It had long been held that men and women approached the world differently.
Men were rational and intellectual; women emotional and irrational.
To call something beautiful is not the same as calling it an important work of art.
As a philosopher might say, beauty is not a necessary condition of the art object.
The Bright Young Things, as they were called, were the last bloom of a dying plant — the last generation of British aristocrats to lead a life of unfettered leisure before so many were cut down in their prime by the war that permanently altered the economic structure of Britain.
Stephen Tennant was the brightest of the Bright Young Things.
Oscar Wilde was, perhaps, the consummate Aesthete - famed as much for his wit as for his foppish dress and his love of peacock feathers, sun flowers and objets d’art.
His often-quoted comment “I find it harder and harder every day to live up to my blue china” has been noted as a perfect summary of the aesthete’s vacuous nature.
When we find something beautiful we become aware of our mutual humanity.
Take, for example, the extraordinary painting Yam awely by Emily Kam Kngwarry in our national collection.