The most comprehensive list of Famous Art Quotes on the web
Art does not solve problems but makes us aware of their existence. It opens our eyes to see and our brain to imagine.Art will remain the most astonishing activity of mankind born out of struggle between wisdom and madness, between dream and reality in our mind.
No matter how sophisticated you may be, a huge granite mountain cannot be denied--it speaks in silence to the very core of your being.
There are no rules for good photographs, there are only good photographs.
There is nothing worse than a sharp image of a fuzzy concept.
The negative is comparable to the composer's score and the print to its performance. Each performance differs in subtle ways.
Not everybody trusts paintings but people believe photographs.
You don't take a photograph, you make it.
Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.
I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy. My sons ought to study mathematics and philosophy, geography, natural history, naval architecture, navigation, commerce and agriculture in order to give their children a right to study painting, poetry, music, architecture, statuary, tapestry, and porcelain.
Life beats down and crushes the soul and art reminds you that you have one.
Art is magic delivered from the lie of being truth.
A successful work of art is not one which resolves contradictions in a spurious harmony, but one which expresses the idea of harmony negatively by embodying the contradictions, pure and uncompromised, in its innermost structure.
The task of art today is to bring chaos into order.
Good art is not what it looks like, but what it does to us.
- Roy Adzak
I do not like to be a prophet. I like better to paint than to predict what the next painters will do. Though I have a feeling that consideration of order is very much in the air.
I have always been very much involved in the pseudo biological cycle of production, consumption and destruction. And for a long time, I have been anguished by the fact that one of its most conspicuous material results is the flooding of our world with junk and rejected odd objects.
- Josef Albers
The greatest work of an artist is the history of a painting.
I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve it through not dying.
- Woody Allen
Art, as far as it is able, follows nature, as a pupil imitates his master; thus your art must be, as it were, God's grandchild.
A man and his art are like a fool and his king.
My hand is the extension of the thinking process - the creative process.
Things are beautiful if you love them.
Art completes what nature cannot bring to finish
The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance.
Since mechanically obtained randomness contains all kinds of possible permutations, including the most regular ones, it cannot be relied upon always to exhibit a pervasive irregularity.
Now the work of art also represents a state of final equilibrium, of accomplished order and maximum relative entropy, and there are those who resent it. But art is not meant to stop the stream of life. Within a narrow span of duration and space the work of art concentrates a view of the human condition; and sometimes it marks the steps of progression, just as a man climbing the dark stairs of a medieval tower assures himself by the changing sights glimpsed through its narrow windows that he is getting somewhere after all.
Art is a fruit that grows in man, like a fruit on a plant, or a child in its mother’s womb.
- Jean Arp
What the mass media offers is not popular art, but entertainment which is intended to be consumed like food, forgotten, and replaced by a new dish.
W. H. Auden
I think that the very earliest influence was a horror of having to work in a bank or an office, a desire for a free and creative life.
- Frank Auerbach
If a day goes by without my doing something related to photography, it's as though I've neglected something essential to my existence, as though I had forgotten to wake up.
I enjoy life but I have absolutely no belief In anything, I don't say that anguish doesn't play a part in my work. The very fact that you exist, that you see what's going on around you, that must create anguish in anybody. I have a feeling of mortality all the time because if life excites you, its opposite, death, like a shadow, must excite you.
Great art is always a way of concentrating, reinventing what is called fact, what we know of our existence - a reconcentration... tearing away the veils that fact acquires through time. Ideas always acquire appearance veils, the attitudes people acquire of their time and earlier time. Really good artists tear down those veils.
Everybody has his own interpretation of a painting he sees. I don't mind if people have different interpretations of what I have painted ... A picture should be a re-creation of an event rather than an illustration of an object; but there is no tension in the picture unless there is the struggle with the object.
I think that great art is deeply ordered. Even if within the order there may be enormously instinctive and accidental things, nevertheless I think that they come out of a desire for ordering and for returning fact onto the nervous system in a more violent way. Why, after the great artists, do people ever try to do anything again? Only because, from generation to generation, through what the great artists have done, the instincts change.
One of the reasons why I don't like abstract painting, or why it doesn't interest me, is that I think painting is a duality, and that abstract painting is an entirely aesthetic thing... There's never any tension in it. -Francis Bacon The moment there are several figures - at any rate several figures on the same canvas - the story begins to be elaborated. And the moment the story is elaborated, the boredom sets in; the story talks louder than the paint... I don't want to avoid telling a story, but I want very, very much to do the thing that Valéry said - to give the sensation without the boredom of it's conveyance. And the moment the story enters, the boredom comes upon you.
Technique! The very word is like a shriek of outraged Art. It is the idiot name given to effort by those who are too weak, too weary, or too dull to play the game. The mighty have no theory of technique.
