Quotes and excerpts

Progressive art can assist people to learn not only about the objective forces at work in the society in which they live, but also about the intensely social character of their interior lives. Ultimately, it can propel people toward social emancipation.
-Salvador Dali

Each one of these bodies ( works he made) certainly signifies something, but it is only once there is nothing left for me to change that I begin to look for its meaning, that I give it a name. 
- Hans Jean Arp


The realization that reason and anti-reason, sense and nonsense, design and chance, consciousness and unconsciousness, belong together as necessary parts of a whole - this was the central message of Dada.
-Hans Richter

Abstract paintings are like fictitious models because they visualise a reality which we can neither see nor describe but which we nevertheless conclude exists. We attract negative names to this reality: the un-known, the un-graspable, the  infinite, and for thousands of years we have depicted it in terms of absolute images like heaven and hell...Paintings are better the more intelligent, the more beautiful, the more mad, the more extreme, the more evident, the more incomprehensible their way of showing this incomprehensible reality.
- Gerhard Richter

‘I’d already repudiated the word, because many other people before that were using it. It was a catch word. You remember everybody went around going, “What’s happening, baby?”
…I remember one ad showed a floating woman in outer space, a starry background, and the legend was, “I dreamt I was in a happening in my Maidenform brassiere.”
So by that time movies and the Supremes and all were in general usage around the word in ways that had nothing to do with my original sense, which became so foreign to me that I just dropped it. However, it’s like your name, you can’t drop it without somebody coming and picking it up and saying, “You dropped something mister.”
Allen Kaprow (regarding the term 'The Happening')

Our heads are round so that thoughts can change direction.
-Francis Picabia

For me there is no gap between my painting and my so-called 'decorative' work. I never considered the 'minor arts' to be artistically frustrating; on the contrary, it was an extension of my art. 
-Sonia Delaunay

A copy of the universe is not what is required of art; one of the damned things is ample.
-REBECCA WEST 


A certain amount of contempt for the material employed to express an idea is indispensable to the purist realization of the idea.
Man Ray


To approach the spiritual in art, one will make as little use as possible of reality, because reality is opposed to the spiritual. 
-Piet Mondrian


There is no commerce between so-called artistic painting (which claims the exclusive right to this title) and that which is more moderately called house painting, or interior decorating. They don't know each other, don't speak to each other. This is not good. Come on! Do both kinds of people spend their entire working lives with the same colours; thickening them, thinning them, applying them in all sorts of ways, yet not giving each other the slightest bit of advice? Can it be that they just do not meet? I once helped out an artist at the very beginning of his career. He walked past a paint merchant's, where there were large tins and barrels of paint of every sort of pigment, draws full of the most stunning powders, without so much as a sidelong glance - he quickened his step. At a stationer's shop, he bought six small tubes of special artists' colours, smaller than those used for Vaseline or Seccotine. Back home he squeezed a little from each tube, and sat down in front of an apple. Under his window a workman, armed with some cans of paint, was working on a lifesize shop sign of an innkeeper presenting a menu. But he noticed neither the workman nor his work. I met this artist twenty years later. He was still painting apples with his small tubes of paint. I mentioned the picture of the innkeeper on the facade of his house. It never occurred to him to look at it, he told me. I also mentioned the colours of his studio walls but he told me that artists are distracted and quirky people, so profoundly absorbed in their work that they never take note of things like that.
- Jean Dubuffet


If you're not trying to be real, you don't have to get it right. That's art.
-Andy Warhol


Art doesn't go to sleep in the bed made for it. It would sooner run away than say its own name: what it likes is to be incognito. Its best moments are when it forgets what its own name is.
-Jean Dubuffet


Color is the essence of painting, which the subject always killed. 
-Kasimir Malevich


A picture lives by companionship, expanding and quickening in the eyes of the sensitive observer. It dies by the same token. It is therefore risky to send it out into the world. How often it must be impaired by the eyes of the unfeeling and the cruelty of the impotent.
-Mark Rothko 


Those who do not want to imitate anything, produce nothing.
-Salvador Dali


It is most important that we should rid art of all that it has contained of ‘recognizable material’ to date, all familiar subject matter, all traditional ideas, all popular symbols must be banished forthwith. More important still, we must hold enormous faith in ourselves; it is essential that the revelation we receive, the conception of an image which embraces a certain thing, which has no sense in itself, which has no subject, which means ‘absolutely nothing’ from the logical point of view.. ..should speak so strongly in us, evoke such agony or joy, that we feel compelled to paint.
- Giorgio de Chirico


Cardboard/Metal

Love cardboard.
The cheap corrugated paper, the grey carton lid, the black adhesive tape. Something out of nothing!
That is how creation begins. What is
valueless has value. What is valuable is suspect. Possessions!
Customs admit the cardboard relief. It is valueless, is no possession.
But copper is beautiful, or brass, aluminium, iron. Metal is more intense than cardboard, harder, more glistening, or 
else more dull. More aggressive. Less yielding.
I love metal.
It resists. It dictates its own rhythm. It shines. It is proud… So very different from the friendlier cardboard which adapts 
itself willingly to chance, and remains undiscovered.
- Hans Richter


Every artist is crazy with respect to ordinary life.
 - Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven


The mind loves the unknown. It loves images whose meaning is unknown, since the meaning of the mind itself is unknown.
 - Rene Magritte


The flux of life is pouring its aesthetic aspect into your eyes, your ears - and you ignore it because you are looking for your canons of beauty in some sort of frame or glass case or tradition. 
― Mina Loy


We speak of concrete and not abstract painting because nothing is more concrete, more real than a line, a colour, a surface. (1925)
Theo van Doesburg


Art needs an operation 
- Tristan Tzara


I force myself to contradict myself in order to avoid conforming to my own taste.
- Marcel Duchamp


All critics should be assassinated.
- Man Ray


You'll never know why you exist, but you'll always allow yourselves to be easily persuaded to take life seriously. 
― Tristan Tzara


All in all, the creative act is not performed by the artist alone.  The spectator brings the work in contact with the external world by deciphering and interpreting its inner qualifications and thus adds his contribution to the creative act. 
― Marcel Duchamp


The creative ability of an artist is manifested only if he succeeds in transforming the natural phenomena into 'another reality.' This part of the creative process as an independent element, if conscious and developed, hints at the possibility of creating a painting. 
- Frantisek Kupka


Art is a guarantee of sanity.  That is the most important thing I have said. 
 - Louise Bourgeois


To those talking behind my back: my ass is looking at you. 

- Francis Picabia


A creator needs only one enthusiast to justify him.

to be continued.....................





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