Art Quotes

Reply Fri 14 Nov, 2003 08:54 pm
Two quotes from 19th century artists, but I can't remember which ones:

'The painting is the death of the sketch."

"A portrait is a painting of a person with something just a little bit wrong about the nose."

On the theme of Whistler, I like the story about how he treated his creditors--and there were many--with utmost courtesy. Once a bill collector visited him, and Whistler served an expensive wine.

"I am surprised one with so many debts would be serving so fine a wine," the collector sniffed.

"Don't worry," Whistler assured him, "I haven't paid for this either."
Reply Mon 22 Mar, 2004 09:51 pm
I like this one from Max Protech, the famed NY art dealer "...Most businesses research a market and work toward supplying an existing demand. It's just the opposite in dealing art. The serious dealer looks for art he likes and tries to convince the world of its importance."
This to me hits home at the quirky position of making a life for oneself as an artist.
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Reply Wed 7 Jul, 2004 12:18 am
Here's one I was surprised I didn't find in this thread.

Morality, like art, means drawing a line someplace.
-- Oscar Wilde (1856-1900)
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Reply Thu 8 Jul, 2004 11:16 am
Abryant. We might add that "Morallity, like art, is at its very best sometimes when rules are broken."
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Reply Sat 10 Jul, 2004 09:31 pm
Joseph Addison 1672-1719

There is sometimes a greater judgement shewn in deviating from the rules of art, than adhering to them; and...there is more beauty in the works of a great genius who is ignorant of all the rules of art, than in the works of a little genius, who not only knows but scrupulously observes them.

Part of this quote fits me to a tee, it's the.. "who is ignorant of all the rules of art" part.
I've been teaching myself how to draw for a year and I love it. I just finished drawing an apple with a #2 pencil and some of my daughters crayola pencils, I showed my neighbor and he said it looks like I took a photograph, {-:I took that as a compliment :-} But I have a dilemma. See "art dilemma"
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Reply Sat 10 Jul, 2004 09:41 pm
Yeah, Paulaj, it's like that.
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Reply Thu 19 Aug, 2004 02:56 pm
"Art never expresses anything but itself." Oscar Wilde

I consider this a nice response to the expressionist's claim that art is the externalization of his inner life. My inner life,
frankly, is ineffable even though it informs everything I do.
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Reply Fri 20 Aug, 2004 05:28 pm
"Art is literacy of the heart" ~ Elliot Eisner
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Reply Fri 20 Aug, 2004 05:51 pm
Do my eyes deceive me? Is Joanne back?
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Reply Fri 20 Aug, 2004 06:02 pm
Yes and I have some time this afternoon.

I am happily ensconced in San Diego now and for a change very busy. And loving it. First it was a trip to Sebastopol, Sonoma County to visit friends high in the red woods and close to the Russian River.

Then a week in the Santa Cruz Mountains overlooking the Monterey Peninsula and again surrounded by redwoods.

Life has been really tough on me lately, hehe. Lots and lots of sketches on paper and running around in my head.

Probably will be painting lots of trees and mountains and beautiful golden hills for awhile.

School starts on Monday so I hope to have more time at home alone. David is only teaching three classes this semester but he will still be very bus as he got suckered into being Department head.
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Reply Fri 20 Aug, 2004 06:28 pm
At which school does he teach? I went to UCSD, in the early 70s.
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Reply Thu 28 Oct, 2004 11:15 am
You can't beat Kipling:

The Conundrum of the Workshops
When the flush of a new-born sun fell first on Eden's green and gold,

Our father Adam sat under the Tree and scratched with a stick in the

And the first rude sketch that the world had seen was joy to his

mighty heart,

Till the Devil whispered behind the leaves, "It's pretty, but is it Art?"

Wherefore he called to his wife, and fled to fashion his work anew --

The first of his race who cared a fig for the first, most dread review;

And he left his lore to the use of his sons -- and that was a glorious


When the Devil chuckled "Is it Art?" in the ear of the branded Cain.

