Brev

Astrup, Nikolai til Meyer, Hans Jacob
1927-06-25

Transkripsjon:

Tor Martin Leknes

Oversettelse:

Francesca Nichols

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Transkripsjon
Oversettelse

Brev

Astrup, Nikolai til Meyer, Hans Jacob
1927-06-25
Brevs.295-66550, Nasjonalbiblioteket

17 sider

Transkripsjon: Tor Martin Leknes

Oversettelse: Francesca Nichols

Transkripsjon

Kjære Hr. Meyer!

De maa meget ùndskylde min

lange taùshed, – men jeg har været

saa nervös og nedfor i den senere

tid, – at jeg kvier mig for at

skrive – og saaledes pr. brev rö-

be, hvor nervös jeg i virkeligheden

er. – – Ja, först og fremst da

en hjærtelig takk for de Kr. 50, –

som De sendte mig "atpaa" hande-

len. Jeg tager – for en gangs skyld

imod "overpenge", – (eller hvad jeg

skal kalde det) – med "god sam-

vittighed"; thi jeg havde virkelig slidt

med dette træsnit, som med intet

andet; – fra dagslysets begyndelse

om morgenen til dagslysets slùtt om

kvelden – og det blev kl. 4 – til kl. 9

                         2

de sidste 14 dage. Og jeg bandte og

svor – som tidligere – over, at jeg havde

indladt mig paa dette arbeide –

atter en gang. Denne gang blev

det ogsaa værre, fordi jeg havde fore-

sat mig at "arbeide sammen" – saa

vidt mùligt – de bedste egenskaber

i de forskjellige tidligere tryk af

samme træsnit, – det lykkedes

selvfölgelig ikke overalt; – like saa

lidt som man kan lave et godt

billede ved at "komponere" sammen

noget fra en kveldsstemnings-skisse

med noget fra en dagstemnings-skisse. 

Og mangen gang tænkte jeg ikke

over dette, – förend jeg opdagede

det – efter at det var trykt; (og jeg

da saa den feilagtige virkning), –

og saa blev det da at "radere ùd"

og trykke alle plater op igjen paa

3

det angjældende sted; – og jeg

tror det lykkedes mig overalt at

stemme tingene sammen; (paa et par

ùvæsentlige pùnkter i "lövværket" blev

der desværre lidt "dobbeltryk" – og af

hensyn til den trasparente virkning

i lùften tùrde jeg ikke vove nogen

radering der, – men man lægger ikke

mærke til det, naar man ikke veed

noget om det paa forhaand). –

Imidlertid glæder det mig meget,

at De blev fornöiet med træsnittet, –

jeg tror ogsaa, at denne tryk i det

væsentlige staar over alle mine

andre tryk af samme træsnit,

og det blir ogsaa det sidste, jeg tryk-

ker, – i allefald skal der skjæres nye

plater, om noget skal trykkes igjen

af det. Jeg har maattet give min

kone det hoitidelige löfte ikke at

                     4

trykke noget "Rævebjöller" ùnder

Kr. 1000 – (og det er en pris, som

neppe nogen giver i disse tider, –

rigtig nok har en af dem, som först

kjöbte dette træsnit – Maschmann – 

været bùden Kr. 1000 – for sit tryk), –

men selv om jeg blir bùden denne pris,

trykker jeg det ikke op igjen, ùten at

der blir arbeidet nye plater först.

Bjerkestammerne skal da væk, – (saa

nær som den store til höire, og en

eller to i bakgrùnden) og erstattes af

andet. Som för nævnt er platerne

med tiden blevne ùmulige, – enkelte

har videt sig ut – andre krympet, –

og det er utaaleligt slid at flytte

og flytte for hver del af en plate,

som ikke stemmer med de andre, –

og saa maa der da "törres" imellem

hver flytning, da man ellers vilde

ödelægge, hvad der alt var trykt.

