While We’re on the Subject

January 27, 2009

Once, in one of those river-facing rooms on an upper floor of the Tate, I passed a mother and her two children, who she was having sketch the view. 

I noticed her son (could he have been eight years old?) was on the verge of ripping up his attempt in disgust; I stopped to watch, so strongly did his impulse bring me back to my own childhood.

“Don’t,” his mother said. “It has a place. It’s part of the oeuvre.”

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