Art: Craftsman for Today, Dreamer for Tomorrow

VICTOR VASARELY'S first visit to the Provengal village of Gordes was decisive. "Southern towns and villages devoured by an implacable sun have revealed to me a contradictory perspective," he wrote. "Never can the eye identify to what a given shadow or strip of wall belongs: solids and voids merge into one another, forms and backgrounds alternate, a given square jumps up or slithers downward depending on whether I couple it with a dark green spot or a piece of pale sky. Thus, identifiable things are transmuted into abstractions and begin their own independent...

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