The important thing is not to read them. Absorb them. Study the image. Find the message woven into the artist’s work. Don’t just look at the words. In a good graphic novel the words and the images are involved in a dance – like two stars smashing into each other, spraying silver and gold.
“[W]ork never leaves my mind. I’m always looking, thinking, taking pictures with my phone – of a splat on the street or a ship bow down at Mission Bay. I pretty much remember everything – or I’ll bark it into my recorder.”
I have always seen it as a kind of parental duty to show my own children beautiful stuff, and in doing so reveal to them an alternate world. By beautiful, I mean interesting, inspiring, ambiguous, challenging and sometimes dangerous things that exist within the world of art.
“I can’t really explain why I got hypnotised by art. I don’t really know how I managed to get there from where I was. It’s sort of inexplicable to me, but I used to look at books. I loved these books and they had almost this kind of religious importance to me. And the ones that were the most approachable were these books by Thames & Hudson called The World of Art.”
How Van Gogh’s Chair got him into art school:
“When I was trying to get into art school I had to find something that I could do, that I could teach myself, because I was self-taught. And, some of these things, I can see, are a bit too complicated, but I thought this painting looked as if anybody could have painted it. It seemed as if it was something I could do myself. So I made all these little Van Gogh’s and I got my portfolio together and I got turned down by eleven art schools. All of them. And it was unbelievably discouraging. And finally I came upon an art school that had a little vocational course – not a degree course – in Croydon. So I applied and I miraculously got in. And that’s the beginning.”
“I don’t have self-doubt. I don’t have doubt and I don’t think that doubt is useful, or constructive. It doesn’t create anything. You have to have faith and commitment and belief to do something that hasn’t been done before or to create something extraordinary. It’s already difficult enough without you putting roadblocks in your own way.”
“People like to pretend that America is the Land of the Free, but it’s not. It’s the Land of Weapons is what it is.”
This is a revelation, particularly the track Sintayehu. Wonderful music to end a bewildering year. You can read more at awesometapes.com:
The soulful, smokey reinterpretations of seminal Ethiopian standards, along with two Mergia originals, make a considerable impact on your heart, if only you’re still human in these strange and challenging times.