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Howard Hodgkin on Seurat

Part 1: Drawing and Painting

Seurat is often seen as a painters' painter. What qualities do you admire in him?

What I admire in him most is his instant ability in the face of nature, whether he's drawing or painting, to make a language of his own. His studies from nature, as with the Man Painting a Boat are not really studies from nature at all; they're little pochade, they're beginnings of paintings, remarkably different in their effect from the effects of nature.

I never thought that Impressionism was much to do with the effects of nature, but more with those of time. Seurat developed this with his own sensibility, which seemed to come from somewhere else; he came out of an academic background but transformed that into something else.

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