Today (at last) I got to read the Studio, but it is an international issue and I felt very thankful to you because it wasn’t easy to get. The reading room only has one regular issue available because people have been stealing it; people steal things at this library, unbelievably, and not only books but also money. Volume bindings are made at the end of the year and only then do they go into the stacks. So, it took some negotiating, but the result was worth it. Your article is excellent, or “brilliant”, as they like to say around here. It is exquisitely written, the information is well organized, and the best thing about it is the main ideas. I know your aesthetic convictions from your letters, but still, I was impressed by your clarity and seriousness in print, and the general underpinning of your ideas. I think it’s something you wouldn’t have dreamed of (consciously) when you and Rykr were pushing surrealism in a baby carriage around that park. What a pity Rykr didn’t live to see it, as you were his kind of guy. You don’t know how unhappy I was when I visited you in Karlín. I can still see the room in front of me like it was today; it was raining, and you were “torturing” me about some exhibition, I think, or something like that. And I thought: why is he torturing me? Doesn’t he know what I’m going through? Rykr used to say that you thought I had no talent, and I know what you probably meant, and I didn’t hold it against you, but I was miserable; those first six months were awful. But there’s no point in crying over spilt milk. Who knows what he would have had to endure. He wasn’t completely of a sound mind – that much is clear to me now. But enough about that. He knew it and I didn’t, at the time. Enough about that, really. Let the dead bury the dead.
Now, please let me know in which issue the other article is printed, when you get a chance. It’s easier if I know the specific issue number. It’ll go smoothly from now on. Also, your article has a nice layout and “title” page. Of the painters featured, I was most intrigued by Ilya Kabakov. It’s all how you describe it there. Well then, dear Jindřich, ars longa et amata!