Headache all day, chiefly owing I think to the one and a half glasses of Pommeroy and Greno champagne that Beaverbrook gave me. At first I thought I could think (novel), but I couldn't. I meant to go out for an aimless walk, and then I saw that it was the private view of the Seurat pictures at the Lefebre Galleries, so I went there. The Seurat pictures want a lot of seeing to appreciate. In the big picture "Poseuses", one thing that strikes you is the loving patience of the execution - equalling Memling's, e.g. The pictures were badly framed, but according to Seurat's own ideas.
|Seurat, Les Poseuses|
I am soon to be sixty and yet I still need to work relentlessly to maintain my style of life. Why? Partly it is habit, and I have expensive women to keep, and I have come to feel it is somehow expected of me. The lifestyle has become part of my identity. But of course I do like all the attention and excitement. I doubt that I will ever be able to step-back into a more modest way of living which would allow me more time to myself.
Then I went to the New Gallery to see the new Jannings film, "Vaudeville". It is very fine, despite a simple and rather crude story. All the pictures make 'designed pictures'. I should say the prisoners' exercise was inspired by Van Gogh. Even the empty interiors are like Cezanne. The close-ups are wonderful in design. This is where Charlie Chaplin is utterly beaten by the German film. Jannings is an exceedingly fine actor too and puts Jack Barrymore right under. The film lasted ninety minutes without a break. I should have liked a break.
In response to a telegram I went to lunch with Aleister Crowley and his wife (Kelly's sister) today at Paillard's. he had been made a 'Khan' in the East, and was wearing a heavily jewelled red waistcoat, and the largest ring I ever saw on a human hand. I rather liked him. He said some brain specialist had told him that what made a great brain was not the number of facts or ideas known, but the number of facts or ideas co-ordinated or co-related. I said: "Of course."