+ You see,
painting has now become, or all art has now become completely a game, by which
man distracts himself. What is fascinating actually is, that it's going to become
much more difficult for the artist, because he must really deepen the game to
become any good at all.
+ An illustrational form tells you through the
intelligence immediately what the form is about, whereas a non-illustrational
form works first upon sensation and then slowly leaks back into the fact.
+ The job of the artist is always to deepen the mystery.
+ I dont
think people are born artists; I think it comes from a mixture of your surroundings,
the people you meet, and luck.
+ I paint for myself. I dont know
how to do anything else, anyway. Also I have to earn my living, and occupy myself.
+ I need the city; I need to know there are people around me strolling, arguing,
f**kingliving, and yet I go out very rarely; I stay here in my cage.
+ I should have been, I dont know, a con-man, a robber or a prostitute.
But it was vanity that made me choose painting, vanity and chance.
All artists are vain, they long to be recognised and to leave something to posterity.
They want to be loved, and at the same time they want to be free. But nobody is
+ Some artists leave remarkable things which, a 100 years later,
dont work at all. I have left my mark; my work is hung in museums, but maybe
one day the Tate Gallery or the other museums will banish me to the cellar
+ Painting gave meaning to my life which without it it would
not have had.
+ Picasso is the reason why I paint. He is the father figure,
who gave me the wish to paint.
+ Picasso was the first person to produce
figurative paintings which overturned the rules of appearance; he suggested appearance
without using the usual codes, without respecting the representational truth of
form, but using a breath of irrationality instead, to make representation stronger
and more direct; so that form could pass directly from the eye to the stomach
without going through the brain.
+ Picasso was one of that genius caste
which includes Rembrandt, Michelangelo, Van Gogh and above all Velázquez.
+ Velázquez found the perfect balance between the ideal illustration
which he was required to produce, and the overwhelming emotion he aroused in the
+ Images also help me find and realise ideas. I look at hundreds
of very different, contrasting images and I pinch details from them, rather like
people who eat from other peoples plates.
+ Before I start painting
I have a slightly ambiguous feeling: happiness is a special excitement because
unhappiness is always possible a moment later.
+ You could say that I
have no inspiration, that I only need to paint.
+ The creative process
is a cocktail of instinct, skill, culture and a highly creative feverishness.
It is not like a drug; it is a particular state when everything happens very quickly,
a mixture of consciousness and unconsciousness, of fear and pleasure; its
a little like making love, the physical act of love.