The man who can but sketch his purpose beforehand in words is regarded as a wonder, and every artist and writer possesses that faculty. But gestation, fruition, the laborious rearing of the offspring, putting it to bed every night full fed with milk, embracing it anew every morning with the inexhaustible affection of a mother's heart, licking it clean, dressing it a hundred times in the richest garb only to be instantly destroyed; then never to be cast down at the convulsions of this headlong life till the living masterpiece is perfected which in sculpture speaks to every eye, in literature to every intellect, in painting to every memory, in music to every heart! --this is the task of execution. The hand must be ready at every moment to work in obedience to the mind.
-Honore de Balzac
Do not imagine that Art is something which is designed to give gentle uplift and self-confidence. Art is not a brassiere. At least, not in the English sense. But do not forget that brassiere is the French word for life-jacket.
"...I paint German artists whom I admire. I paint their pictures, their work as painters, and their portraits too. But oddly enough, each of these portraits ends up as a picture of a woman with blonde hair. I myself have never been able to work out why this happens."
My heart beats more for a raw, average vulgar art, which doesn't live between sleepy fairy-tale moods and poetry but rather concedes a direct entrance to the fearful, commonplace, splendid and the average grotesque banality in life.
I can't tell you what art does and how it does it, but I know that often art has judged the judges, pleaded revenge to the innocent and shown to the future what the past suffered, so that it has never been forgotten....
Any great work of art... revives and readapts time and space, and the measure of its success is the extent to which it makes you an inhabitant of that world - the extent to which it invites you in and lets you breathe its strange, special air.
The artist who paints the emotions creates an enclosed world.. the picture.. which, like a book, has the same interest no matter where it happens to be. Such an artist, we may imagine, spends a great deal of time doing nothing but looking, both around him and inside him.
Now nature is not at variance with art, nor art with nature; they being both the servants of his providence. Art is the perfection of nature. Were the world now as it was the sixth day, there were yet a chaos. Nature hath made one world, and art another. In brief, all things are artificial; for nature is the art of God.
-Sir Thomas Browne
No sketches first, no studies, that’s long past:
I do what many dream of all their lives,
Dream? strive to do, and agonize to do,
And fail in doing. I could count twenty such
On twice your fingers, and not leave this town,
Who strive - you don’t know how the others strive
To paint a little thing like that you smeared
Carelessly passing with your robes afloat, -
Yet do much less, so much less, Someone says,
(I know his name, no matter) - so much less!
Well, less is more, Lucrezia: I am judged.
“Less is more” is said to have been one of the favorite maxims of architect Mies Van der Rohe.
Nothing exists until or unless it is observed. An artist is making something exist by observing it. And his hope for other people is that they will also make it exist by observing it. I call it "creative observation." Creative viewing.
William S. Burroughs
The function of the artist is the mythologization of the culture and the world. In the visual arts there were two men whose work handled mythological themes in a marvelous way: Paul Klee and Pablo Picasso.
The aim of art, the aim of a life can only be to increase the sum of freedom and responsibility to be found in every man and in the world. It cannot, under any circumstances, be to reduce or suppress that freedom, even temporarily. No great work has ever been based on hatred and contempt. On the contrary, there is not a single true work of art that has not in the end added to the inner freedom of each person who has known and loved it.
What was any art but a mould in which to imprison for a moment the shining elusive element which is life itself - life hurrying past us and running away, too strong to stop, too sweet to lose.
Artistic growth is, more than it is anything else, a refining of the sense of truthfulness. The stupid believe that to be truthful is easy; only the artist, the great artist, knows how difficult it is.
May I repeat what I told you here: treat nature by means of the cylinder, the sphere, the cone, everything brought into proper perspective so that each side of an object or a plane is directed towards a central point. Lines parallel to the horizon give breadth... lines perpendicular to this horizon give depth. But nature for us men is more depth than surface, whence the need to introduce into our light vibrations, represented by the reds and yellows, a sufficient amount of blueness to give the feel of air.
"When I am finishing a picture, I hold some God-made object up to it – a rock, a flower, the branch of a tree or my hand – as a final test. If the painting stands up beside a thing man cannot make, the painting is authentic. If there’s a clash between the two, it’s bad art."
To become truly immortal, a work of art must escape all human limits: logic and common sense will only interfere. But once these barriers are broken, it will enter the realms of childhood visions and dreams.
-Giorgio de Chirico
Although the dream is a very strange phenomenon and an inexplicable mystery, far more inexplicable is the mystery and aspect our minds confer on certain objects and aspects of life. Psychologically speaking, to discover something mysterious in objects is a symptom of cerebral abnormality related to certain kinds of insanity. I believe, however, that such abnormal moments can be found in everyone, and it is all the more fortunate when they occur in individuals with creative talent or with clairvoyant powers. Art is the fatal net which catches these strange moments on the wing like mysterious butterflies, fleeing the innocence and distraction of common men.