They builded a tower to shiver the sky and wrench the stars apart,
Till the Devil grunted behind the bricks "It's striking, but is it Art?"

The stone was dropped at the quarry-side and the idle derrick


While each man talked of the aims of Art, and each in an alien


They fought and they talked in the North and the South, they talked

and they fought in the West,

Till the waters rose on the pitiful land, and the poor Red Clay had

rest --

Had rest til the dank, blank-canvas dawn when the dove was

preened to start,

And the Devil bubbled below the keel: "It's human, but is it Art?"

The tale is as old as the Eden Tree -- and new as the new-cut tooth --

For each man knows ere his lip-thatch grows he is master of Art and


And each man hears as the twilight nears, to the beat of his dying


The Devil drum on the darkened pane: "You did it, but was it Art?"

We have learned to whittle the Eden Tree to the shape of a surplice-


We have learned to bottle our parents twain in the yelk of an addled


We know that the tail must wag the dog, for the horse is drawn by the


But the Devil whoops, as he whooped of old: "It's clever, but is it


When the flicker of London sun falls faint on the Club-room's green

and gold,

The sons of Adam sit them down and scratch with their pens in the

mould --

They scratch with their pens in the mould of their graves, and the ink

and the anguish start,

For the Devil mutters behind the leaves: "It's pretty, but is it Art?"

Now if we could win to the Eden Tree where the Four Great Rivers,


And the Wreath of Eve is red on the turf as she left it long ago,

And if we could come when the sentry slept and softly scurry


By the favour of God we might know as much as out father Adam knew.

Rudyard Kipling (1865 - 1936)
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Reply Mon 27 Dec, 2004 12:51 pm
"Comprehensiveness is the enemy of art."

Joel Achenbach, in his article, "Tom Wolfe, Way Cool Under the Collar", Washington Post, 12/27/04
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Reply Mon 27 Dec, 2004 06:13 pm
The closing line, "Getting old sucks" applies only to those who cannot, or refuse to, get old honestly (gracefully).
Yes, comprehensiveness is the enemy of art. Saying too much or explaining too much leaves the viewer out of the process. That is the death of art for the viewer. But that also applies to the artist since she is--primus inter pares--among the viewers: art must have some ambiguity and mystery for everyone involved.
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Reply Mon 27 Dec, 2004 06:47 pm
What about "Old age is not for sissies."
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Reply Mon 27 Dec, 2004 06:51 pm
I am not so ready to take the reviewer's pov on the book for granted as a reason for me not to read it: with Wolfe I expect to find some interesting material even if the book doesn't work as a whole. I did like the critic's line about comprehensiveness though.
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Reply Mon 27 Dec, 2004 09:57 pm
The reviewer was very critical of Wolfe's latest work, saying that its characters did not breathe, that they were merely tools of the author. I saw that in the novels of Aldous Huxley as well. His characters were vehiclels for philosophical and moral principles--important as they were. I think Huxley was aware that his novels were really essays.
The reviewer states that Updike was one of Wolfe's few contemporary equals (i.e., in the same league). I would definitely include Philip Roth.
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Reply Mon 27 Dec, 2004 10:05 pm
I will probably read it, though I didn't get around to reading Man in Full. My favorite book lately, Neil Gordon's The Company You Keep, is something entirely different, that brought me to relate to many of the characters, antagonistic to each other though they were, as opposed to seeing them as author's formulations. With Wolfe I'd be expecting some words punching the air and watching to see if they could fly. And, they might, even in a failed book.
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Reply Tue 28 Dec, 2004 01:47 pm
"When you are through with sex, ambition, what can an old man create? Art of course, a piece of art will go beyond him into the lives of young people, the people who have not had time to create. The old man meets the young people and lives on." William Carlos Williams
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Reply Tue 28 Dec, 2004 01:49 pm
Nice one, Joanne.
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