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By Bernard Malamud

This is often the tale in paintings of the painter Arthur Fidelman, born within the Bronx and spending years of his lifestyles in Italy--Rome, Milan, Florence and Venice--pursuing his tumultuous occupation via experience and misadventure. What probably kept him from catastrophe (Fidelman is a comic book hero whose each subsequent step is a catch sprung by way of undesirable success as if his success have been sturdy) is that he saved his finger in paintings, maybe with no understanding it looking "perfection of the life" in addition to the paintings. Six photos of Fidelman include an exhibition.

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By Bernard Malamud

This is often the tale in paintings of the painter Arthur Fidelman, born within the Bronx and spending years of his lifestyles in Italy--Rome, Milan, Florence and Venice--pursuing his tumultuous occupation via experience and misadventure. What probably kept him from catastrophe (Fidelman is a comic book hero whose each subsequent step is a catch sprung by way of undesirable success as if his success have been sturdy) is that he saved his finger in paintings, maybe with no understanding it looking "perfection of the life" in addition to the paintings. Six photos of Fidelman include an exhibition.

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You would like a advisor in Rome? ” “Are you a advisor? ” “Why no longer? ” “No,” acknowledged Fidelman. “I’ll glance as i'm going alongside to museums, libraries, et cetera. ” This stuck Susskind’s awareness. “What are you, a professor? ” Fidelman couldn’t support blushing. “Not precisely, rather only a scholar. ” “From which establishment? ” He coughed a bit. “By that I suggest specialist scholar, chances are you'll say. name me Trofimov, from Chekhov. If there’s whatever to benefit i need to benefit it. ” “You have a few type of a venture? ” the opposite persevered. “A supply? ” “No supply. My cash is tough earned. I labored and kept many years to take a 12 months in Italy. I made convinced sacrifices. As for a venture, I’m writing at the painter Giotto. He was once some of the most important—” “You don’t need to inform me approximately Giotto,” Susskind interrupted with a bit smile. “You’ve studied his paintings? ” “Who doesn’t comprehend Giotto? ” “That’s fascinating to me,” acknowledged Fidelman, secretly aggravated. “How do you take place to understand him? ” “How do you? ” “I’ve given a great deal of time and research to his paintings. ” “So i do know him too. ” I’d greater get this over with earlier than it starts off to quantity as much as anything, Fidelman notion. He set down his bag and fished with a finger in his leather-based coin handbag. the 2 porters watched with curiosity, one taking a sandwich out of his pocket, unwrapping the newspaper and starting to consume. “This is for yourself,” Fidelman acknowledged. Susskind not often glanced on the coin as he allow it drop into his pants pocket. The porters then left. The refugee had a strange approach of status immobile, like a cigar shop Indian approximately to burst into flight. “In your luggage,” he stated vaguely, “would you possibly have a fit your needs can’t use? i may use a swimsuit. ” finally he involves the purpose. Fidelman, notwithstanding frustrated, managed himself. “All i've got is a transformation from the only you currently see me donning. Don’t get the incorrect proposal approximately me, Mr. Susskind. I’m now not wealthy. in reality I’m bad. Don’t allow a number of new outfits mislead you. I owe my sister cash for them. ” Susskind glanced down at his shabby dishevelled knickers. “I haven’t had a swimsuit for years. the single i used to be donning whilst I ran clear of Germany, fell aside. sooner or later i used to be strolling round bare. ” “Isn’t there a welfare association that may assist you out—some staff within the Jewish neighborhood, attracted to refugees? ” “The Jewish agencies desire to supply me what they need, now not what I wish,” Susskind answered bitterly. “The merely factor they provide me is a price ticket again to Israeli. ” “Why don’t you're taking it? ” “I informed you already, the following i think unfastened. ” “Freedom is a relative time period. ” “Don’t inform me approximately freedom. ” He understands all approximately that too, Fidelman notion. “So you are feeling free,” he acknowledged, “but how do you reside? ” Susskind coughed, a brutal cough. Fidelman used to be approximately to claim whatever extra near to freedom yet left it unsaid. Jesus, I’ll be saddled with him all day if I don’t be careful. “I’d larger be getting off to the resort. ” He bent back for his bag. Susskind touched him at the shoulder and while Fidelman exasperatedly straightened up, the part greenback he had given the fellow used to be staring him within the eye.

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