-Giorgio de Chirico
Listen carefully to first criticisms made of your work. Note just what it is about your work that critics don't like - then cultivate it. That's the only part of your work that's individual and worth keeping.
The artist one day falls through a hole in the brambles, and from that moment he is following the dark rapids of an underground river which may sometimes flow so near to the surface that the laughing picnic parties are heard above.
At some point we’ve got to stop asking ourselves what is the meaning of everything, maybe it’s not so very important what it means. It’s probably more important what the sense of it is.. they are two very basic and different things.
The desire to survive and the fear of death are artistic sentiments.
- Salvador Dali
People love mystery, and that is why they love my paintings.
- Salvador Dali
When I paint, the sea roars. The others splash about in the bath.
- Salvador Dali
People love mystery, and that is why they love my paintings.
- Salvador Dali
You have to systematically create confusion, it sets creativity free.
- Salvador Dali
Drawing is the honesty of the art. There is no possibility of cheating. It is either good or bad.
- Salvador Dali
"Principles for the Development of a Complete Mind: Study the science of art. Study the art of science. Develop your senses - especially learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else."
-Leonardo da Vinci
Art shouldn't be something that you go quietly into an art gallery and dip your forelock and say 'I have to be very quiet, I'm in here amongst the art.' It's here, art's everywhere. It's how you use your eyes. It's about the enjoyment of visual things. And it's certainly not for any one group of people.
I've always thought that there shouldn't be any limit to the things that are well designed. And I think that people who consider that art should only be kept for art galleries and doesn't have a role in public life, I think that's too narrow.
Society takes what it wants. The artist himself does not count, because there is no actual existence for the work of art. The work of art is always based on the two poles of the onlooker and the maker, and the spark that comes from the bipolar action gives birth to something - like electricity. But the onlooker has the last word, and it is always posterity that makes the masterpiece. The artist should not concern himself with this, because it has nothing to do with him.
Art is a habit-forming drug. That's all it is for the artist, for the collector, for anybody connected with it. Art has absolutely no existence as veracity, as truth. People speak of it with great, religious reverence, but I don't see why it is to be so much revered. I'm afraid I'm an agnostic when it comes to art. I don't believe in it with all the mystical trimmings. As a drug it's probably very useful for many people, very sedative, but as a religion it's not even as good as God.
I've worked really hard. I've made three pieces of seminal art in my life. If I died tomorrow, I'd be remembered for making them. There are a lot of artists who, no matter how hard they work in their lives, will never make anything seminal.
Talent and all that are really for the most part just baloney. Any schoolboy with a little aptitude can perhaps draw better than I; but what he lacks in most cases is that tenacious desire to make it reality, that obstinate gnashing of teeth and saying, "Although I know it can't be done, I want to do it anyway
-Maurits Cornelius Escher
The aim of every artist is to arrest motion, which is life, by artificial means and hold it fixed so that a hundred years later, when a stranger looks at it, it moves again since it is life.
People need trouble -- a little frustration to sharpen the spirit on, toughen it. Artists do; I don't mean you need to live in a rat hole or gutter, but you have to learn fortitude, endurance. Only vegetables are happy.
Works of art, in my opinion, are the only objects in the material universe to possess internal order, and that is why, though I don't believe that only art matters, I do believe in Art for Art's sake.
-E. M. Forster
I don't want any color to be noticeable... I don't want it to operate in the modernist sense as color, something independent... Full, saturated colors have an emotional significance I want to avoid.
I remember Francis Bacon would say that he felt he was giving art what he thought it previously lacked. With me, it's what Yeats called the fascination with what's difficult. I'm only trying to do what I can't do.
The aura given out by a person or object is as much a part of them as their flesh. The effect that they make in space is as bound up with them as might be their color or smell ... Therefore the painter must be as concerned with the air surrounding his subject as with the subject itself. It is through observation and perception of atmosphere that he can register the feeling that he wishes his painting to give out.
Popular art is normally decried as vulgar by the cultivated people of its time; then it loses favor with its original audience as a new generation grows up; then it begins to merge into the softer lighting of “quaint,” and cultivated people become interested in it, and finally it begins to take on the archaic dignity of the primitive.
A hint - don't paint too much direct from nature. Art is an abstraction! Study nature then brood on it and treasure the creation which will result, which is the only way to ascend towards God - to create like our Divine Master.
Making beautiful things for everyday use is a wonderful thing to do.. making life flow more easily.. but art confronts life, allowing it to stop and perhaps change direction.. they are completely different.
Art criticism, I would say, is about the most ungrateful form of "elevated" writing I know of. It may also be one of the most challenging.. if only because so few people have done it well enough to be remembered.. but I'm not sure the challenge is worth it.