Nei jeg plager Dem nù med dette

                     5

rent tekniske. Det vilde jo være

meget lettere at male et billede

af samme motiv, – men et træsnit

er i grùnden værdifuldere, – da neppe

nogen anden vil kùnne gjöre noget

lignende i træsnit, og om 20 aar

kan De antagelig föie et 0 bak pri-

sen, om De vil sælge det igjen, – det

er jo gaaet slik med alle mine

ældre malerier – Joh. Ludv. Mowinckel

gav 3000 – for sit soleiebillede – jeg fik

ikke fùldt 100 – for det. Bergens billed-

galleri kjöbte min stùdie "Vaarnatten"

for 1900 – (blev straks efter bùden 2000 –

men vilde ikke sælge igjen), – jeg fik

Kr. 50 – for det. Advokat Knùdsen

har været bùden flere tùsend for sit

"Martzstemning", – men forlanger 10,000.

"Kunstforeningen" kjöbte et billede af

mig for 100 – det blev ùdloddet og vùndet

af en mand i Aalesùnd og solgt igjen

for 2000. – Paa en aùktion i Oslo

                          6

blev der solgt et af mine gamle bil-

leder for 7-800 (et lidet billede) – jeg

fik kr. 30 for det. – Wasteson

Blomqùist kùnsthandel – er begyndt

at "kjöbe op" – det som blir solgt

paa aùktioner og lign. af mig, – han

skal "lagre" – Gjemme dem væk i 10 –

ti aar, – og da skal der sættes en

0 bak priserne, (saa fortalte en dame

som kjender ham) : hemmeligheden

ved at tjene paa kùnst – mente han –

bestod i först at finde en maler

hvis billeder har "stigende" tendens, og

saa om mùligt "kjöbe op" hele hans

prodùktion – og saa "lagre": – fùld-

stændig skjùle billederne for folks

öine i 10 aar. Da kommer efter-

spörgselen og priserne stiger. –

Methoden var noget helt nyt for mig

jeg troede jùst, at folk bùrde se ens

ting i mellem-tiden, – men Wasteson

har jo stùderet kùnsthandel i Paris

                       7

og andre store byer, – saa han veed

vel, hvad han gjör – og kjender sin

kùnsthistorie grùndig: – fra "kùnsthand-

ler-standpùnkt", – der skal jo studiùm

til sligt som til all anden speculation.

Men for os malere er jo methoden

ùheldig, da vi paa den maade ikke

faar laane ùd vore billeder til ut-

stillinger, – de maa jo ikke sees af

pùblikum i "lagringstiden". –

Hvad R. Meyers arvinger har tjent paa

de billeder, de – "ùlovlig" tok ùt af

den "samling", som de var solgte til

for en bagatel – NB. fordi de skulde

være i "samlingen" –, ja, det skulde

være morsomt at vide. – Ja, nok

om dette kùnsthandler snak. – De kan

jo tro, at jeg mistænker Dem for at

spekulere i mine ting, – og at jeg insinù-

erer paa en maate over for Dem, – men

det er jo ikke tilfældet; thi De har al-

8 (og gav mig det samme som De

fik hos Moewinckel bl.a.)

drig "prùttet" – og endog et par gange

giver 50 kr. mere end jeg forlangte;

men selvfölgelig vil jeg være taknemlig

for, om De vil "holde" paa mine ting ca.

20 aar eller til jeg er död. – Det

er nemlig ingenting, som skader en

maler mere, end at hans "gamle" billeder

blir kastet ind paa markedet til

fortrængsel for hans nye; thi folk

har det nù engang med det – at

de altid vil erklære det "gamle" for

bedst – (derfor "spekùlerer" vel kunsthand-

lerne i "lagring"). – Ja, dette jeg

nævnte om Wasteson maa jeg bede Dem

ikke omtale; thi det var vel egentlig

"forretnings hemmeligheder", som ved-

kommende dame röbede overfor mig.

