Wisdom on Wednesdays—The mark of God’s love

Gertrude, August 24, 1950, pastel on paper, 16 x 20 in.
A portrait of the artist’s daughter on her 18th birthday.

“It is a special mark of providence to have the opportunity of complete humility before death.  The longer before death it is—the greater the mark of God’s love.”  (October 19, 1929)

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Wisdom on Wednesdays—Ultimately contradictory values

Lady in Garden

Lady in a Garden, pastel on paper, c. 1922, 14¼ x 11¼ in.
A portrait of Schmitt’s wife Gertrude done outside his studio in Silvermine.

“Can our national virtues of Comfort, Wealth, and Success be reconciled with the Cardinal Virtues of Chastity, Poverty, and Humility?  I am afraid that the answer must be honestly faced.  And the answer is, No.  The breakdown of civilization has probably been caused by the attempt to reconcile the two sets of ultimately contradictory, exclusive values.”  (1943)

Wisdom on Wednesdays—The breakdown of civilization

Lady in Garden

Lady in a Garden, pastel on paper, c. 1922, 14¼ x 11¼ in.
A portrait of Schmitt’s wife Gertrude done outside his studio in Silvermine.

“Can our national virtues of Comfort, Wealth, and Success be reconciled with the Cardinal Virtues of Chastity, Poverty, and Humility?  I am afraid that the answer must be honestly faced.  And the answer is, No.  The breakdown of civilization has probably been caused by the attempt to reconcile the two sets of ultimately contradictory, exclusive values.”  (1943)

Wisdom on Wednesdays—The Christian crux II

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Via Crucis, c. 1936, oil on aluminum, 18 x 15 in.

“I say it again—this Christian crux—this cross of Christ, when carried, will bring an epic poetic impulse (and consequently a heroic era for all art) that will make Greek art seem trivial, as Greek art is the heroism of the stoic and not of the humble cross-bearer.”  (c. 1930)

Wisdom on Wednesdays—Destiny and death

“Man is only happy in cooperating with his individual destiny. All men are destined to perfect virtue.
Some men are destined to achieve virtue before death.
Some are destined to achieve it after death.
It is a special mark of providence to have the opportunity of complete humility before death. The longer before death it is—the greater the mark of God’s love.”
(October 19, 1929)

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Gertrude, pastel on paper, c. 1918, 20 x 15 in.