Eugáene Emmanuel Lemercier

The Argonne, France

The Argonne, France

in the morning.

. . . Yesterday, in the course of that march, I lived in a picture by my beloved primitives. Coming out of the wood, as we went down a long road, we had close by us a large farm-house, plumed by a group of bare trees beside a frozen pool.

Then, in the under-perspective so cleverly used by my dear painters with their air of simplicity, a road, unwinding itself, with its slopes and hills, bound in by shrubs, and some solitary trees: all this precise, fine, etched, and yet softened. A little bridge spanning a stream, a man on horseback passing close to the little bridge, carefully silhouetted, and then a little carriage: delicate balance of values, discreet, yet well maintained—all this in front of a horizon of noble woods. A kind of grey weather which has replaced the enchantment, so modern in feeling, of the nuances of last Sunday, takes me back to that incisive consciousness which moves us as a Breughel and the other masters, whose names escape me. Like this, too, the clear and orderly thronging in Albert Dürer backgrounds.

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