Jeg kùnde have lyst at benytte mig af

det, – hvis det ikke var saa modbydeligt

– : og lave "gamle" billeder og saa

brùke en "straamand" og sælge til den-

                             9

ne Wasteson (Blomquist). Men som sagt

det er modbydeligt for en virkelig

kùnstner, – jeg har engang indladt mig

paa dette: at lave nyt "gamle billede – nemlig overfor Neymann, –

og det er da ogsaa et af de faa billeder,

jeg skammer mig over at have "begaa-

et"; men jeg forstod, at manden kùn

vilde have det paa denne maade, – og

jeg skyldte ham penge og fölte mig

forpligtet til at tilfredsstille ham, –

ja dette maa De ikke sige ham

igjen, – han er jo ikke bleven bedraget

og kan sikkert allerede nù tjene

penge paa billedet, om han vil sælge.

Med hensyn til Deres interieur blev

det jo en anden sak, – da det gjaldt

en forbedring af et gammelt billede

– i slike tilfælder har man jo

sin kùnstneriske samvittighed i be-

hold. – Kunstnerisk seet er Neymanns

billede mindre værd end træsnittet af

lignende motiv ("Rævebjöller"). –

Mùnch havde nù været inde hos en

10

familie, som har nogle af mine billeder

og træsnit, – og han skùlde være meget

begeistret over mine ting – og mente, at

jeg skùlde "gjöre lykke" i Tyskland.

Saa langt kommer jeg neppe mere – skyld

og gjæld hoper sig op om örene paa mig –

(i gaar blev jeg en dog nægtet en melsæk

paa kredit paa handelstedet), – men

jeg har tænkt lidt paa en utstilling i

Stokholm: – den svenske kùnsthisto-

riker Laùrin har skrevet et par

artikler om mig, og jeg har ogsaa

tænkt lidt paa Kjöbenhavn, hvor

et kunstblad har havt en lang

artikkel om mig. – Kinck's böker

skal komme ùd paa tysk, og man

vil have mig til at illustrere

ham, – men jeg magter intet for

denne nervösitet og de stadige

gjældskrav. Jeg er ùmùlig – vil De vel

sige, – ja, jeg er det i flere henseender;

her har jeg til exempel henimod 100

                           11

ùbesvarede breve liggende, – (forùden reg-

ninger og gjældskrav) – breve like fra 1916-

-17 – bestillinger paa malerier og træsnit og

forespörgsler om alt mùligt – like fra

plantearter og flùer i bygden – til fore-

spörgsler om "dùnkle" steder hos Kinck; –

gùd vide, hvorfor jeg i det sidste bliver be-

tragtet som en "Kinck-expert"! – Ja, endog

breve fra Kinck vil man kjöpe af mig;

ja, det skùlde bare mangle, at man skulde

"hökre" med sin kjæreste vens breve; – jeg

kvier mig endog paa at laane dem ùd til

hans dötre, som nù gang paa gang har

bedt mig saa pent derom, – jeg veed ikke

om det er rett? – og ùndlader derfor

at svare. Forlæggere vil udgive pragt-

udgaver af udvalg af Kinck's noveller og

vil have illustrationer, – jeg har havt

nok af forlæggere för – takket være Dem

tabte jeg jo rigtignok ikke alt paa

12

mit arbeide for Gyldendahl, – men

jeg var lovet 400 kr. – enten man god-

tok mine illustrationer eller ikke, og det

snöd man mig paa, – og illustrationer –

blev liggende og "slænge" – ved mine man-

ge flytninger; – og det var bare levningerne

som jeg til slùt fandt af stùdierne til pennetegningerne – og

som De var saa venlig at sælge for mig.

Et andet forlag fik laane et maleri og

10 store tegninger, som jeg havde ùdarbei-

det i samraad med Kinck. – Kinck

skulde have maleriet, og jeg skulde

faa tegningerne tilbake for at benytte 

til træsnit til en ùdgave i stort for-

mat, som Kinck og jeg havde planlagt

(paa opfordring af ham), – men vi fik

hverken maleriet eller tegningerne

tilbake. – Kinck tænkte paa process

da maleriet ikke engang blev benyttet

i den lille fille reprodùctionen, som

forlaget gav ud. Forlagets personale hav-

de simpelthen "stjaalet" tingene, og for-

lagets styre svarede frækt, at det var skik

13

i de fleste forlag, at personalet "delte" illù-

strationsstoffet mellem sig.

