Today I re-read the last chapters of Donna Tartt’s beautifully written novel The Goldfinch again. There’s something in the dialog between Hobie, an older mentor, and the younger Theo about objects and art that I wanted to remember. And then there it was – the the treasure of a few perfect lines.
“And I add my own love to the history of people who have loved beautiful things, and looked out for them, and pulled them from the fire, and sought them when they were lost, and tried to preserve them and save them while passing them along literally from hand to hand, singing out brilliantly from the wreck of time to the next generation of lovers, and the next.”
“Only—if you care for a thing enough, it takes on a life of its own, doesn’t it? And isn’t the whole point of things —beautiful things—that they connect you to some larger beauty?”
“…if a painting really works down in your heart and changes the way you see, and think, and feel, you don’t think, ‘Oh, I love this picture because it’s universal.’ ‘I love this painting because it speaks to all mankind.’ That’s not the reason anyone loves a piece of art. It’s a secret whisper from an alleyway. Psst, you. Hey kid. Yes you.”