Constantin Brancusi

Hobita- a state of heart

Scenario and comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu

This  is the place where Constantin Brancusi was born:scrap-metal at the edge of Bistrita of the Gorj department, the softness of the subcarpatic hills, in Romania, in the department of Gorj, area of Vâlcan, with the hamlet ofHobita.

It is a village of craftsmen and tailors of wood, it is the fifth of the seven children of Nicolae Brâncusi (the son of Nicolae Brâncusi and Maria Diaconescu).

A child apparently like the others which spent its time in the scrap-metal of the river with the sheep and the cows, but which seemed to differently discover the world, the world which was going to attract it like a magnet, the world which was going to fascinate it and to call it.

A boy who was going to be a small rebel, impassioned freedom, prisoner of imagination, form and thought.

With seven years, its first gesture D `independence: it leaves its house for the world… His mother finds it in Târgu -Jiu and brings back it to the house.

It begins its studies with Pestisani and then takes again them in Bradiceni in 1885, sad year marked by the death of his/her father. The nine year old child remains with his mother who is under precarious conditions. 

The memories are fragmentary: punished after having notched the small bench out of wooden, it is excluded from the school; he is apprentice for some time in a merchant .

We imagine a child who led the cows to the pasture, which played in the hamlet crossed by the fast river  of Bistritza, which ânonnait in the narrow room of the school; a child more curious than the others, a child who felt a mysterious desire to leave, to leave anywhere while carrying with him the treasure its heart.

Text of Constantin Brâncusi:

“Simplicity is not a goal, one reaches that point naturally if one approaches the true direction of the things. To find the way which leads to the sky.”

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu:

It is held a long time on the strike, looking at the waves of Bistritza, it piles up stones of the river and arranges them in its bag according to the forms, Miss Pogany - Brancusi - Romaniadimensions and colors’; stones corroded by water and carved by the wind.
He, on bank, with the stones: beautiful, perfect, for the love of art.

The magic of the stones of the shore, some share, a river lost among the green rings of subcarpatic, was going to find face.

The fish and the birds of this corner of the world awaited a transfiguration. Somebody who could surprise the gasoline of it, the spirit.

Just like the birds of the sky drew silhouettes on the horizon, just like the clouds generated transitory white wonders on infinite blue, just like it had a presentiment of the life with Hobita, hamlet lost in Carpates.

Text of Constantin Brâncusi:

“When a fish is seen, one does not think of his scales: one thinks of the speed of his movement, with his luminous element which swims, body seen through water.
Eh well, here are what I wanted to express. If I had reproduced his hearing, his eyes, his scales I would have stopped his movement and I would have obtained a simple copy of reality. On the contrary, I wanted to catch the flame of his spirit. “)

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu

The influence of his/her mother is undoubtedly decisive for the orphan. The world of Bradiceni, tales, stories, plays with the children of the village. It likes to go up to the mountain as assistance-shepherd. It is not interested too much in the school; moreover, at the time much of children left it to find a trade, to try their chances. The Table of silence - Brancusi - Romania

In the register of the pupils of the school of Bradiceni, it appears a mention according to which Constantin sent his Grigore brother to his place May.

It has the desire of party, it hears the voice of the unknown, it wants to embrace the immense horizon.

Finally what was to occur passed.
In 1888 the third attempt to flee succeeds to him. It works in Slatina like apprentice in a store, it leaves for Craiova where it works to learn a trade in the small one restoring Spirtaru brothers, street of the Station, then with the bar and the grocer of Ioan Zamfirescu.

He is always a child, but a child who gains his bread, he tests talent for the sculpture, he fills with wonder the customers at Craiova by the violin which he A creates.

Hobita remains some share behind with its fields overflowing of the flowers, with the long days of summer, the odor of the hay and the renewal.
The Door of the kiss - Brancusi - Romania
During the winter it always makes many snowmen, spectacular; it says that by their form it wants to transmit joy to the men.
How much it would be reality and how much later interpretation, biographical novel…. The knowledge could not!
But there remains the memory, the image of a child fascinated by the forms.
All the details of the childhood of the sculptor entered already the conscience of the villagers. The history is repeated just like in Ipotesti d’ Eminescu, Hordou de Cosbuc or Liveni of Moldavie d’ Enesco. This history saw still nowadays…
And it is although thus the things turn.