I am a night painter, so when I come into the studio the next morning the delirium is over. I come into the studio very fearfully, I creep in to see what happened the night before. And the feeling is one of, "My God, did I do that?"
When this girl at the museum asked me who I liked better, "Monet" or "Manet", I said, "I like mayonnaise." She just stared at me, so I said it again, louder. Then she left. I guess she went to try to find some mayonnaise for me.
A portrait has one advantage over its original: it is unconscious; and you may therefore admire without insulting it. I have seen portraits which have more.
~Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare
My contribution to the world is my ability to draw. I will draw as much as I can for as many people as I can for as long as I can. Drawing is still basically the same as it has been since prehistoric times. It brings together man and the world. It lives through magic.
Red is one of the strongest colors, its blood, it has a power with the eye.
- Keith HaringThe greatest masterpieces were once only pigments on a palette.
- Henry S. Haskins
Only the poet can look beyond the detail and see the whole picture.
- Helen Hayes
People say to me that my work's sensational. And I go, "What's wrong with sensation? It's like touching skin." Sensation is an element of what I do, and why not? It's not sensational for the sake of being sensational, but it's sensational art.
One of the things I'm doing in Yorkshire is finding out how difficult it is to learn not to see like cameras, which has had such an effect on us. The camera sees everything at once. We don't. There's a hierarchy. Why do I pick out that thing as opposed to that thing or that thing?
There comes a point where you see it all as completely empty being a popular artist to the extent that people who are not necessarily interested in art know about things or take some little interest. I think that now for me it's a burden. It's a bit hard to deal with and it wastes time as well.
While I know that the beautiful, the spiritual and the sublime are suspect today, I have begun to stop resisting the constant urge to deny that beauty has a valid right to exist in contemporary art.
When my daughter was about seven years old, she asked me one day what I did at work. I told her I worked at the college- that my job was to teach people how to draw. She stared back at me, incredulous, and said, "You mean they forget?"
Art is a kind of innate drive that seizes a human being and makes him its instrument. To perform this difficult office it is sometimes necessary for him to sacrifice happiness and everything that makes life worth living for the ordinary human being.
An empty canvas, apparently really empty, that says nothing and is without significance. Almost dull, in fact. In reality, however, [it's] crammed with thousands of undertone tensions and [is] full of expectancy. Slightly apprehensive lest it should be outraged ... It can contain anything but cannot sustain everything ... An empty canvas is a living wonder -- far lovelier than certain pictures.
There are some people who don't like museums because they think of them as tombs, or something negative. I've always loved them. They are to me lighthouses of utopianism and social well-being.
As I lay stretched upon the beach of Nice, I began to feel hatred for birds which flew back and forth across my blue sky, cloudless sky, because they tried to bore holes in my greatest and most beautiful work.
Generally I walk around and I see one object and it affects me. I can't just choose any object or any theme to work with. I can be confronted by an object and be interested in a specific thing about it, and then the context develops simultaneously. I never try to create a context artificially.
I always say that I'm an artist who works with pictures and words, so I think that the different aspects of my activity, whether it's writing criticism, or doing visual work that incorporates writing, or teaching, or curating, is all of a single cloth, and I don't make any separation in terms of those practices.
I find working with glass meditative, almost therapeutic. I can leave the world behind, and focus... The simplicity of form, the drama of rich, intense color, the joy of challenge, and the challenge of endurance... The piece, when it is over, is not what is made, but how it is made.
Make sure you love art and don't do it if you don't, because you'll be found out. Don't listen to the teachers. And feel it. Do it because you can't do anything else. Once you've decided, don't do anything else, because as someone once said, "art is long".
David Larwill Quotes
Very few people possess true artistic ability. It is therefore both unseemly and unproductive to irritate the situation by making an effort. If you have a burning, restless urge to write or paint, simply eat something sweet and the feeling will pass.
Picasso wouldn't have churned out the same number of documented works of art as the days he lived on earth if he hadn't been obsessed. If Beethoven hadn't been obsessed with music he probably would have given the game away when he realised he was deaf.
I don't think one can accurately measure the historical effectiveness of a poem; but one does know, of course, that books influence individuals; and individuals, although they are part of large economic and social processes, influence history. Every mass is after all made up of millions of individuals.
I'm not really sure what social message my art carries, if any. And I don't really want it to carry one. I'm not interested in the subject matter to try to teach society anything, or to try to better our world in any way.
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Thing about animation is there are people who associate it more with being a visual art. I've actually always thought of animation as more closely related to the performing arts. So many of the same rules of acting apply. In a lot of cases you don't have to be a terrific artist.
