[Continued from page 496] first glance seem open to objection. Would this
not be, in a way, a misuse of the medium? For in point of fact this
translation from one art form to another is nothing more than a re
production process, in which the artist's contribution is limited to
supervision of the specialists' work and to the subsequent addition
of his signature.
Here several reservations must be made. It is quite understandable,
to begin with, that Lindner should wish to see his sequence of water-
colours in the hands of more than a single collector. His compositions,
with their strong colours and flat areas of paint, lend themselves un
usually well to lithographic treatment. His recognition of the fact that
specialized lithographers would be able to carry out the conversion with
greater fidelity to the originals than he himself could command is a
proof of his respect for the technical exponents of lithographic art. And
his own constant supervision of the work is a guarantee that this fidelity
has in fact been attained.
It should also be considered that what may seem a bold departure in
lithography is already taken for granted in other fields. Most sculptors,
for instance, only create a model, which is then executed on a larger
scale by special craftsmen. Lindner's procedure produces works which
are actually nearer to the original than this, for the dimensions remain
unchanged, and months of work are devoted to capturing even the
finest nuances on the stone.
One would be tempted to regard this portfolio as an innovation with
a big future were it not for the fact that the hand lithographers who
have here given proof of their skills are today becoming few and far
between. It might well be, in fact, that Richard Lindner's Furt City turns
out to be not merely a valuable document in which an artist comments
on his own times, but one of the last great achievements of hand litho
graphy in the history of art.