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『THE BOOK OF TEA』 岡倉天心著 桶谷秀昭訳
平凡社 1983年

 To the sympathetic a masterpiece becomes a living reality towards which we feel drawn in bonds of comradeship. The masters are immortal,for their loves and fears live in us over and over again. It is rather the soul than the hand, the man than the technique, which appeals to us,――the more human the call the deeper is our response. It is because of this secret understanding between the master and ourselves that in poetry or romance we suffer and rejoice with the hero and heroine. Chikamatsu, our Japanese Shakespeare, has laid down as one of the first principles of dramatic composition the importance of taking the audience into the confidence of the author. Several of his pupils submitted plays for his approval, but only one of the pieces appealed to him. It was a play somewhat resembling the Comedy of Errors, in which twin brethren suffer through mistaken identity.“This,”said Chikamatsu,“has the proper spirit of the drama, for it takes the audience into consideration. The public is permitted to know more than the actors. It knows where the mistake lies, and pities the poor figures on the board who innocently rush to their fate.”
 The great masters both of the East and the West never forgot the value of suggestion as a means for taking the spectator info their confidence. Who can contemplate a masterpiece without being awed by the immense vista of thought presented to our consideration? How familiar and sympathetic are they all; how cold in contrast the modern commonplaces! In the former we feel the warm outpouring of a man's heart; in the latter only a formal salute. Engrossed in his technique, the modern rarely rises above himself. Like the musicians who vainly invoked the Lungmen harp, he sings only of himself. His works may be nearer science, but are further from humanity. We have an old saying in Japan that a woman cannot love a man who is truly vain, for there is no crevice in his heart for love to enter and fill up. In art vanity is equally fatal to sympathetic feeling, whether on the part of the artist or the public.

 It is much to be regretted that so much of the apparent enthusiasm for art at the present day has no foundation in real feeling. In this democratic age of ours men clamour for what is popularly considered the best, regardless of their feelings. They want the costly, not the refined; the fashionable, not the beautiful. To the masses, contemplation of illustrated periodicals, the worthy product of their own industrialism, would give more digestible food for artistic enjoyment than the early Italians or the Ashikaga masters, whom they pretend to admire. The name of the artist is more important to them than the quality of the work. As a Chinese critic complained many centuries ago, “ People criticize a picture by their ear.”It is this lack of genuine appreciation that is responsible for the pseudo-classic horrors that to-day greet us wherever we turn. (V ART APPRECIATION )   

 洋の東西を問わず偉大な巨匠たちは、観客に秘密を打ち明ける手段として、暗示の価値を忘れたことがない。傑作をつくづくと眺めて、果てしない思想の広がりに思いを凝らして、畏怖の念に襲われることのない者がだれかあろうか。それらの傑作は、なんと身近で共感を惹くことか。それにひきかえ、現代の凡作は何と冷やかであることか! 傑作にわれわれが感じるのは、人間心情のあたたかい流露であるが、凡作には儀礼的な挨拶しか感じられない。技術に夢中になって、現代の芸術家は自己を超えることはまれである。竜門の琴の霊を呼びさますことができなかった楽人のように、現代人は自分のことばかり歌っている。彼の作品は科学により近いかもしれぬが、人間性から一層遠ざかっている。日本の昔のことわざに、見栄はる男は女に好かれぬ、というのがあるが、そんな男の心には、愛情を注いで満たす隙き間がないからである。虚栄は、それが芸術家の側であれ観衆の側であれ、芸術への共感にとって同じように致命的である。

 たいへん残念なことだが、今日、芸術にたいするこれほど盛んな表面の熱狂は、真実の感情に根ざしていない。このわれわれの民主主義の時代には、人びとは自分の感情を顧みることなく、世間一般がもっともよいと見做すものに喝采を送っている。彼らが欲しがるのは、高価なものであって、風雅なものではない。当世風のものであって、美しいものではない。大衆にとって、彼ら自身の産業主義の価値ある産物である絵入り雑誌を眺める方が、彼らが賛美するふりをする初期のイタリア人や足利時代の巨匠よりも、芸術的享受にはより消化のいい食物になってくれるであろう。作品の質よりも芸術家のなまえの方が、彼らにとって大事なのだ。何百年も昔の中国の或る批評家がかこったように、「民衆は彼らの耳によって絵を批評する。」今日どこを向いても、目に触れる擬古典的なぞっとするしろものにたいしては、この正真の観賞力の欠如が責めを負うべきである。(「第五章 芸術鑑賞」)