Nei nù skal jeg ikke plage Dem længer

med alt dette, som igrùnden bare angaar

mig selv. – Det var vist tanken at

gjöre en slags ùndskyldning for mine

forsömmelser overfor Dem med brev skriv-

ningen og besvarelsen af Deres spörgs-

maal angaaende billederne til Van-

Erpeckom. Ja han er vel lik Ney-

man i sin smag – og vil have "gammel-

Astrup" helst, – endskjönt – han liker

jo ogsaa Engelsens billede, som jo

hörer til de nyere ting. Ja jeg har egent-

lig bare et "gammelt" billede, – som jeg

har holdt paa, – fordi der var noget

ufærdigt i det, – dette har jeg nù gjort

færdigt og skal sende det en af de

förste dage, – det ligner jo ikke egentlig

Neymanns billede, – det er virkelig "ægte"

"gammelt". – Men jeg har nù i höst og

                        14

vinter arbeidet med 3 interieùrer med

tanke paa v. Erpeckom, – ingen er dog lik

Engelsens billede, – de er meget bedre

i kompositionen, – da jeg nù altid bruker

en eller anden streng harmonisering

af kompositionen – helst "det gyldne snit"; –

man maa i maleriet engang komme

saa langt (som man længst er kommen

i mùsikken), at man finder love

for harmoni – og, hvad der er vanske-

ligere, – de rette "oplösninger" for disso-

nanserne; – det sidste har jeg stormands-

galskab nok til at tro, at jeg er den

eneste i verden, som er inde paa for

tiden; – (og jeg tager ingen "patent" paa

det – intet "hemmeligheds kræmmeri"

i kùnsten! Jeg har ùndervist mine

elever i dette, som i alt andet, som jeg

selv veed).

Hvad et billedes komposition angaar,

begynder jeg at se langt ind i fremtiden;

               15

Men at finde det tilsvarende i far-

ven: lovene for harmoni og disso-

nansernes oplösning, – særlig i det

sidste, – der staar jeg endnù fast, som

de fleste andre; – men jeg skulde 

nok komme til det, hvis jeg havde

tiden til min raadighed og slap de

daglige sorger og bekymringer. –

En masse tid gaar bort til gaard

og hùslige sysler og til forhandling med creditorer – nù i det sidste

har jeg slidt med en bæk, som

tok sig löb ned over gaarden og

snart kùnde faaet alt til at "rase"

ùd – her gaar jo leir ras, hver vinter,

og vi ùndgik det ikke i aar heller: –

en bakke, som jeg hidtil har betrag-

tet som næsten fast fjeld, – og som

har ligget uforandret siden skabel-

sen – (altsaa ikke engang "opbrùdt"

jord") – begyndte i vinter at "hæve sig" som

en byld eller en anden vùlkan –

16

og saa brast det plùdselig ùd et leir-ras;

Aarsaken var bare den at min tje-

neste dreng havde sat op en taùghesje

der i fjor og hùllerne efter staurerne

i jorden blev fyldt af regnvand (og flom-

vand fra bakkerne og en liden bæk, som

tok nyt löp); og saa trængte vandet ned

i leiren som da begyndte at "æse" som

en anden gjærende sùrdeig, der "hæver sig".

Ja nù faar jeg vist sige: "mere i næste

nr." altsaa "fortsættelse" næste gang.

Skal jeg sende det "gamle" billede til

Dem? – det er ikke "stort" – (interieurer-

ne derimod er over meteren) men

de blir ikke færdige för til hösten, –

men da faar Erpeckom altsaa 3 at

vælge imellem. Det billede jeg sender

nù skùld egentlig været en "midlertidig"

ramme paa – det kræver det for afskjæringens

skyld. Med bedste hilsen Deres Astrùp

Konvolutt, framside:

Til

Hr. Capt. H. J. Meyer

    Vetrlids almenning 27

Bergen

Oversettelse

Dear Mr. Meyer!

