New Truth

In New Truth we celebrate travel. Carrying this wallet is a reminder and spur to engage in travel, to glean all the benefits it brings; new sights, sounds, new perspectives - new truths. 

However, in this instance we aren’t referring to physical travel but to traveling somewhere new through perception - through trying on ‘new eyes’. In particular, we look to the artist (painters, writers, actors, directors...) to help us make these vital journeys.

New Truth’s words are a popular adaptation of a phrase which comes from Marcel Proust’s celebrated masterpiece In Search Of Lost Time. They encapsulate Prousts thinking on art and also his core philosophy on how best to live life - a key theme emergent throughout the novel.

The passage where these words are from goes on to state that with great artists ‘we really do fly from star to star’.

For Proust the artist helps us tear through the stifling veil of habit and familiarity which block our appreciation of beauty, people - all that’s around us. Proust was influenced by John Ruskin and he saw the artist's responsibility was to confront the appearance of nature, deduce its essence and retell or explain that essence in the work of art. 

Sophie Taeuber-Arp worked prolifically on this idea of creating ‘New Eyes’ and sweeping away old habit and norms. She played key roles in many of the Avant-Garde movements of the early 20th century. Her work uniquely crossed disciplinary boundaries, opening new perspectives and possibilities. She was dedicated to the development of the language of abstraction, in particular through the Contructivist, Concrete and Geometric Art movements. 

In this painting, Gradation In Colours, she communicates her inter-disciplinary influence from textile design and subtle understanding of the interplay between colour and form. The symmetry combined with the undulating, incrementally shifting curved shapes give a sense of playful purpose, momentum and energy. She speaks eloquently and profoundly with a new language here - there is no 'real world' represenation in this work. In what it is and what it achieves it expresses what Taeuber-Arp spent her whole life doing - communicating New Truth.  

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The Artwork

The Artist

The Words

The Writer

"The intrinsic decorative urge should not be eradicated. It is one of humankind's deep-rooted, primordial urges. Primitive people decorated their implements and cult objects with a desire to beautify and is a sense emanating from the urge for perfection and creative accomplishment."

"The wish to produce beautiful things — when that wish is true and profound — falls together with [man's] striving for perfection."

"All around her is the radiance of the sun... She is full of invention, caprice, fantasy. . . . It was a dance full of flashes and fishbones, of dazzling lights, a dance of penetrating intensity. The lines of her body break, every gesture decomposes into a hundred precise, angular, incisive movements. The buffoonery of perspective, lighting, and atmosphere is for her hypersensitive nervous system the pretext for drollery full of irony and wit. The figures of her dance are at once mysterious, grotesque, and ecstatic."

Hugo Ball, on Taeuber-Arp dancing to his sound poems in 1917

"It is not possible for us to take ourselves back to the exact circumstances of those in a past era, attempting to create art in the style of the past is always inauthentic"

“Every reader, as he reads, is actually the reader of himself. The writer's work is only a kind of optical instrument he provides the reader so he can discern what he might never have seen in himself without this book. The reader's recognition in himself of what the book says is the proof of the book's truth.” 
― Time Regained

“Love is a striking example of how little reality means to us.” 
― In Search of Lost Time

“We are healed of a suffering only by experiencing it to the full.” 

"It is always thus, impelled by a state of mind which is destined not to last, that we make our irrevocable decisions." Ch. I: Madame Swann at Home

"We are not provided with wisdom, we must discover it for ourselves, after a journey through the wilderness which no one else can take for us, an effort which no one can spare us." IV: Seascape, with a Frieze of Girls

"We do not succeed in changing things according to our desire, but gradually our desire changes. The situation that we hoped to change because it was intolerable becomes unimportant. We have not managed to surmount the obstacle, as we were absolutely determined to do, but life has taken us round it, led us past it, and then if we turn round to gaze at the remote past, we can barely catch sight of it, so imperceptible has it become." Ch. I: Grief and Oblivion

"By art alone we are able to get outside ourselves, to know what another sees of this universe which for him is not ours, the landscapes of which would remain as unknown to us as those of the moon. Thanks to art, instead of seeing one world, our own, we see it multiplied and as many original artists as there are, so many worlds are at our disposal, differing more widely from each other than those which roll round the infinite and which, whether their name be Rembrandt or Vermeer, send us their unique rays many centuries after the hearth from which they emanate is extinguished."

“Everything great in the world is done by neurotics; they alone founded our religions and created our masterpieces.” 
― Marcel Proust

“People who are not in love fail to understand how an intelligent man can suffer because of a very ordinary woman. This is like being surprised that anyone should be stricken with cholera because of a creature so insignificant as the common bacillus.” 
― Marcel Proust

“Even in the most insignificant details of our daily life, none of us can be said to constitute a material whole, which is identical for everyone, and need only be turned up like a page in an account-book or the record of a will; our social personality is created by the thoughts of other people.” 
― Marcel Proust, Swann's Way

“Nine tenths of the ills from which intelligent people suffer spring from their intellect.” 
― Remembrance of Things Past: Volume I - Swann's Way & Within a Budding Grove

“To be an artist is to fail, as no other dare to fail... failure is his world and the shrink from it desertion” 
― Marcel Proust

“These dreams reminded me that, since I wished some day to become a writer, it was high time to decide what sort of books I was going to write. But as soon as I asked myself the question, and tried to discover some subject to which I could impart a philosophical significance of infinite value, my mind would stop like a clock, my consciousness would be faced with a blank, I would feel either that I was wholly devoid of talent or perhaps that some malady of the brain was hindering its development.” 
― Swann's Way

“A little tap at the window, as though some missile had struck it, followed by a plentiful, falling sound, as light, though, as if a shower of sand were being sprinkled from a window overhead; then the fall spread, took on an order, a rhythm, became liquid, loud, drumming, musical, innumerable, universal. It was the rain” 
― Swann's Way

“Love...., ever unsatisfied, lives always in the moment that is about to come.” 
― Marcel Proust

“in my cowardice I became at once a man, and did what all we grown men do when face to face with suffering and injustice; I preferred not to see them” 
― Marcel Proust, Swann's Way

“We have nothing to fear and a great deal to learn from trees, that vigorours and pacific tribe which without stint produces strengthening essences for us, soothing balms, and in whose gracious company we spend so many cool, silent, and intimate hours.” 
― Pleasure and Regrets 

the field open to the musician is not a miserable stave of seven notes, but an immeasurable keyboard (still almost entirely unknown) on which, here and there only, separated by the thick darkness of its unexplored tracts, some few among the millions of keys of tenderness, of passion, of courage, of serenity, which compose it, each one differing from all the rest as one universe differs from another, have been discovered by a few great artists who do us the service, when they awaken in us the emotion corresponding to the theme they have discovered, of showing us what richness, what variety lies hidden, unknown to us, in that vast, unfathomed and forbidding night of our soul which we take to be an impenetrable void.” 
― Marcel Proust, Swann's Way

“Reading is at the threshold of the spiritual life; it can introduce us to it. It does not constitute it ... There are certain cases of spiritual depression in which reading can become a sort of curative discipline ... reintroducing a lazy mind into the life of the Spirit.” 
― Marcel Proust

“We don't receive wisdom we must discover it for ourselves.” 
― Marcel Proust

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