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Art is an illusion that tells the truth.



"I felt (and continue to feel) that an abstract painting can be the fullest and most complete expression of our sophisticated and highly urbanized society, as well as an expression of who made it, and the natural world around us. "

........Piri Halasz, From the Mayor's Doorstep, December 2001/January 2002 Issue


Nonetheless, pure abstract art will endure, in part because it keeps alive the idea of quality -- or of the possibility of quality -- in an art world that is all but indifferent to it. Quality may in fact be a dead idea. It is certainly beside the point of all the ideological/advocacy art around. Pure abstract art will also endure because there will always be a human need for a separate, seemingly sacred space -- if only in the metaphorical form of art -- in which one can find sanctuary from the swindle of the world, as Adorno called it, and recover a sense of what it means to be, in all one's uniqueness.

.......Donald Kuspit


Faites des lignes, beaucoup de lignes, soit d'après le souvenir, soit d'après nature, et vous serez un bon artiste.


Importance is derived from the immanence of infinitude in the finite.
But expression is founded on the finite occasion. It is the activity of finitude impressing itself on its environment. The laws of nature are large average effects which reign impersonally. Whereas, there is nothing average about expression....

...............A. N. Whitehead

"Deleuze says that it's something quite marvelous, a whole evolution, and when one is old, one has a certain idea of what one hopes to do that becomes increasingly pure, more and more purified. Deleuze says he conceives of the famous Japanese line drawings, lines that are so pure and then there is nothing, nothing but little lines. That's how he conceives of an old man's project, something that would be so pure, so nothing, and at the same time, everything, marvelous. He means this as reaching a sobriety, something that can only come late in life."

..............From an Interview with Gilles Deleuze (<Gilles Deleuze's ABC Primer, with Claire Parnet>
Directed by Pierre-André Boutang (1996)

"In this kind of manifestation of Zen, I think there is something unique, something both extraordinary and artistic. When in the raising of a hand or in a single step something of Zen is present, that Zen content seems to me to possess a very specific, artistic quality. A narrow conception of art might not accept that such manifestations contain anything artistic, but to me it seems that they possess an artistic quality that ordinarily cannot be seen. In fact, in such vital workings of Zen, I believe that something not merely artistic but also beyond art is involved, something toward which art should aim as its goal."

..............Zen in Fine Art, H. S. Hisamatsu

"I like to look at the intellectual side of things, but I don't like the word "intellect." For me intellect is too dry a word, too inexpressive. I like the word "belief." In general when people say "I know," they don't know, they believe. Well, for my part, I believe that art is the only form of activity in which man, as man, shows himself to be a true individual who is capable of going beyond the animal state. Art is an outlet towards regions which are not ruled by space and time. To live is to believe, that's my belief."

..............Marcel Duchamp to James Johnson Sweeney

"(abstract paintings)....." make visible a reality that we can neither see or describe, but whose existence we can postulate. We denote this reality in negative terms : the unknown, the incomprehensible, the infinite.

In abstract painting we have found a better way of gaining access to the unvisualizable, the incomprehensible ; because abstract painting deploys the most visual immediacy - all of the resources of art in fact - in order to depict "nothing" ......"

.............Gerhard Richter

"In art the mass of people no longer seeks consolation and exaltation, but those who are refined, rich, unoccupied, who are distillers of quintessences, seek what is new, strange, original, extravagant, scandalous. I myself, since cubism and before, have satisfied these masters and critics with all the changing oddities which passed through my head, and the less they understood me the more they admired me."

.............Picasso to Giovanni Papini, in Libro Nero,1952

Philosophy, however, rarely transcends its epoch. It lasts only until it is time for human knowledge to make another leap, to go beyond itself once more. But, if anything human is eternal, art is eternal. Unintended, spontaneous, it is closest to our lives : Like life itself, it is purposeless. Its only end is art itself. It is created painfully and by necessity, just as life is lived painfully and by necessity."

.............Milovan Djilas

"Our obsession with the idea of genius has led us into another fallacy : that the style is the man. But just as in physics we begin to realize the extent of our knowledge what we can know and what we can never know so in art we have reached the extremes in techniques. We have used words in all the extreme ways, sounds in all the extreme ways, shapes and colours in all the extreme ways; all that remains is to use them within the bounds of the extreme ways already developed. We have reached the end of our field. Now we must come back, and discover other occupations than reaching the end of fields.

What will matter finally is intention ; not instrumentation. It will be skill in expressing one's meaning with styles, not just in one style carefully selected and developed to signal one's individuality rather than to satisfy the requirements of the subject matter. This is not to remove the individual from art or to turn artistic creation into a morass of pastiche ; if the artist has any genuine originality it will pierce through all its disguises. The whole meaning and commitment of the person who creates will permeate his creations, however varied their outward form."

............the Aristos.......John Fowles

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