the world a little better than they found it. On the general question, all good men and true would agree that they could help in the elevation of the people by forming such institutions as art galleries, and if they could do this, it was their duty to do it. But what about the details? If Mr. Horsfall had confined him

self to an assertion of the necessity for such an institution in this city, and had not insisted upon impracticabilities in the working out of his general idea, he for one would have had no antagonistic criticism to offer. But the scheme was not practical in many of its details, and in regard to the vital question of maintenance, he would certainly like a little more explanation than was given in the paper. Artists, they were told, must resume their position as teachers, and the way in which they must teach was indicated in the following passage :—“Let us have pictures painted of the most beautiful places round Manchester, to which workpeople go on holidays. Let the pictures be so accurately painted that we may see what kinds of trees are there; if rocks are shown, what sort of rocks they are; what kind of soil there is; what kind of plants grow in it. Then we will try to make each such picture teach all that it can teach. Under each we must have an outline keysketch with the names of all the principal objects represented in the picture of the trees, of the rocks, of the beds of ferns or flowers, of the kind of soil. If there be a brook we will say why its water is clear, or why it is brown. If the picture is of hills we will have such outlines as Mr. Ruskin has given us in Modern Painters, showing the leading lines of the hills,-those due to the stratification of the rocks, to the way in which they yield to the action of water, of frost, and of air. We will explain how the slopes came to lie as they do, why the soil has its colour, why such and such trees grow in it. Each picture we will supplement in every possible way. Those of trees shall have sketches of the leaves, the branch-forms, the blossoms, the seed of that kind of trees, and similar drawings of the plants and grasses in it. For those which show rocks there shall be drawings of the most characteristic forms of those rocks, of the fossils found in them, and of their crystals. We will have cases of specimens of all these things, if not near the picture, somewhere in the museum, with a reference to them in the description of the picture. We will have, too, those of the maps and sections of the Geological Survey which show the country of which the scene of the picture is part." With regard to this proposition, that pictures should be made to teach botany, geology, mineralogy, chemistry, and other sciences, he thought he might safely say that most artists would find it difficult to understand that this was their business. Their usual notion was that all nature was simply so much raw material which they had a right to use as they liked in expressing their ideas of the beautiful The mere scientific correctness of a picture was an impertinence if insisted upon as an artistic excellence. The business of the artist was not to teach science, but to direct the attention of men to what is beautiful in nature. The principle of arrangement by which pictures were to be scientific primers or lessons in history or morals would not work in an art gallery. After they

had filtered their picture down into all these separate departments of human thought, they would have spoiled its beauty for the unfortunate victim of this dissecting system of education for ever. Within reasonable limits intellectual concentration was the basis of intellectual success. Professor Boyd Dawkins's notion of the arrangement of such a gallery was undoubtedly the right one. He said: "It ought to be so arranged as to give a history of the progress and development of art. For instance, the Salon of Painting should begin with the very best examples of Egyptian and Assyrian art, and should include that of Magna Grecia and Etruria, as well as medieval and modern pictures; the incised figures of animals left behind by the ancient dwellers in caves in different parts of Europe should forn a starting point for the Salon of Sculpture; and so on with the other divisions of art." Mr. Horsfall talked of getting copies of the best pictures for £30 or £50 a piece. That could not be done; indeed they could not copy the best pictures worthily unless they were as clever as the artist himself. As to the maintenance of the proposed gallery, how was it to be kept up? By relying on subscriptions? Men die, and their heirs. don't care to continue the subscription, or subscribers become bankrupt. Perhaps they intended relying on an income from the exhibition itself, and this struck at the very root of the whole scheme which was supposed to help those who cannot or will not pay to go into such exhibitions. By securing the help of the Corporation, and so making the town responsible, must be the means of support or nothing. Let them first build and furnish their gallery and museum, and then ask the Corporation to take it over into their possession, but see that the transfer was made on such conditions as would ensure that the government of the institution shall not rest entirely or even chiefly with them.

Mr. JOHN PLANT strongly condemned the scheme as impracticable. Mr. Horsfall did not give them the slightest idea how the institution was to be carried on, and they all knew there was no chance of carrying forward any project in Manchester unless they could show how it was to be maintained when established.

