Tuesday, June 4, 2013

"I am doing the country like Cezanne"

We’ve mentioned Hemingway’s “Big Two-Hearted River” here. And we’ve drawn analogies between great painters and writing styles here. But did you know that young Hemingway was quite literally trying to mimic Cezanne's painting style in words when he wrote “Big Two-Hearted River?”

He wrote the following to Gertrude Stein at the time:
“I have finished two long stories ... and finished the long one I worked on before I went to Spain where I am doing the country like Cézanne and having a hell of a time and sometimes getting it a little bit. It is about 100 pages long and nothing happens and the country is swell.”
And of Cezanne’s In the Forest of Fountainbleau  (pictured above)  he once said:
"This is what we try to do in writing, this and this, and woods and the rocks we have to climb over."


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