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Inspirational Art Quotes by the famous American artist Jasper Johns
Born Jasper Johns - Augusta, Georgia, USA - 215th of May, 1930 / Lives United States of America
Famous Jasper Johns works include Pop Art inspired paintings of American flags, targets, and other popular iconography.
Jasper Johns Quotes
- "I'm not sure what
'coming out right' means. It often means that what you do holds
a kind of energy that you wouldn't just put there, that comes about
through grace of some sort."
- "Ideas either come
or they don't come."
- "I tend to like
things that already exist."
- "I don't know how
to organise thoughts. I don't know how to have thoughts."
- "I have no ideas
about what the paintings imply about the world. I don't think thats
a painter's business. He just paints paintings without a conscious
reason. I intuitively paint flags."
- "Painting has a
nature which is not entirely translatable into verbal language.
I think painting is a language, actually. Its linguistic in
a sense, but not in a verbal sense. I think that one wants from
painting a sense of life. And I think that is true. One wants to
be able to use all of one's facilities in all aspects of one's life."
- "I don't want my
work to be an exposure of my feelings."
- "Sometimes I see
it and then paint it. Other times I paint it and then see it. Both
are impure situations, and I prefer neither. At every point in nature
there is something to see. My work contains similar possibilities
for the changing focus of the eye."
- "I assumed that
everything would lead to complete failure, but I decided that didn't
matter that would be my life."
- "Old art offers
just as good a criticism of new art as new art offers of old."
- "To be an artist
you have to give up everything, including the desire to be a good
- "I don't see any
point in simply stating something that is easily available. But
then that may just be my own psychology, a kind of negative position.
It seems to me that if you avoid everything you can avoid, then
you do what you can't avoid doing, and you do what is helpless,
and unavoidable. That seems to me more interesting than any other
position at this moment for me anyway."
- "In my early work,
I tried to hide my personality, my psychological state, my emotions.
This was partly due to my feelings about myself and partly due to
my feelings about painting at the time. I sort of stuck to my guns
for a while but eventually it seemed like a losing battle. Finally
one must simply drop the reserve."
- "My primary concern
is visual form. The visual meaning may be discovered afterwards
by those who look for it. Two meanings have been ascribed to these
American Flag paintings of mine. One position is: 'He's painted
a flag so you dont have to think of it as a flag but only
as a painting'. The other is: 'You are enabled by the way he has
painted it to see it as a flag and not as a painting.' Actually
both positions are implicit in the paintings, so you don't have
- "A painting should
contain more experience than simply intended statement."
- "I often find that
having an idea in my head prevents me from doing something else.
Working is therefore a way of getting rid of an idea."
- "It all began with
my painting a picture of an American flag. Using this design took
care of a great deal for me because I didn't have to design it.
So I went on to similar things like the targets things the mind
already knows. That gave me room to work on other levels. For instance,
I've always thought of a painting as a surface; painting it in one
color made this very clear. A picture ought to be looked at the
same way you look at a radiator."
- "I think that one
wants from a painting a sense of life. The final suggestion, the
final statement, has to be not a deliberate statement but a helpless
statement. It has to be what you can't avoid saying."
- "My experience with
life is that it's very fragmented. In one place certain kinds of
thing occur, and in another place a different kind of thing occurs.
I would like my work to have some vivid indication of those differences.
I guess, in painting, it would amount to different kinds of space
being represented in it."