Travel Reference
In-Depth Information
comparison or justification. It is unique and doesn't match the stride
either of the avant-garde or of romantic nostalgia. René Richard develops
his own pictorial language; his painting asserts itself in a personal aes-
thetic ... the works put us in the presence of an entire life, they testify to
an individual in osmosis with his whole environment … The landscape
is inscribed on the canvas in broad strokes that passion alone can
Extending his hand towards his near perfect painting, Pierre is struck
down by another heart attack and falls before his work. As the moun-
tain fades, the narrator asks, on behalf of all artists: 'Qui, dans les
brumes, la retrouvera!' (171; Who, in the mists, would ever find it again!
[186]) Yet the exclamation point rather than a question mark seems to
suggest a call to action to both writer and reader. Roy ends on the am-
bivalent note of the simultaneous power yet fragility not only of the
creative act, but also of human existence. 28
Through the intermediary of art, the individual discovers the iden-
tity of nature, the self, and others, as well as their common condition of
suffering and solitude; and yet through the magic of art, the painter,
writer, or reader surpasses these limits to achieve a solidarity with na-
ture, within one's self, and with others that goes beyond the human
condition towards the artistic ideal, however tentative and tenuous.
The same can be said for the act of reading, in which we often appear to
seize the message of a profound work like La montagne secrète , at the
very moment that it eludes us, a sort of perpetual 'Paradis perdu,' to
borrow the final words of Marie Grenier-Francœur, 29 which resonate
with the title of Anne Hébert's Le premier jardin , another artist's identi-
tary quest, to which we turn in the next chapter.
Search WWH ::

Custom Search