September 23, 2008

Why painters keep painting

In the NY Times Holland Cotter explains why Giorgio Morandi kept painting, even after his hands became shaky and his eyesight started to fail. "You might ask other artist-poets this question: Joseph Albers, say, or Paul Klee or Agnes Martin or a New York artist I know who sits down at his apartment desk for two hours every day — only two, but always two — to embroider small squares of raw canvas with abstract patterns in silk thread. The work is close, slow and painstaking, done stitch by stitch, row by row — letter by letter, line by line — in calligraphic loops and tufts. An inch of embroidery, approximately the size of a sonnet quatrain, takes months to complete. But the work goes on. Because it is controllable reality. It is a form of thinking that frees up thought. It is time-consuming, but time-slowing, isolating but self-fulfilling. It is a part of life, but also a metaphor for how life should be: with everything in place, every pattern clear, every rhyme exact, every goal near." Read more.

Related posts:
Morandi: "I don't ask for anything except for a bit of peace which is indispensable for me to work."

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