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Fernand Leger

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There was no telling who this head, or this leg, or that arm, belonged to.. ..So I scattered the limbs in my painting and realized that in this way I was getting much closer to the truth than Michelangelo did when he concentrated on every separate muscle.
--
as quoted from the exhibition catalogue Fernand Legér, Paris, 1956

 
Fernand Leger

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I do both: I make preliminary drawings, other times I paint directly, other times I start a painting and then paint it out so that it becomes another painting or nothing at all. If a painting doesn’t work, throw it out. When I work from preliminary sketches, I don’t just enlarge these drawings, but plan my areas in a large painting by using small drawings for separate areas. I combine them in a final painting, often adding to or subtracting from the original sketches.. ..There are certain canvases here in my studio - the little one over there – that I’ve worked on for a good six months – painting most of it out and then painting it over and over again. I think I’ve got it now. (1958)

 
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The truth may be puzzling. It may take some work to grapple with. It may be counterintuitive. It may contradict deeply held prejudices. It may not be consonant with what we desperately want to be true. But our preferences do not determine what's true. We have a method, and that method helps us to reach not absolute truth, only asymptotic approaches to the truth — never there, just closer and closer, always finding vast new oceans of undiscovered possibilities. Cleverly designed experiments are the key.

 
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Undoubtedly, one comes closer to the truth when one sees history as the expression of the class struggle rather than a series of private quarrels among kings and nobles. But precisely because such an analysis of history comes closer to the truth, it is more dangerous. It gives the illusion of full knowledge; it supplies answers to all questions, answers which merely run around in a circle repeating a few formulas.

 
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