Le Musée Imaginaire, Psychologie de l’art, 1947

André Malraux

A particularly important aspect of Malraux's thinking about art is his explanation of the capacity of art to transcend time. In contrast to the traditional notion that art endures because it is timeless – "eternal", Malraux argues that art lives on through metamorphosis  – a process of resuscitation and transformation in meaning.

Each work of art contains a potential for dialogue, this potential being proportional to the works chances of surviving the passage of time. This dialogue occurs between the work and its observer, and also between the works themselves– this being a corollary of museums, imaginary or not. By the juxtaposition of artistic figures in the montages of his books of art, Malraux’s only aim is to test this potential.

(Jaqueline Machabéïs, André Malraux, Across Boundaries)

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