Professor Ion Blendea was all his life the conservative of this house imagined like museum. He told these stories with all the generations of visitors and the travellers as one says a poetry which one knows by heart…Sarutul de Constantin Brancusi
Always repeated, the details of a normal childhood, start to gently constitute the flagstones of the myth which one needs.

Intervention of Ion Blendea, the curator of a museum of Hobita.

“The original house where Constantin Brancusi was born was moved three houses further on this lane. In the court there are three original mulberry trees – from this mulberry tree behind me, Brâncusi fell at the age six years. It is assembled to seek blackberries, but it fell and he dislocated the right arm. Admittedly, his/her parents were anxious and they have to call a woman of the village, such Evdochia, the rebouteuse one of Hobita. It wrapped to him the hand in hemp with brandy and bandaged of a fish-plate of fir tree. After the cure it spent a whole summer to the mountain with the sheep and the shepherds. Each evening he liked to tell stories that to which all those testify which accompanied it and listened to it to speak.”

Text of Constantin Brâncusi: 

“It is a practice of my childhood. Each time the Master sent to me at the cellar to bring wine I sang with myself, with semi-voice so that other people do not hear me. Thus the song set me like a murmur inside.
It is not the form external of the things which is real, but their gasoline. From this truth, nobody can express reality by imitating the external surface of the things. “

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu:

The small calm house with the heavy beams, firmly harmonized, with merry red flowers  and the old objects represents a kind of emblem in the way of being of its ancestors belonging to the branch of” Bejucons” whose majority were tailors of wood to the axe.
The great-grandfather of the sculptor had raised the church of the village precisely by carving it with the axe. The palisade and pillars carved not far from the house through the fields close to the small cemetery.

How much children of the village didn’t notch their benches with the penknife, were not reprimes and did not undergo at their time the severity   of the school? Only one, was going to become a legend, a perpetual legend thanks to the repetitivity to fix each moment of its childhood in the collective memory, each first step of that which was going to transfigure the destiny of the sculpture of the twentieth century, Constantin Brancusi.

Video intervention of the conservative of the museum of Hobita, Ion Blendea

“It made the primary school with Pestisani. Trifu, his/her schoolmate, told that the penknife never missed in small Costica – it carried it always dependent with a string of hemp. During the second class it notched its name on the bench of school what annoyed its Master and determined to keep it in detention. Brancusi is also annoyed and it does not go any more in Pestisani, but it continues L with Bradiceni, the close village.

Trifu acknowledged: “When we began the school we went together in Pestisani where the school out of wooden was. It followed in Pestisani two classes. The name of the Master was Zaharia. One day it notched the bench with its penknife and the Master retained in the hen house. He fled and went in Bradiceni where Petre Brancusi was the Master. It is there that it made the other classes. He was intelligent and he included/understood quickly and liked all to know. With the eleven years age, after having finished the four classes it flees of the house without the knowledge of his parents and works in Târgu Jiu like apprentice in a workshop of dyeing. The contract of the work which is with the Files of the State de Târgu Jiu mentions: food, two costumes and then one will see. It remainsBrancusi workshop in Paristhere little of time, since his/her mother, Maria Diaconescu, take the way of the city and started to cry with the sight of small Costica the tinted face and the fingers burned by vitriol.

To the prayers of his mother, her tears, it grants to return in Hobita, but not for a long time, because in its head of extraordinary child is born the idea to leave further. But Targu Jiu is too close and it can be easily found by his parents. “

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu:

The ways inevitably lead to pre of Bistrita, with the fresh scrap-metals breathing the mint perfume through the sprinkled fields of the flowers with thousand colors and the yellow curdle-milk odor, of wild thyme and sweet pea.
Reality, it was first of all built forms…

Left for the world, the sculptor was going to return some times to the house as one always returns to his generating matrix among his fundamental signs. Its dazzling life absorbing the fight, the challenge of the prejudices, the Parisian workshop, the effort to be made recognize by the American world, the martyrdom of each sculpture, the friends and the enemies, the loved women, the often aggressive artistic world where the Rumanian artist fought to assert himself as genious artist, offering his spirit like sacrifice, changing the criteria of appreciation and the axis of contemplation of art, the life even was going to make it return from time to time to the house.

