For Tuesday, January 1, 2019:
May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art – write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in [this] year, you surprise yourself.
The Smart Witch meme on Facebook (h/t CO’N)
For Friday, November 30, 2018:
Art can make a difference because it pulls people up short. It says, don’t accept things for their face value; you don’t have to go along with any of this; you can think for yourself.
Jeanette Winterson, in an interview with Canadian broadcaster Eleanor Wachtel later published in More Writers & Company: New Conversations with CBC Radio’s Eleanor Wachtel
For Friday, October 5, 2018:
You must not fear, hold back, count or be a miser with your thoughts and feelings. It is also true that creation comes from an overflow, so you have to learn to intake, to imbibe, to nourish yourself and not be afraid of fullness. The fullness is like a tidal wave which then carries you, sweeps you into experience and into writing. Permit yourself to flow and overflow, allow for the rise in temperature, all the expansions and intensifications. Something is always born of excess: great art was born of great terrors, great loneliness, great inhibitions, instabilities, and it always balances them.
Anaïs Nin, THE DIARY OF ANAIS NIN, VOL. 4
For Friday, August 17, 2018:
Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone else decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they are deciding, make even more art.
For Tuesday, August 7, 2018:
The whole culture is telling you to hurry, while the art tells you to take your time. Always listen to the art.
Junot Diaz (h/t AWE)
For Friday, July 27, 2018:
Good art is good for people precisely because it is not fantasy but imagination. It breaks the grip of our own dull fantasy life and stirs us to the effort of true vision. … Great art is liberating, it enables us to see and take pleasure in what is not ourselves. Literature stirs and satisfies our curiosity, it interests us in other people and other scenes, and helps us to be tolerant and generous. Art is informative. And even mediocre art can tell us something, for instance about how other people live. But to say this is not to hold a utilitarian or didactic view of art. Art is larger than such narrow ideas.
Iris Murdoch, EXISTENTIALISTS AND MYSTICS: WRITINGS ON PHILOSOPHY AND LITERATURE
For Tuesday, May 22, 2018:
When I see a viewer fall into a painting I have painted, I feel connected to what I really know. It doesn’t all happen just for me, I am a translator. It’s shared and a mystery. When a viewer falls into that with me, I love it. It’s real to me. It’s vulnerable, it moves and I dig that.
Leon Hushcha, 2018
(The Art of Leon Hushcha, solo exhibition at the Museum of Russian Art in Minneapolis, Minnesota)
For Tuesday, May 15, 2018:
[The artist] has only to translate the sufferings and happiness of all into the language of all and he will be universally understood. As a reward for being absolutely faithful to reality, he will achieve complete communication among men.
Albert Camus, ‘Create Dangerously,’ RESISTANCE, REBELLION, AND DEATH
For Tuesday, May 8, 2018:
… However glorious the history of art, the history of artists is quite a different matter. And in any well-ordered household the very thought that one of the young men may turn out to be an artist can be a cause for general alarm. It may be a point of great pride to have a Van Gogh on the living room wall, but the prospect of having Van Gogh himself in the living room would put a good many devoted art lovers to rout …
Ben Shahn, ‘On Nonconformity,’ THE SHAPE OF CONTENT
For Friday, March 9, 2018:
Art is a public possession, because the formation of ‘felt life’ is the heart of any culture, and molds the objective life for the people. It is their school of feeling, and their defense against outer and inner chaos. It is only when nature is organized in imagination along lines congruent with the forms of feeling that we can understand it … Then intellect and emotion are unopposed, life is symbolized by its setting, the world seems important and beautiful and intuitively ‘grasped.’
Suzanne Langer, FEELING AND FORM: A THEORY OF ART
(Quoted in CHANGE OF COURSE: THE EDUCATION OF JESSIE ADAMSON, a novel by Margaret M. Blanchard, pg. 139)