A Little Note, A Little Beauty


It is not in the role of an artist to worry about life – to feel responsible for creating a better world.  This is a very serious distraction.  All your conditioning has been directed toward intellectual living.  This is useless in artwork.  All human knowledge is useless in artwork.  Concepts, relationships, categories, classifications, deductions are distractions of mind that we wish to hold free for inspiration.

There are two parts of the mind.  The other mind that records facts and the inner mind that says ‘yes’ and ‘no.’  When you think of something that you should do, the inner mind says ‘yes’ and you feel elated.  This is inspiration.

For an artists this is the only way.  There is no help anywhere.  He must listen to his own mind.

The way of the artist is an entirely different way.  It is a way of surrender.  He must surrender to his his own mind


When life changes, you gotta find a new way to be.  This is much harder than you can possibly imagine.


It is quite commonly thought that the intellect is responsible for everything that is made and done.  It is commonly thought that everything that is can be put into words.  But there is a wide range of emotional response that we make that cannot be put into words.  We are so used to making these emotional responses that we are not consciously aware of them until they are represented in artwork.

Our emotional life is really dominant over our intellectual life, but we do not realize it.


I’m still looking for that new trajectory, but finding solace in making pictures.


We make artwork as something that we have to do, not knowing how it will work out.  When it is finished we have to see if it is effective.  Even if we obey inspiration we cannot expect all the work be be successful.  An artist is a person who can recognize failure.


A number of years ago, I read Uncontrollable Beauty by David Shapiro and Bill Beckley.  The book blew me away, a great inspiration.  The last essay in the book is a little piece by Agnes Martin, “Beauty is the Mystery of Life.”  I haven’t read her essay in years, until just the other day.

AgnesMartin_MT 400px

To progress in life you must give up the things that you do not like.  Give up doing the things that you do like to do.  You must find the things that you do like – the things that are acceptable to your mind.

You can see that you will have to have time to yourself to find out what appeals to your mind.  While you go along with others, you are not really living your life.

To rebel against others is just as futile.  You must find your way.

Happiness is being in the beam with life – to feel the pull of life.


The pull of life.  Art is really about feeling this pull, and feeling fully connected to life.  Nothing more really matters.



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