Sunday, October 28

the glance

When I arrived at Picasso's on Rue de la Boétie I was as deeply moved and as full of respect as though I were having an audience with the Pope.

"I have come to see you," I said, "before visiting the Louvre."

"You're quite right" he answered.

I brought a small painting, carefully packed, which was called The Girl of Figuera. He looked at it for at least fifteen minutes, and made no comment whatever. After which we went up to the next story, where for two hours Picasso showed me quantities of his paintings. He kept going back and forth, dragging out great canvases which he placed against the easel. Then he went to fetch others among an infinity of canvases stacked in rows against the wall. I could see that he was going to enormous trouble. At each new canvas he cast me a glance filled with a vivacity and an intelligence so violent that it made me tremble. I left without in turn having made the slightest comment.

At the end, on the landing of the stairs, just as I was about to leave we exchanged a glance which meant exactly,

"You get the idea?"

"I get it!"

-- Salvador Dali The Secret Life of Salvador Dali
Translated by Haakon M. Chevalier

The Girl of Figuera