Marja-Leena Rathje
Home ::: artists' quotes

artists' quotes


Words of my own fail me today, but these artists' words sustain and inspire me:

"Nature is not only all that is visible to the eye.. it also includes the inner pictures of the soul." - Edvard Munch

"I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way--things I had no words for." - Georgia O'Keeffe

"Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up."
"Painting is just another way of keeping a diary." - Pablo Picasso

"The only thing I know is that I paint because I need to, and I paint whatever passes through my head without any other consideration." - Frida Kahlo

"I like making work in my studio day in and day out, but I'm not so interested in the business side." - Jenny Saville

"There were only five galleries in those days, and the artists really depended on each other socially, psychologically, and even critically. It's impossible now. Business sure screwed up the art world universally." - Robert Rauschenburg


An older post with quotations on art

Marja-Leena | 07/06/2005 | 3 comments
themes: Being an Artist, Other artists


The O'Keefe and Kahlo quotes are especially interesting to me, because I'm fascinated by the relationship between the visual (or musical) imagination and what philosophers have traditionally understood as Thought. Of course, what they told us in school was that artists, poets and musicians are all about "expressing their feelings" - as if art is just so much emotionalism, or materials for therapy.

I hand-lettered one of my favorite quotes about poetry on a piece of yellow birch bark; it hangs on the wall right beside me here: "Poetry is prose bewitched, a music made of visual thoughts, the sound of an idea." - Mina Loy

I particularly identify with O'Keeffe, because my "thoughts" are very visual and I struggle to put those into words.

That is a marvellous quote, Dave - I am going to save it!

I like the Munch quote, it is true of the best artists and is applicable to all who look closely at the world.