Text of Constantin Brancusi:

“To the beginning I led a dreadful life to Paris. Sometimes I leaned with the walls not to fall. Because of the hunger, disease. I had hung above the bed of the signs where I had written councils that I had been given in my moments of doubt.
I do not include/understand why today one cuts the mountains to carve of their stone of the naked ones, i.e. corpses. Do you see naked people around you?
That misses direction! Me also I made declining sculpture, I had exposures to the Living rooms. But later I realized of his futility. I had in my workshop about ten statues with the manner of Michel-Angel. I passed under their feet. Until one day when I understood that it was not my way, I took the hammer and I all destroyed them.
I was born in Pestisani. I come from Gorj. At seven years I left my house for the world.

Art is supposed to be pure joy. Artistic work is a nature’s need, a need for the life. One works just like one breathes. Therefore there are no artists, only men who test the need to work in the joy, to sing like the birds. As soon as the artist appears, art disappears. Each man should find his measurement. And that art is with the measurement of the man. Art should not exceed the man.

At the time of my childhood I dreamed to fly through the trees and the sky. For forty five years I have lived with the burden of the memory of this dream. I do not want to represent a bird, but to express his intrinsic quality, the flight, his dash. I doubt that I make a success of one day there. “

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu

The returns to the house, with the source had precise goals. At a given time, it makes a donation of six thousand lei to the church of the village and a ciborium on which it signs as a founder. It thinks also in the future of his niece and the assistance. Or it projects a monument for people of Pestisani. It thinks that it will be out of stone of Albesti – it is the first mental intention of what was going to be ” the Whole ” of Târgu Jiu.The cock - Brancusi - Romania

It carried everywhere the spirit of its native land: the solidarity accompanied by truths reference mark of the life of the Rumanian peasant.

Even in Paris it carved its armchairs and its stools in logs, it was made only the stove and the door, all the objects of the workshop seem to say indeed that the hand thinks and follows the voice of the matter.

Video intervention of the conservative of the museum, Ion Blendea

“Brâncusi kept its practices of Hobita even in Paris where it bought plums that it let ferment in the still and in this rustic atmosphere it offered to all those which passed by its workshop of the gaude, of poached eggs in Brâncusi, cheese, cabbage pickled, powder hot red pepper and Rumanian brandy. And with good reason people called it in Paris `the country king’.”

Text of Constantin Brâncusi 
“One does not realize of the wonder of the life. It is a wonder which one floats on a gigantic sphere which turns since centuries through chaos. The existence even is filled of wonders: flowers, trees, sheets! How it is a wonder of living! This feeling of plenitude, joy, this feeling which supplements the man. It is the feeling of grace which the love gives us too. But people do not test it. Because they are today on the chasm of the madness.
I was born in Pestisani… I come from Gorj, at seven years I left for the world. “

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu

They are the places of the beginnings and also returns. Pestisani, Bradiceni, Hobita, people deal with their own to some extent imperturbable businesses. But the reference marks of the memory still exist, the school of Bradiceni, the village of his/her mother, to be most expensive to it as Brâncusi called it, the way traversed so many times by thinking of the escape, the school of Pestisani today dilapidated, the long history of the true house and the house monument, history that each one can include/understand with its own way. The sculptor was not likely to see his monument dreamed to find of place there, in the native village. In fact, he had said to people that he will raise a stone door to them, but they did not include/understand the need for such a door; moreover, the owner of the ground where one was to raise the monument refused to give it to him…

In the memory of the peasants was going to remain the return of the sculptorThe column without end of Brancousi accompanied by beautiful Eileen Lane. During the summer of 1922. It was this return to Hobita under the sign of the love which also entered the legend. People have liked Irish to eyes deep which got dressed fortunately in the popular costume, which made jokes with the girls of the village, which entered the Rumanian round country, which walked in the village and was delighted by all and all.

It was a prostration of its subtle femininity owe the capacity and the brilliant energy of that which she liked. Of all the women who passed by her Parisian workshop, Brancusi took along only to Eileen to the house, in Hobita so that it sees and so that it is seen, so that it is delighted by this return at the origins, with the starting point, bus Hobita is finally a state of heart.

