For many predecessors abstract art was an act of revolution, a break with tradition, a way to escape from the past. Quite objectively however, I think one must acknowlegde that the transition from naturalist to abstract has been a gradual one. My main point is the concept of continuity. Profound changes do occur, but not overnight, not within the timespan of a single generation or even several generations. As people can't escape from the future, they can't escape from the past. For the most part we are children of our ancestors,biologically as much as culturally. Linguists have found that many peoples around the world share in their languages ancient common words, which suggests not only common origins, but also that culture, what language is, can survive almost unimaginably long with few changes.
— Maarten J. Jansen