We dont like their sound, and guitar music is on the way out. Well, art is art, isnt it? Still, on the other hand, water is water! And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now, uh... Now you tell me what you know.
Creativity takes courage.
- Henri Matisse
All my efforts go into creating an art that can be understood by everyone.
- Henri Matisse
The portrait is one of the most curious art forms. It demands special qualities in the artist, almost total kinship with the model.
- Henri Matisse
After a half-century of hard work and reflection, the wall is still there.
- Henri Matisse
Impressionism is the newspaper of the soul.
- Henri Matisse
It would be a mistake to ascribe this creative power to an inborn talent. In art, the genius creator is not just a gifted being, but a person who has succeeded in arranging for their appointed end, a complex of activities, of which the work is the outcome. The artist begins with a vision -- a creative operation requiring an effort. Creativity takes courage.
. . I have always sought to be understood and, while I was taken to task by critics or colleagues, I thought they were right, assuming I had not been clear enough to be understood. This assumption allowed me to work my whole life without hatred and even without bitterness toward criticism, regardless of its source. I counted solely on the clarity of expression of my work to gain my ends. Hatred, rancor, and the spirit of vengeance are useless baggage to the artist. His road is difficult enough for him to cleanse his soul of everything which could make it more so.
Creativity arises out of the tension between spontaneity and limitations, the latter (like the river banks) forcing the spontaneity into the various forms which are essential to the work of art or poem.
A beautiful thing never gives so much pain as does failing to hear and see it.
A great sculpture can roll down a hill without breaking.
Genius is eternal patience.
I already have a wife who is too much for me.. she is my art, and my works are my children.
The artist is the opposite of the politically minded individual, the opposite of the reformer, the opposite of the idealist. The artist does not tinker with the universe; he recreates it out of his own experience and understanding of life.
"... He is a bright sage, a dancing seer who, with a sweep of the brush, removes the ugly scaffold to which the body of man is chained by the incontrovertible facts of life. He it is, if any man today possesses the gift, who knows where to dissolve the human figure, who has the courage to sacrifice an harmonious line in order to detect the rhythm and murmur of the blood, who takes the light that has been refracted inside him and lets it flood the keyboard of color. Behind the minutiae, the chaos, the mockery of life, he detects the invisible pattern; he announces his discoveries in the metaphysical pigment of space. No searching for formulae, no crucifixion of ideas, no compulsion other than to create. Even as the world goes to smash there is one man who remains at the core, who becomes more solidly fixed and anchored, more centrifugal as the process of dissolution quickens."
-Henry Miller (on Henri Matisse) Tropic of Cancer
I have made a silent compact with myself not to change a line of what I write. I am not interested in perfecting my thoughts, nor my actions. Beside the perfection of Turgenev I put the perfection of Dostoevsky (is there anything more perfect than "The Ethernal Husband"?). Here, then, in one and the same medium, we have two kinds of perfection. But in van Gogh's letters there is a perfection beyond either of these. It is the triumph of individual over art.
-Henry Miller, "The Tropic of Cancer"
Art is not made for anybody and is, at the same time, for everybody.
If the world really looks like that I will paint no more!
-Claude Monet, flinging away a pair of glasses for which he had been fitted to correct a severe astigmatism.
The many great gardens of the world, of literature and poetry, of painting and music, of religion and architecture, all make the point as clear as possible: The soul cannot thrive in the absence of a garden. If you don't want paradise, you are not human; and if you are not human, you don't have a soul.
One might truthfully say that abstract art is stripped bare of other things in order to intensify it, its rhythms, spatial intervals, and color structure. Abstraction is a process of emphasis . . . Nothing as drastic an innovation as abstract art could have come into existence, save as the consequence of a most profound, relentless, unquenchable need. The need is for felt experience -- intense, immediate, direct, subtle, unified, warm, vivid, rhythmic.
You're sitting there with your muse and your muse is telling you something and you’re following it, and you end up the next day looking at it and thinking "what the hell was the muse saying to me?"
Everyone wants to understand art. Why not try to understand the song of a bird? Why does one love the night, flowers, everything around one, without trying to understand them? But in the case of a painting people have to understand. If only they would realize above all that an artist works of necessity, that he himself is only a trifling bit of the world, and that no more importance should be attached to him than to plenty of other things which please us in the world, though we can't explain them. People who try to explain pictures are usually barking up the wrong tree.
Were I called on to define, very briefly, the term Art, I should call it 'the reproduction of what the Senses perceive in Nature through the veil of the soul.' The mere imitation, however accurate, of what is in Nature, entitles no man to the sacred name of 'Artist.'
-Edgar Allan Poe
My painting does not come from the easel.
The pictures I contemplate painting would constitute a halfway state and an attempt to point out the direction of the future without arriving there completely.