Mr. T. C. HORSFALL said he was in hopes that many parts of his pamphlet would almost have met the objections made about its principle as well as some of the details of it. Mr. Plant told them that artists could not be expected to teach that which could be more accurately taught by books. But were artists content with the rôle that was being played by them in England? They appeared to him to be living very much up in the clouds, and the product of their art was a plaything which had no connection with English life. It had about as much to do with the real deep feeling of Englishmen, taking the nation as a whole, as the tattooing of the New Zealander had to do with the pulsation of the man's heart. If artists were content to simply spend their lives in

tattooing, and if men were content that the skins of their faces should be tattooed, very good, let the relation of art and life remain what it is; but he confessed, at the same time, that it seemed to him that in times when art was a great attraction, when exhibitions of pictures really did affect men's thoughts for good, men could not have had that feeling of weariness and despair which now came over them on leaving any large exhibition of pictures. He therefore thought it was very desirable that some attempt should be made to bring art again into intimate relationship with the life of the people. If his scheme had any merit in it, it was in the attempt to bring about something more nearly approaching common life than was now possible in English cities. And if it succeeded, it would cause a great number of educated people not only to subscribe money for the purchase of pictures, but to give up part of their time and life to the service of those who have not been educated, and who live under conditions which, whatever political economists might say of them, are adverse to every class of the community, and which make decent human life absolutely impossible. He should think the prostitution and the drunkenness to be seen in the streets of Manchester to-day did not represent anything they could call civilized life. Replying to the remarks of Mr. Plant, relative to the failure of the object which the original promoters of the Crystal Palace had in view, Mr. Horsfall said he failed to see the connection between anything he proposed and the Sydenham scheme. He did not suggest that £500,000 should be invested in buildings which might hereafter become a great restaurant for Manchester. Neither did he propose that the scheme should be taken up by men who hoped to get their five or ten per cent dividend out of it. Therefore he could not see how this scheme could fail in the sense in which the Sydenham scheme failed, that was, because the directors did not get their dividend. With regard to the question of maintenance, that would depend very much upon the extent of the experiment to be made. If they began on a large scale, the expenses would necessarily be large; but if on a smaller scale, the expenses would of course be less; therefore he thought that was a question which it was useless to discuss at present. He believed if it was seen that the scheme was doing good they would find gentlemen willing to give a part of their income annually towards its support, besides gifts of pictures; and if Manchester became generally interested in the experiment they might possibly hand it over to the Corporation ultimately.

Mr. CHARLES ROWLEY, jun., believed that if a scheme of this kind were adequately backed up by public opinion the Corporation would be prepared to consider an appeal for its maintenance by them. It must be remembered that the Council were the servants of the public, and if they had not looked favourably upon such

proposals heretofore it was because they did not feel that the schemes had the support of public opinion. He believed, however, that something might yet be done in this direction, and he intended testing the feeling of the Council on the subject at an early day. There was no doubt Manchester was losing great and valuable works of art for want of a suitable home for them. He had in his possession now a picture worth £1,000, which was to be given to an art gallery whenever one was formed in Manchester; and he knew of another valuable work by a great historical painter which was also intended to be given for the same purpose. these offers would lapse if no Art Gallery was founded. He thought Mr. Horsfall should get his materials ready for such a gallery, and then ask the Corporation to find it a home. There was a spirit growing up in the Council which led him to look forward hopefully towards the accomplishment of such an object. The discussion, on the motion of Mr. GEORGE MILNER, was again adjourned.


MONDAY, NOVEMBER 26.-The PRESIDENT (Mr. J. H. Nodal), in calling upon Mr. Milner to open the conversation, expressed a hope that the speakers would bear in mind that Mr. Horsfall's scheme differed essentially from that proposed by Mr. Thomas Fairbairn at the close of the Art Treasures Exhibition. That was a proposal to establish an art gallery to be managed by the town, if possible; at any rate it was to be a public gallery of art on an extensive scale; but Mr. Horsfall's proposal was to establish a small gallery for teaching purposes, and with the object of bringing the more cultivated and artistic classes of the community into closer connection and helpful relations with the manual labourers and people with scanty leisure. The two schemes were by no means incompatible with each other or antagonistic; they might exist 'side by side, for they could do with both a large town gallery and an art museum. In any remarks made upon Mr. Horsfall's proposal, it was desirable that its distinctive character should be borne in mind.

The HONORARY SECRETARY (Mr. Axon) read a letter from Professor W. Boyd Dawkins, in which, after remarking that Mr. Horsfall's scheme had his heartiest sympathy, he said: The main outlines of it coincide with my own views on the question, although there are practical difficulties in the way, say of grafting music on to art. I do not see that his scheme is in the least degree antagonistic to that of the School of Art, or to that which I hope eventually to see carried out in Owens College. We all, I am sure, wish to see the general culture of the district raised through art and science, and this end, it seems to me, can be better attained by combination than by isolated effort. It will, however, never be realised by a mere multiplication of the art collections


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