You must excuse me very much for my

long silence, – but I have been

so nervous and downhearted late-

ly, – that I am reluctant to

write – and thereby in a letter re-

veal, how nervous I actually

am. – – Well, first and foremost 

a sincere thank you for the 50.00 kroner

which You sent me "on top of" the 

deal. I accept – for once

the "overpayment", – (or whatever I 

should call it) – with "a clear con-

science"; for I had really laboured

with this woodcut, as with no

other; – from when the light of day began

in the morning until the daylight gave out in

the evening – and that was 4 am – until 9 pm

                         2

in the past fortnight. And I cursed and

swore – as before – for having

taken on this work –

once again. This time it 

was even worse, because I had proposed

for myself to "bring together" – as

far as possible – the best qualities

of the various earlier prints of 

the same woodcut, – it obviously

did not succeed everywhere; – just as

little as one might make a good

picture by "composing" together

something from a sketch of an evening atmosphere 

with something from a sketch of a daytime atmosphere. 

And many times I did not think

of this, – until I discovered

it – after it was printed; (and I

saw the mistaken effect), –

and then it was a question of "erasing"

and printing all the blocks again in

3

the area in question; – and I

believe I succeeded everywhere in

harmonising the elements together; (in a couple

of insignificant spots in the "foliage" it

unfortunately resulted in a bit of "double prints" – and for

the sake of the transparent effect

in the air I did not dare to risk any

erasing there, – but one does not 

notice it, when one does not have

any knowledge of it beforehand). –

Meanwhile it pleases me greatly,

that You were satisfied with the woodcut, –

I also believe, that this print in

essence surpasses all my

other prints of the same woodcut,

and it will also be the last, that I

print, – in any case new blocks

shall be carved, if any part of it shall be 

printed again. I have given my

wife a solemn promise not to

                     4

print any "Foxgloves" for less than

1,000 kroner – (and that is a price, that

hardly anyone gives in these times, –

although one of those, who first

purchased this woodcut – Maschmann – 

has been offered 1,000 kroner – for his print), –

but even if I am offered this price,

I will not print it up again, without

creating new woodblocks first.

The birch trunks will then be eliminated, – (at least

the large one on the right, and one

or two in the background) and replaced by

something else. As mentioned before the blocks

became impossible with the passing of time, – some

have expanded – others shrunken, –

and it is intolerably bothersome to shift

repeatedly for each area of a block,

that does not fit in with the others, –

and then they must be "dried" in-between

each shift, as one would otherwise

destroy what was already printed.

Well, I am boring You now with this

                     5

technical talk. It would be 

much easier to paint a picture 

of the same motif, – but a woodcut

is in essence more valuable, – as anyone

else would hardly be able to make anything

similar in woodcut, and in 20 years

You can most likely add a 0 on to the 

price, if You wish to sell it, – this

has been the fate of all my

older paintings – Joh. Ludv. Mowinckel

gave 3,000 – for his marigold picture – I received

not quite 100 – for it. Bergens billed-

galleri acquired my study "Spring Night"

for 1900 – (and was immediately after offered 2,000 –

but did not want to sell it), – I received 50

kroner – for it. Attorney Knùdsen

has been offered several thousand for his

"March atmosphere", – but demands 10,000.

The "Art Association" purchased a picture of

mine for 100 – it was raffled off and won

by a man in Aalesùnd and sold again

for 2,000. – At an auction in Oslo

                          6

one of my old pictures was sold

for 7-800 (a small picture) – I

received 30 kroner for it. – Wasteson

Blomqùist kùnsthandel – has begun

to "buy up" – what has been sold

at auctions and such of my things, – he 

will "store" – Hide them away for 10-

ten years, – and then a 0 will be added

on to the prices, (this was told by a lady 

who knows him): the secret

to earning money from art – in his opinion –

consisted in first finding a painter

whose pictures are "on the rise", and

then if possible to "buy up" his entire

production – and then "store it": – com-

pletely conceal the pictures from the public

eye for 10 years. Then the demand

increases and the prices rise. –

The method was something quite new to me

I just thought, that people should see one’s

works once in a while, – but Wasteson

has studied art dealing in Paris

                       7

and other big cities, – so he knows

what he is doing – and knows his

art history thoroughly: – from the "standpoint of

an art dealer", – there is a course of study

for this as with all other speculation.

