*an ongoing series of quotations – mostly from artists, to artists – that offers wisdom, inspiration, and advice for the sometimes lonely road we are on.
I must not eat much in the evening, and I must work alone. I think that going into society from time to time, or just going out and seeing people, does not do much harm to one’s work and spiritual progress, in spite of what many so-called artists say to the contrary. Associating with people of that kind is far more dangerous; their conversation is always commonplace. I must go back to being alone. Moreover, I must try to live austerely, as Plato did. How can one keep one’s enthusiasm concentrated on a subject when one is always at the mercy of other people and in constant need of their society? Dufresne was perfectly right; the things we experience for ourselves when we are alone are much stronger and much fresher. However pleasant it may be to communicate one’s emotion to a friend there are too many fine shades of feeling to be explained, and although each probably perceives them, he does so in his own way and thus the impression is weakened for both. Since Dufresne has advised me to go to Italy alone, and to live alone once I am settled there, and since I, myself, see the need for it, why not begin now to become accustomed to the life; all the reforms I desire will spring from that? My memory will return, and so will my presence of mind, and my sense of order.
The Journal of Eugene Delacroix edited by Hubert Wellington
Comments are welcome!
* an ongoing series of quotations – mostly from artists, to artists – that offers wisdom, inspiration, and advice for the sometimes lonely road we are on.
The times in between things are always very hard for me, and there have been times when I felt that I’d never have an idea again, or that I’ve explored everything that I possibly can because as the years go on you have the backpack of your history. How do I find something new to work with? I read a beautiful book by Mable Dodge Luhan, who lived in New Mexico and started Ghost Ranch in the 1920s. She married a Native American, Tony Luhan, who lived in the Taos pueblo. She said that she noticed in the pueblo that in the winter everybody had very soft moccasins and they tiptoed around. They hardly talked at all and it was very, very quiet. She asked why they did that, and they said, “Mother Earth needs to rest. We are making it so that Mother Earth can rest so that in spring she can come forth.” I felt that that was so comforting; to actually nurture those times where it seems so empty, to have faith that something will happen if you savor those times, not try to push against them or fight them.
Meredith Monk quoted in Conversations with Anne: Twenty-four Interviews, by Anne Bogart
Comments are welcome!