To better understand and appreciate abstract art, the artists own words can be a useful guide.
Some quotes are deep and profound. Some are difficut and obscure. Some are strange and puzzling. Others give an insight into their thinking and execution.
1. Abstraction is real, probably more real than nature. I prefer to see with closed eyes. (Josef Albers)
2. When I paint, I liberate monsters... They are the manifestations of all the doubts, searches and groping for meaning and expression which all artists experience... One does not choose the content, one submits to it. (Pierre Alechinsky)
3. When a painter thinks to disengage from the world outside himself and fantasies unprecedented forms he thinks he will make a painting, he finds in this expression the same effect - I would even say the same picture - that he had unconsciously acquired by his habit to experience reality intensely. (Pierre Alechinsky)
4. People think you can get out your canvas and paint any time you have a free moment. You can’t. Commercial art and painting are entirely different. Painting takes a different mental approach. You have to get the right attitude, the right mood. (Pierre Alechinsky)
5. Abstraction demands more from me than realism. Instead of reproducing something outside of me,
now I go inward and use everything I’ve learned thus far in my life. (Susan Avishai)
6. Abstract art today needs no defense. It has become one of the many ways to paint or carve or model. But it is not yet a kind of art which people like without some study and some sacrifice of prejudice. (Alfred H. Barr Jr.)
7. If you work with abstract painting for a period of time, you may come to think of it as a melody, a song, a piece of beautiful music. (Judi Betts)
8. All paintings are abstract. Some abstract paintings also have pictorial representation or narrative content, but in essence they are first and foremost abstract because we have only paint. (Robert Bissett)
pattern or shape of reality. I want just the flash of its spirit. (Constantin Brancusi)
9. Abstract art is a fundamental distrust of the theory of reality concocted by the eyes. (Robert Brault)
10. When you see a fish you don’t think of its scales, do you? You think of its speed, its floating, flashing body seen through the water... If I made fins and eyes and scales, I would arrest its movement, give a pattern or shape of reality. I want just the flash of its spirit. (Constantin Brancusi)