|. Oil on canvas c. 1900-1901.|
The mission of art is not to copy nature but to express it. The radiation of light is what gives the appearance of a particular body; so I have not drawn outlines; I have spread over the contours a cloud of warm and delicate tints in such a way that you cannot put your finger on the spot where the contours merge with the background. Nearby it looks woolly and imprecise, but from two paces away everything grows clear and one feels that the air surrounds the whole.
-Honoré Balzac, as channeled in The Unknown Masterpiece, published in 1832