“To depict nature, we can only try. Nature doesn’t have any straight lines. It doesn’t follow the rules of perspective.” (David Hockney)
(Jonathan Jones, “David Hockney urges us to escape lockdown through a pencil,” theguardian.com, 4-4-20)
This comment by Hockney reminded me of the work of the Catalan architect Antoni Gaudí. The non-straightness of lines in nature was a dominating principle of his building designs, of which there are eminent examples in Barcelona and other Spanish cities.
My first taste of a Gaudí creation was when I visited an acquaintance who lived in La Pedrera, an apartment building Gaudí designed. I had just arrived in Barcelona to spend my junior year in college there in the Facultad de Filosofía y Letras. I lived in a pensión at Ronda de la Universidad 22-B near the Plaza de Catalunya. It was a short walk to my classes.
(c) 2020 JMN
Technically, nature has straight lines and follows the rules of perspective. Also, Jonathan Jones is a horrible art critic. Not only does he hate Francis Bacon (a litmus test for ideologue critics), but he’s the one who said, “artists who can paint are relics of another age”. He may look at toad-like as Robert Hughes in his last decade, but the comparison ends there. Jones is a joke, and a nasty one.
That said, Gaudi is magnificent.