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Quotes

Quote #1

I used our stateroom mirror to note my uncanny physical resemblance to El Greco. (4)

As we discuss in "Character Clues" Jean's appearance is rather a mess. Take a look at artist El Greco's self portrait. Jean is using actual art to present a increasingly awkward and ridiculous picture of himself, all in the name of humor .

Quote #2

I had been painting, I said, since early childhood, but that, following the advice of Pablo Picasso, who was one of the oldest and dearest friends of my parents, I had never exhibited. (7)

Salinger plays with the idea that there is a fine line, and sometimes no line at all, between art and lies. Jean doesn't see much difference in making up identity and painting a picture. Do you think this changes by the end of the story? Is this presented as a negative or positive aspect of being an artist?

Quote #3

During the next four days, using all my spare time, plus some time that didn't quite belong to me, I drew a dozen or more samples of what I thought were typical examples of American commercial art. (10)

Somehow, we always believe Jean when he tells us about his artistic accomplishment. This sentence also interests us because it discusses the commercial aspect of art. The correspondence art school and Bobby's work as an art buyer, seller, and appraiser also address the business aspect of art.

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