Art is a way of saying what it means to be alive, and the most salient feature of existence is the unthinkable odds against it. For every way that there is of being here, there are an infinity of ways of not being here. Historical accident snuffs out whole universes with every clock tick. Statistics declare us ridiculous. Thermodynamics prohibits us. Life, by any reasonable measure, is impossible, and my life—this, here, now—infinitely more so. Art is a way of saying, in the face of all that impossibility, just how worth celebrating it is to be able to say anything at all.
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”An artist's early work is inevitably made up of a mixture of tendencies and interests, some of which are compatible and some of which are in conflict. As the artist picks his way along, rejecting and accepting as he goes, certain patterns of enquiry emerge. His failures are as valuable as his successes: by misjudging one thing he conforms something else, even if at the time he does not know what that something else is.”
- Bridget Riley
For me nature is not landscape, but the dynamism of visual forces.. an event rather than an appearance. These forces can only be tackled by treating color and form as ultimate identities, freeing them from all descriptive or functional roles.
The sculptor represents the transition from one pose to another.. he indicates how insensibly the first glides into the second. In his work we still see a part of what was and we discover a part of what is to be.
I was probably born with the ability to draw, but that does not make you an artist.
- James Rosenquist
Collecting art is like a drug. It is both intensely pleasurable and highly addictive.
- Norman Rosenthal
The most important tool the artist fashions through constant practice is faith in his ability to produce miracles when they are needed. Pictures must be miraculous: the instant one is completed; the intimacy between the creation and the creator is ended. He is an outsider.
It is a widely accepted notion among painters that it does not matter what one paints as long as it is well painted. This is the essence of academicism. There is no such thing as good painting about nothing.
Art Quotes by Author - S
One might say that science itself, and civilization and art, are all about different orderings of the world -- to contain it, and to make it in some sense intelligible, communicable. And bearable.
- Oliver Sacks
What garlic is to salad, insanity is to art.
He who works with his hands is a laborer. He who works with his hands and his head is a craftsman. He who works with his hands and his head and his heart is an artist.
St Fancis of Assisi
Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it, we go nowhere.
- Carl Sagan
Ever since I started painting, I have tried to get the fluidity and surprise of image connection, the simultaneity of film montage, into painting.
Art is not a study of positive reality, it is the seeking for ideal truth.
- George Sand
Simplicity is the essence of the great, the true, and the beautiful in art.
- George Sand
An artist is a dreamer consenting to dream of the actual world.
Art is a shadow of what a person is thinking... a small glimpse of what they hold inside. Little secrets, regrets, joys... every line has its own meaning.
-Sarah, Los Cerros Middle School, 1999
Everytime I paint a portrait I lose a friend.
John Singer Sargent
I must see new things and investigate them. I want to taste dark water and see crackling trees and wild winds.
Art is the right hand of Nature. The latter has only given us being, the former has made us men.
I do dream about art, and images come to me in dreams. I am definitely hoping to be in touch with my subconscious. I expect a call any minute.
Treat a work of art like a prince. Let it speak to you first.
If I were a better artist, I'd be a painter, and if I were a better writer, I'd write books.. but I'm not, so I draw cartoons!
Charles M. Schulz
My imagination can picture no fairer happiness than to continue living for art.
To send light into the darkness of men's hearts - such is the duty of the artist.
All art is but imitation of nature.
-Lucius Annaeus Seneca
I'm not precious about my work. If you get it out into the urban field it's going to be used or misused but it'll also probably provide a way of people acknowledging what the aesthetic is about because people have to confront it every day.
They see poetry in what I have done. No. I apply my methods, and that is all there is to it.
The object of art is to give life a shape.
Without art, the crudeness of reality would make the world unbearable.
George Bernard Shaw
I was supporting myself, but nothing like the guy painters, as I refer to them. I always resented that actually.. we were all getting the same amount of press, but they were going gangbusters with sales.
I meet the world as it comes, yield superficially to the hustlers, and thus achieve peace of mind. With peace of mind comes a painting.
Beauty was darkness till she came.
Then paint her eyes, whose active light
Shall make the former shadows bright,
And with their every beam supply
New day, to draw her picture by.
Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks.
Every creator painfully experiences the chasm between his inner vision and its ultimate expression.
-Isaac Bashevis Singer
Art is the signature of civilizations.
I like living in the 20th century.. to me the world has never been more beautiful. I am trying to paint the real world I live in, as beautifully as I can with my own eyes.
Art, in itself, is an attempt to bring order out of chaos.
Interpretation is the revenge of the intellectual upon art.
- Susan Sontag
Every other artist begins with a blank canvas, a piece of paper the photographer begins with the finished product.
A writer should write with his eyes and a painter paint with his ears.
...it is in the nature of original contemporary art to present itself as a bad risk. And we the public...should be proud of being in this predicament, because nothing else would seem to us quite true to life; and art, after all, is supposed to be a mirror of life.