But for us painters the method is

unfortunate, as in this way we cannot

lend our pictures out to ex-

hibitions, – for they must not be seen by

the public during the "storage period". –

What R. Meyer’s heirs have gained from

the pictures, they – "illegally" plucked out of

the "collection", they were sold 

for a pittance – N.B. because they should

have remained in "the collection" –, well, that would

be interesting to know. – Well, enough

of this talk of art dealers. – You might

think, that I suspect You of

speculating on my works, – and that I am making

insinuations about You in a way, – but

that is not the case; for You have ne-

8 (and among other things gave me the same [amount]

that You got from Moewinckel)

ver "haggled" – and even a few times have

given 50 kroner more than I asked for;

but obviously I would be grateful

if You would "hang on to" my works for about

20 years or until I am dead. – For there 

is nothing that damages a 

painter more, than when his "old" pictures

are thrown into the market to

squeeze out his new ones; because people

are created in such a way – that

they will always declare the "old" to be

best – (that is why art dealers "speculate"

on "storage"). – Well, this business I

mentioned about Wasteson I must ask You

not to mention; for it is actually a

"secret of the trade", that the afore-

mentioned lady revealed to me.

I might have had the desire to take advantage of

it, – had it not been so contemptible

– : to make "old" pictures and then

employ a "straw man" and sell to 

                             9

this Wasteson (Blomquist). But as I said

it is contemptible for a real

artist, – I have once attempted

doing this: to make new "old pictures – namely for Neymann, –

and it is also one of the few pictures,

that I am ashamed of having "perpe-

trated"; but I understood, that the man only

wished to have it this way, – and

I owed him money and felt

obliged to satisfy him, –

Well You must not repeat this to

him, – he has not been deceived

and can certainly already now make

a profit on the picture, if he wishes to sell.

When it comes to Your interior that

was another matter, – as it concerned

an improvement of an old picture 

– in such cases one 

retains one’s artistic con-

science. – Artistically speaking Neymann’s

picture is worth less than the woodcut of

a similar motif ("Foxgloves"). –

Mùnch had been visiting a

10

family, that has a few of my pictures

and woodcuts, – and it seems he was very

enthusiastic about my works – and believed, that

I would "achieve success" in Germany. 

I will hardly come that far again – obligations

and debts are piling up to my ears –

(yesterday I was even refused a sack of flour

on credit at the general store), – but

I have thought a little about [having] an exhibition in

Stockholm: – the Swedish art histo-

rian Laùrin has written a couple of

articles about me, and I have also

thought a little about Copenhagen, where

an art magazine has published

a long article about me. – Kinck's books

are going to be published in German, and I have

been asked to illustrate 

him, – but I don’t have the strength for anything due to

this anxiety and the continuous

debt claims. I am impossible – You will probably

say, – yes, I am in a number of ways; –

I have lying here nearly 100

                           11

unanswered letters for example, – (aside from 

bills and debt claims) – letters from as far back as 1916-

-17 – commissions for paintings and woodcuts and

requests of all kinds – everything from

plant species and flies in the village – to re-

quests about "obscure" places in Kinck; -

God knows, why I am lately con-

sidered to be a "Kinck expert"! – Yes, one

even wishes to purchase letters by Kinck from me;

well, wouldn’t that be something, imagine

"selling" the letters of one’s dearest friend; – I

am reluctant to even lend them out to

his daughters, who have again and again

asked me very nicely, – I don’t know

whether it is right? – and refrain therefore

from responding. Publishers wish to give out exclu-

sive editions of selections of Kinck's short stories and

want illustrations, – I have had 

enough of publishers before – thanks to You

I admittedly did not lose everything on

12

my work for Gyldendahl [publishing house], – but

I was promised 400 kroner – whether my

illustrations were accepted or not, and I

was cheated of this, – and the illustrations –

were left "lying around" – due to my many

moves; – and it was only the relics

that I finally found of the studies for the pen drawings – and

which You were so kind as to sell for me.

