Friday, October 30, 2009

"There is nothing new under the sun." Ecclesiastes 1:9

Read in the current issue of Art in America that John Baldesarri, while teaching at Cal Arts years ago, had a special stamp he liked to use. He had a T.A. order one that said, "Nice idea, but it's been done before by ___________. He laughed and said he'd never say something like that to a student today, because of course everything truly has been done.

Also read somewhere else that Picasso, during a late night rant, "fell to shouting that he had "discovered photography and might as well kill himself, as he had nothing left to learn." (p. 111, Modigliani by Jack Flam.

Below is Nose and Ears, Etc.: Couple and Man with Gun.

So I guess it's time to stop being so disturbed by questions of originality and just get to work. I have one corner of a painting that's working. As my Otis instructor suggested, it helps to cover up the part that's working. Then you won't mess it up by over-working it. I've stumbled on the fact that letting it fragment while you work is helpful.

I think fragmentation comes naturally, as evidenced by the look of my house today. . .

1 comment:

  1. My dad used to say that there were only three songs ever written, and everything else was Variation on a Theme.