Art is like a border of flowers along the course of civilization.
Kandinsky was right to appreciate Cézanne. The emergence of triangularity in the ‘Large Bathers’ was an unconscious step in the right direction, a step about to break through the crust of the future’s pictorial surface. However, agile and muscular as it may have been, Cézanne’s triangle could not shake the pyramid anchoring Raphael’s composition. The dogged perseverance of this pyramid illuminates the mystical dead weight which Kandinsky and all abstract painting following him have always had difficulty accounting for, and which in the end we, if not they, cannot live without.
But, after all, the aim of art is to create space - space that is not compromised by decoration or illustration, space within which the subjects of painting can live.
I don't like a lot of the stuff that goes on in the art world, but it's hard to be old and like what goes on around you.
Grammar stops at love, and at art.
One of the best things about paintings is their silence - which prompts reflection and random reverie.
The pears are not viols,
Nudes or bottles.
They resemble nothing else.
They are yellow forms
Composed of curves
Bulging toward the base.
They are touched red.
They are not flat surfaces
Having curved outlines.
They are round
Tapering toward the top.
In the way they are modelled
There are bits of blue.
A hard dry leaf hangs
From the stem.
The yellow glistens.
It glistens with various yellows,
Citrons, oranges and greens
Flowering over the skin.
The shadows of the pears
Are blobs on the green cloth.
The pears are not seen
As the observer wills.
A painter paints pictures on canvas, but musicians paint their pictures on silence.
My dear Tristan, to be an artist at all is like living in Switzerland during a world war.
Great designers innovate, good designers emulate.
The artist's world is limitless. It can be found anywhere, far from where he lives or a few feet away. It is always on his doorstep.
Lesser artists borrow, great artists steal.
"I remember being handed a score composed by Mozart at the age of eleven. What could I say? I felt like de Kooning, who was asked to comment on a certain abstract painting, and answered in the negative. He was then told it was the work of a celebrated monkey. 'That's different. For a monkey, it's terrific.'"
I've been called many names like perfectionist, difficult and obsessive. I think it takes obsession, takes searching for the details for any artist to be good.
All the other colors are just colors, but purple seems to have a soul. Purple is not just a noun and an adjective but also a verb - when you look at it, it's looking back at you.
Everyone has a story that is only partially understood by others. Empathy heals the void in that story. Judgement opens the wound.
Trust has a price that is levied by experience. The value is subjective but final in it's decision.
Beware of alliances, especially those in the periphery. Friendship is more easily lost than maintained. History and integrity are the author of a lasting partnership.
There is no subject I can paint which is more frustrating and at the same time extremely satisfying than the figure.
Point of view is less in the positioning of the viewer and more in the time spent meditating the view.
There lies a balance somewhere between intimacy and aloofness or naiveté which must exist between the painter and his human subject or model. Intimacy or extreme familiarity creates conflict between what the artist has seen of the subjects soul and what he actually sees with human eyes. A battle ensues and most often the painter loses, is never satisfied, because the painter cannot paint the soul or essence of a person. The same applies with the self-portrait. The painter seeing his image in a contorted two-dimensional mirror, struggles with the sense of how he appears to others and the distorted view of his soul. This explains the painful process I have gone through in painting myself. A certain detachment is required. The opposite extreme being a purely imagined character with no similarities to any model, friend or figure the artist has viewed before. My point or theory being that the most moving portrait is of someone that captures the essence of humankind; one that any viewer can feel a sense of intimacy and mystery in the same moment; a picture that contains bits and pieces of the painters experience, existence and memory as well as current references and models.I suppose this theory is my goal and when I have achieved it in the past, it is quite apparent. People feel so intimately associated with the painting and yet are left with so many questions. People need to be left with questions, but these questions bring me to another related point: Answering these questions about my paintings is completely pointless and devalues the paintings worth, not only for the buyer, but the viewer. The collective human experience creates a sense of kinship with all people, but when art (in any medium) is specifically defined by the artist for the public, the viewing public has lost its need for art. The music becomes something to fill the air, the theater or ballet a place to fill a social quota or impress a date, the painting is then something to fill the space on the wall. This sickens me, because I know that most of the paying public is spending their money on art for these exact reasons. If there is a title, a description, a definition of every specific piece of art, then there is no naiveté, no mystery, there are no questions, no underlying connection and beauty. Then art ceases to be art; ceases to be priceless and becomes worthless.
Vision is the art of seeing what is invisible to others.
Art Quotes by Author - T
You can't cross the sea merely by standing and staring at the water.”
-- Rabindranath Tagore.
That's the motivation of an artist - to seek attention of some kind.