Another publisher borrowed a painting and

10 large drawings, which I had execut-

ed in consultation with Kinck. – Kinck

was to have the painting, and I was

to get the drawings back to use them 

for a woodcut version in a large for-

mat, that Kinck and I had planned

(on his initiative), – but we received

neither the painting nor the drawings 

in return. – Kinck thought of taking legal action

when the painting was not even used

for that measly little reproduction, which

the publishing house released. The employees of the publishing house

had simply "stolen" the works, and the board of

the publishing house rudely replied, that it was customary

13

in most publishing houses, for the personnel to "divide" illus-

tration materials up between them.

Well, I will not bother You any longer

with all this, which in truth only concerns

myself. – The original intention was to

make a kind of apology for my

neglect towards You with regard to letter writ-

ing and a response to Your ques-

tion about the pictures for Van-

Erpeckom. Well he is perhaps like Ney-

man in his taste – and wishes to have "old

Astrup" preferably, – although – he also

likes Engelsen’s picture, which in fact

belongs among newer things. Well, I actually

only have one "old" picture, – which I

have held on to, – because there was something

unfinished about it, – this I have now 

completed and will send it one day

soon, – it doesn’t actually resemble

Neymann’s pictures, – it is really "genuinely"

"old". – But I have this autumn and

                        14

winter worked on 3 interiors with

v. Erpeckom in mind, – yet none are like

Engelsen’s picture, – they are superior

in composition, – as I myself always employ

some kind of strict harmonising

of the composition – preferably "the golden section"; -

one must one day come so far in 

painting (as one has long ago achieved

in music), that one finds rules to

define harmony – and, what is even more

difficult, – the right "resolutions" for disso-

nances; – regarding the latter I am delu-

sional enough to believe, that I am the

only one in the world, who is onto something

at the moment; – (and I am not taking out any "patent" on

it – no "secretiveness"

in art! I have taught my

pupils in this, as in everything else, that I 

know).

When it come to a picture’s composition,

I am beginning to look far into the future;

               15

But to find something equivalent regarding col-

our: the laws governing harmony and the

resolution of dissonances, – particularly the

latter, – there I remain stuck, as

does almost everyone; – but I would 

likely arrive at it, if I had

time at my disposal and was spared the

daily sorrows and worries. –

A lot of time goes into farming

and domestic chores and to negotiating with creditors – now most recently

I have struggled with a stream, that

changed course to run down through the farm and

might soon create a "landslide" – 

here there are mudslides every winter,

and we were not spared this year either: –

a slope, which I until now have consid-

ered almost bedrock, – and which

has lain unaltered since crea-

tion – (in other words not even "broken

ground") – began this winter to "swell" like

an abscess or some kind of volcano –

16

and then suddenly burst into a mudslide; 

The reason was simply that my farm-

hand had set up a rope for a hayrack

there last year and the holes from the stakes

in the ground were filled with rainwater (and flood-

water from the slopes and the little stream that had

changed its course); and then the water penetrated down 

into the clay which then began to "rise" the

way any fermenting sourdough "rises".

Well, now I should say: "more in the next

issue" that is "to be continued" next time.

Shall I send the "old" picture to

You? – it is not "large" – (the interiors

on the other hand are over a metre) but

they won’t be finished before the autumn, – 

but then Erpeckom will have 3 to

choose between. The picture I am sending

now only has a "temporary"

frame on it – it requires it for the sake of the

cropping. With best wishes Your Astrùp

Envelope, front:

To

Capt. H. J. Meyer

    Vetrlids almenning 27

Bergen