P. M. Ritchie Writings

Postcards from Paris 1935-1936

"I love the hands more than almost anything else in the world, and these and 'Le Main de Diéu' both are so real that you want to reach out and touch them.

The idea and the work both together form something that remains with you."



Wed., Dec 4, Paris

"Pisanello's drawings are both strong and delicate at once and give one a feeling for agility and sterngth at the same time. The same with his modeling on coins.

Italian Painters and artists have that extraordinary mixture of strength and delicacy and I think that Pisanello's works of art illustrate this meaning very well."



"Modern art spells something that is truly wonderful, and Degas is one of the foremost painters of the time.

He has both action and drawing in his paintings—these two things don't often go together—he shows the feeling of muscles without being anatomical and his work, though at first has an appearance of a sort of roughness, when looked at carefully and appreciatively, looks as if it was really done with care and thought."



"One of the greek vases that I studied at The Study—was wonderful to see the original—it is truly a beautiful piece of work and the design and modeling outstanding.

Have come to a definite conclusion that men today are much less careful about how they make beautiful things as long as they create something very quickly. For this is an age of speed and not like other days when men took both time and trouble to construct things of beauty."



Thursday, Oct 24, 1935

"This huge painting from the Gallerie de Batailles is a wonderful study of expressions and shows in an apealing way the sincere worship and admiration of the people for Jeanne D'Arc.

D'Arc herself is carefully painted and the whole picture is expressive and full of feeling—note monks head on right and two women on left—."



"Rembrandt was given a talent by God, that everyone can or should appreciate—his portraits are so full of feeling, life, strength and all that makes portraits live. It is wrong for me to try and criticize him, and can only say that I get more pleasure out of looking at one of his pictures than twenty of many many other artists of both his time and ours today."



Wed., Nov 27

"Have always loved Franz Hals and particularly this one. In colour it is beautiful both in colour feeling and strength—some might say that it is inclined to be 'rough' (in more ways than one) but it illustrates the type of girl of the time and is a wonderful portrait.



"The action in this piece of sculpture makes me want to cry."


Postcards to Percy Ritchie while in Paris

"Dear Percy,

Here is Michelangelo's sculpturesque Holy Family—in the wonderful Uffizi gallery. It's quite wonderful, isn't it!

If postcards interest you, I'll try to send you a collection of interesting ones that you can keep. I'll begin, next time, with the early Italians, and send you a sort of representative group of Italian painting.

Much love, El"



"Dearest Percy,

This is a wonderful "strong" Raphael. It is only about a foot square, but dominates as if it covered the whole wall.

I guess Helen is in Paris now. If you see her tell her I am writing immediately. Are your parents coming soon?

Love, El"