"Painting in watercolor is like walking a tight-rope; one must achieve a perfect balance between what the paint wants to do and what the artist wants to do, or all is lost."
-Mary C. Taylor
You can never do too much drawing.
Art is the only way to run away without leaving home.
This world is but a canvas to our imagination.
Henry David Thoreau
To affect the quality of the day, that is the highest of arts.
Henry David Thoreau
Art is not a pleasure, a solace, or an amusement; art is great matter. Art is an organ of human life, transmitting man's reasonable perception into feeling. In our age the common religious perception of men is the consciousness of the brotherhood of man-we know that the well-being of man lies in the union with his fellow men. True science should indicate the various methods of applying this consciousness to life. Art should transform this perception into feeling. The task of art is enormous. Through the influence of real art, aided by science, guided by religion, that peaceful co-operation of man is now obtained by external means-by law courts, police, charitable institutions, factory inspection, etc.-should be obtained by man's free and joyous activity. Art should cause violence to be set aside. And it is only art that can accomplish this.
-Leo N. Tolstoy
Art renders accessible to men of the latest generations all the feelings experienced by their predecessors and also those felt by their best and foremost contemporaries . . . [Art] is a means of union among men, joining them together in the same feeling . . . Art is a human activity consisting in this, that one man consciously by means of certain external signs, hands on to others feelings he has lived through, and that others are infected by those feelings and also experience them . . . A real work of art destroys in the consciousness of the recipient the separation between himself and the artist, and . . . also between himself and all whose minds receive this work of art. In this freeing of our personality from its separation and isolation, in this uniting of it with others, lies the chief characteristic and the great attractive force of art.
-Leo Tolstoy, "What is Art?"
It has been said that art is a tryst, for in the joy of it maker and beholder meet.
The artist does not see things as they are, but as he is.
In our time there are many artists who do something because it is new; they see their value and their justification in this newness. They are deceiving themselves; novelty is seldom the essential. This has to do with one thing only; making a subject better from its intrinsic nature.
Henri de Toulouse Lautrec
Immature artists imitate. Mature artists steal.
Art is parasitic on life, just as criticism is parasitic on art.
-Harry S. Truman
All art requires courage.
You can't depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus.
- Mark Twain
When I work, I work very fast, but preparing to work can take any length of time.
If Michelangelo had been straight, the Sistine Chapel would have been wallpapered.
Every product of disgust capable of becoming a negation of the family is Dada; a protest with the fists of its whole being engaged in destructive action: Dada; knowledge of all the means rejected up until now by the shamefaced sex of comfortable compromise and good manners: Dada; abolition of logic, which is the dance of those impotent to create: Dada; of every social hierarchy and equation set up for the sake of values by our valets: Dada; every object, all objects, sentiments, obscurities, apparitions and the precise clash of parallel lines are weapons for the fight: Dada; abolition of memory: Dada; abolition of archaeology: Dada; abolition of prophets: Dada; abolition of the future: Dada; absolute and unquestionable faith in every god that is the immediate product of spontaneity: Dada; elegant and unprejudiced leap from a harmony to the other sphere; trajectory of a word tossed like a screeching phonograph record; to respect all individuals in their folly of the moment: whether it be serious, fearful, timid, ardent, vigorous, determined, enthusiastic; to divest one's church of every useless cumbersome accessory; to spit out disagreeable or amorous ideas like a luminous waterfall, or coddle them - with the extreme satisfaction that it doesn't matter in the least - with the same intensity in the thicket of one's soul - pure of insects for blood well-born, and gilded with bodies of archangels. Freedom: Dada Dada Dada, a roaring of tense colors, and interlacing of opposites and of all contradictions, grotesques, inconsistencies: LIFE
-Tristan Tzara, "Dada Manifesto"
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He (Vincent) has painted a few portraits which have turned out well, but he always does them for no payment. It is a pity that he does not want to earn something, for if he did want to he could make something here, but you can't change a person.
Theo van Gogh
It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality, is more important than the feeling for pictures.
Vincent Van Gogh
Human beings have always been creative. The guys who were making the pyramids.. and archaeological research has showed us this.. had little figurines made by the workers, to express their devotion to their god.
Art is the symbol of the two noblest human efforts: to construct and to refrain from destruction.
- Simone Weil
Any authentic work of art must start an argument between the artist and his audience.
- Dame Rebecca West
The fine art of painting, which is the bastard of alchemy, always has been always will be, a game. The rules of the game are quite simple: in a given arena, on as many psychic fronts as the talent allows, one must visually describe, the centre of the meaning of existence.
Science is out of the reach of morals, for her eyes are fixed upon eternal truths. Art is out of the reach of morals, for her eyes are fixed upon things beautiful and immortal and ever-changing. To morals belong the lower and less intellectual spheres.
You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget that errand."
- Woodrow Wilson.