Wednesday, July 9, 2008
The moon and sixpence: W Somerset Maugham
A novel based loosely on the life Paul Gauguin: frustrated city type forsakes everything so that he can give expression, through art, to what is burning inside him. Ends up in squalor in Tahiti, finally painting the stuff he wants. A novel about the compulsion to create art and (when this compulsion is allowed to be Lord) how it both creates and destroys. I think the 'moon and sixpence' reference is to someone chasing the moon in the sky and missing the sixpence at his feet.