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    Description

    Jean Dubuffet. Typed and Autograph Letter Signed Twice.
    "Jean D" and "J.D." Two pages (one and a half typed in red ink and half handwritten in blue ink) in French, with postal cover, 5.5" x 8.25", Paris; Sunday, June 18, 1944. In this letter, addressed to Madeleine Rousseau (1895-1980), a painter, writer, professor of visual arts at the Institut des Hautes Études Cinématographiques in Paris, and manager of the publication Le Musée Vivant (1937-1969), Dubuffet writes [English translation], "Last night was very nice - keep me informed of the disagreement with Ratton [Charles Ratton (1895-1986), collector, art dealer, and ardent supporter of Dubuffet's Art Brut], I'm keenly interested. This morning I saw Jean Blanzat and we talked for fifteen minutes at the foot of his stairway and he told me a number of remarkable things on Sartre, Camus, on Faulkner and the other American novelists, on Toulet [Paul-Jean Toulet], on surrealism, on sexuality and homosexuality. I am confused, stunned. How is it that there are people for whom everything is so luminously obvious while I do not understand anything, or understand with difficulty. For whatever my art is worth, and it is quite bothersome ["tiring"?] in some cases, what a blessing that it puts me in contact with folks who can explain to me in fifteen minutes so much intellectual nourishment! And you, too! It is the success of my paintings that put me in contact with you, too! Let us bless those paintings! And even if in future they are maligned and turn out to be forgetful, I am living in the moment and hooray for the present, I do not give a damn about the future. Let us leave the uncrackable nut of the future [literal translation] to Gr [?] and let us devour together, sweet Madeleine, the present moment. You are exceptional in how swiftly you shift your opinion on this or that person, you know with what tone you spoke of it just three weeks ago [angle of paper makes end of a few lines illegible] feel suddenly a completely different way [angle illegible] with simplicity; that is rare, and I [illegible] am very, very touched by it. Oh, but playful stubbornness you have also, which I also appreciate and that you express in certain moments when you remember to make me grumble (which I do quite regularly, I admit) and all this is funny, delicious, and sweet and I take such pleasure in it!" [After his signature, Dubuffet continues with a handwritten postscript.] "Careful, it is not our art which is decadent and overrich. It is Raphael and Bouguereau who are decadent and overrich. Ours is a return to origins that are most legitimate and justified. It is time to say so forcefully. Our art is an art of haute époque."

    Jean Philippe Arthur Dubuffet (1901-1985) was a French painter and sculptor. His idealistic approach to aesthetics embraced so called "low art" and eschewed traditional standards of beauty in favor of what he believed to be a more authentic and humanistic approach to image-making. He is best known for founding the art movement Art Brut and for the collection of works-Collection de l'art brut-that this movement spawned. Dubuffet enjoyed a prolific art career, both in France and in America.

    Condition: The letter has a light vertical fold and slight paper loss on upper right hand corner and two small hole on the bottom left corner where a pin attached the letter to the postal cover, which also has two holes made by the pin. The tape on the back of the envelope was probably used by Dubuffet to reinforce the glue to seal the letter. Overall good.


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    Proxy Bidding Ends
    September
    4th Wednesday 2:50 pm CT
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    4th Wednesday
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    Additional Location Info:
    Ukrainian Institute of America at The Fletcher-Sinclair Mansion2 East 79th StreetNew York, NY 10075

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