"Learn by heart the forms to be found in nature, so that you can use them like notes in a musical composition. That is what these forms are for. Nature is a marvelous chaos, and it is our job and our duty to bring order into that chaos and — to perfect it. Leave it to others to puzzle over old books on geometry or the problems of higher mathematics. We are going to enjoy the forms we see before our eyes."

— Max Beckmann, “Drei Briefe an Eine Malerin” (1948)

(Photo of a woman looking at Max Beckmann paintings at Hypo-Kunsthalle in Munich by Joerg Koch/Getty Images)

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