Text of Constantin Brancusi:

“A monument depends on the precise place which one chooses, in the way in which the sun will rise and lie down above, of the matter which is in the neighbourhoods.
Only after having these data, one chooses his material and one works the form which should be connected perfectly to nature and fix its monumentality.

It is not the form external of the things which is real, but their gasoline. From this truth, nobody could express reality by imitating the external surface of the things. “

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu

The house where him and Miss Lane were lodged is a regular house of countryside, a modest house who carries out of Târgu Jiu to Tismana, a house with terrace and court located between two brooks, one whose even passes over the window; in the garden there were carrots and pinks at this time. It was the house of Ilarion, the uncle of the sculptor, with whom it had developed a stove, a clock which struck midnight twelve times, a lamp floor, a cupboard. It was like a reverence in front of its trade, a solidarity with the necessary objects resulting from its hands.

Video intervention of the consevator of museum Ion Blendea

“One is here in the point called Cioaca, not whichseparates the limit between the Hobita village and the Sauca village. On the right, there are the grounds of Constantin Brâncusi, more precisely of the family, i.e. of Bejucons, because they had this nickname to be distinguished from another branch of the family, Chisarons.

Bejucons were people of small size. Each time Brâncusi came in the village it visited this place, Cioaca, to admire the chestnuts – here pushes the edible chestnut and the walnut tree under the influence of the méditerrané climate. In 1922 when it arrived with the Eileen Irishwoman, it took it along here to see this corner of the marvellous world and it is said that he had put on dry grasses of the ground of autumn of the carpets, some blankets wool carried out with the weaving loom, of the wine jugs, sweet chestnuts and nuts in ground pots. According to the habit of the country when one put for the first time either of alcohol, or of water in ground jugs one hears some grésillement, a certain symphony of the ground. This Irish come from the large world accustomed to be useful itself of God knows which cuts out of crystal or silver, is filled with enthusiasm this habit and always puts this jug at the ear to listen to the symphony of the Rumanian ground. Brâncusi testifies to its enthusiasm and at the time of the departure it buys a bread basket in hemp to him and fills it ground jugs and pots. It says to him: Goes to your large village which is called Paris and say to everyone how my friends and my villagers of Hobita live. “

Text of Constantin Brâncusi 

“It is the joy which always supported me. I one was never revolted. I found normal all that arrived to me, all was like it sied. Even the suffering I find it inevitable, necessary. In fact the sufferings modelled me. People are similar with diamonds of the mines. To be emphasized, they must rub against the life just like following friction one obtains the glare of exquisite diamonds.

At the beginning I engraved on the stone the group of the two beings intertwined… then, a long time after, the thought led me towards the image of the door by which one can pass in the world beyond. Now I intend to develop the silhouettes in the reason above the door. You recognize it? “

Comment of Cleopatra Lorintiu

The quintessence of beautiful, the idea of hope, membership, recognition. The values major morals, the faith and the direction of becoming, the perfection, the fundamental ideas of the life and work brâncusienne gather in the Table of silence, in the Door of the kiss, the Column without end.
Brâncusi said that for him the beautiful one represented absolute equity. The beautiful one of the fundamental matrix, the beautiful one of a jug of ground, one afternoon shone upon, worms of Gorj sung by Maria Tanase, a return to the memories of the beginning, parents, in the silence of the cemetery of the village close to the church raised by its great-grandfather.

Text of Constantin Brâncusi 

“People do not include themselves/understand, because their organization is pyramidal. Everyone runs up to reach the top. And one hustles the other to take its place. It would be more normal than the organization is horizontal just like that of the corn grains which were resplendissent with wide fields and also receive the refreshing wing of the wind and the heat of the sun, the rain and the light, the curse and the blessing.
What remains in the life after one isn’t any more? Especially the memory of the eyes, of the glances by the intermediary of which one shared the love for the men, for the world. These profiles symbolize the union through the love between the man and the woman. “

Other details on film: duration 37 minutes
A production of the studio of film TVR Cinema 2002
Reading of the comment – Cleopatra Lorintiu
Reading of the texts of Constantin Brâncusi – Constantin Codrescu
Video appearance – Ion Blendea, the guard of the house monument “Constantin Brâncusi” of Hobita, the Gorj department
Translation – Oana Cuzub