Abstract chickens on orange, a naïve gleaming fish facing a fanged monster, floral still lifes, caricatures. Oil on canvas, oil on Pavatex, gouache, pencil, colored print. Max von Moos, Ludwig Weninger, Lucien Mainssieux, Rudolf Muchow, Josef Maria Schröder. And in-between, two Mickey Mouses with bared male torsos and signs round their necks asking “Where will you spend eternity?”
I can’t answer this question in Chantal Barras’ picture. My imagination is presumably too rooted in the here and now of life. And part of this life is collecting art.
Having pictures around me is as much a matter of course as a personal library is to a writer. Collecting starts in the mind. What an infant collects and connects in his head in the first years of life is of an immeasurable quantity, variety and complexity. The first place we keep our treasures is in the mind.
Much of my collection and many of my own works hang in ever-changing arrangements on a number of walls at my disposal. We may be able to look at works and artists with fewer preconceptions if we approach them without systematizing or ordering them according to any familiar criteria.
This view is reflected in the arrangement of the pictures in this book. In changing, intuitive configurations they obviate the compulsive craving for completeness and categorization in conventional collecting.