Caravanning with Wep – Sunday, 11th July 1937, Queensland, near Warwick, a philosophy on the art of nature

Derelict Cart, Queensland

11th July, Sunday

Queensland, near Warwick

Am camped alongside road, beneath still and flawless sky. The new moon sinking, leaves the world to starlight and quiet wonder. I clean my teeth beneath the aloof light of the thousand stars and am of the sudden impressed with their utter remoteness and unconcern with the fate of man, their unwinking & uncurious gaze. Am abased with feelings of pellucid beauty and my own futility. The remote crystalline beauty of the starry night as a model of beauty, the work of art (for me) as akin. The same detachment, the sufficiency of the thing in itself. The clarity, the utter remoteness; indifference towards the reaction of the beholder.  The essence of the thing, ART which remains in work after all extraneous matter has been subtracted. Remote, clear, cold architectural FORM. How I’d like to express that remoteness, indifference which is nature. Express the very stillness. The apparent impassive immobility of mountains, windless trees and placid sky. And yet the knowledge of the life beneath it all, sleeping, awaiting a call to action. Sensed as though the eyes are attuned to the vision of time. The art that gives me this sense of beauty I call great. Its characteristics are monumental. The appearance of complete repose, yet implying (and possessing) life that is strength. A product of infinite understanding & subtlety without denoting a simplicity of mind and vision. Simplicity as kinship with nature, life, being a part of it. Can it be produced when man lacks inner conviction, a way of life, a credo, an identification with the credo of his civilisation, a belief, a will-to-something which is inherent in the growth of a culture? When national will-to-something has disappeared & has left men bereft of point in life?

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