VISIONARY REVUE

EF - He always was in a Catholic period... - provoking! Provoking fate! But, one day, we sat together with Amanda Lear. And he held her hand, and looked at me and said, 'Nous sommes comme des anges dans le ciel. Il n'y a pas de sexe, il n'y a que l'amour!' (We are like angels in heaven. There's no sex, only love!) A very sweet person. Everybody saw him as an eccentric. But being an eccentric myself, I saw it differently. All his extravagances, they were not so extraordinary really. It's just that he didn't hide it...

"...there was in each painting
a private mythology.
He could explain every detail..."


VR - Perhaps he could speak with you because there was a shared understanding of what you were trying to do.
EF - ...Welllll, welllll no. I think, at that time, when I met him, I was much too young. First of all, he spoke French with a very strong Catalan accent, and even French people could not really follow what he said. I was not able to communicate until years later when I had a knowledge of English and had acquired my cafe French (laughter). And then came the opportunity to have a conversation with him.
     At the beginning I, whew, could not verbally exchange ideas with him - I was too young. And at that time, he was very famous; there was always a big entourage with lots of people. So that, to speak to him, already, was a kind of effort that I didn't want to go through. Because, it wouldn't lead to anything really. He was too much involved in greeting people, making faces, saying funny things


 
 
 


PARIS SUMMER 2001

that didn't mean anything. Like (screaming like Dali) 'Le Montmartre! le bon art de Leibniz! La théorie la plus géniale. Leibniza za za like Nietzsche in Niza, Leibnizeh!'
VR - So, after knowing him could you look at his painting and see it the same way as in the beginning?
EF - It didn't change a thing.
VR - No?
EF - Except I realized that they had even, in an explainable way, much more meaning than I thought they would. And there was in each painting a private mythology. He could explain every detail and made it... really understandable to a certain degree. You know I think you can look at these paintings in a completely different way. That's exactly what he taught me, that there are many ways of doing a thing. Or looking at a thing, like his creation of the double image. And that is, I think, the source of his great gift.

REFERENCES

1. Conversation recorded June 2001
2. Gerhard Habarta, Das Einhorn Zwischen den Brüsten der Sphinx: Eine Biographie, Verlag Styria, 2001 p. 216.
3. Ernst Fuchs, Fantastisches Leben: Erinnerungen, Kindler Verlag, 2001, p. 176.
and Das Einhorn, p. 216.
4. Das Einhorn, p. 216, plus my own conversations with Fuchs.
5. Fantastiches Leben, p. 176.
6. 'Fuchs on Fuchs', in Fuchs de Draeger, Draeger, 1977, pp. 192 - 200 passim.

All translations from the German are my own. For those who read German, two books on Fuchs' life have come out recently. One, by Gerhard Habarta, is a sympathetic biography, using a pastiche of quotes from previous interviews. The other is written by Ernst Fuchs himself, and offers memories from his childhood until his meeting with Eva Fuchs. A second volume is forthcoming.


 
 
 


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