[Table of Contents] [Search]

[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

Re: Focus, Need, and expression

I think that was very well put and has validity (probably, truth be told, for a heck of
a lot of people who "do art").  I identify a lot with what you are saying.  There are
people, though, who do need "to express", or who "express" because it simply happens.
Is this what happens with poets?  Is it different with the book arts?   Is the desire
to express some idea necessary for it to actually be there?

There was a lot of conscious planning and connecting going on in Richard's books.  Was
it necessary?  Probably so for him.  I'd still like to see them for myself, but that's
not likely to happen.  I don't make Artist's Books, but friends who do generally go
through a lot of preliminary thinking.  When I prepare a tapestry cartoon, there is
aways much preliminary work, most of it design.

Carol P
Eugene, OR

Michael Brady wrote:

> Carol,
> >   Sure, but we're talking about expression here, not science and not the practice
> >   of some daily effort such as cooking (though most of us would agree that there
> >   are some who are just cooks there are others (a few, perhaps, who can really
> >   cook).  And I would not include vacuuming or computer programming in this topic.
> >   There may be a lot of what we facetiously call "zen" in vacuuming, it isn't
> >   particularly artistic.
> I meant that some folks find their satisfaction in doing these things. Just last
> evening, a friend said in a social conversation that he didn't have any artistic or
> creative or expressive gene. Of course, art isn't genetic and he was speaking very
> casually.
> For me as an artist and graphic designer, painting or doing layouts is so very
> satisfying. The satisfication comes from manually manipulating the materials, the
> smell of the linseed oil or printing inks, the weight and heft of the books, the
> drag of the brush across the canvas. As well as the way the line makes an edge or
> how one color affects another or whether Univers or Helvetica is the right face for
> the job. I rarely think of "expressing" anything.
> I am confident after three decades of doing this stuff that what I do make is unique
> to me, presents certain subjects in a distinctive style and with a distinctive "end"
> or "purpose" in view.
> I guess it's that I don't feel the drive to get something inside me out
> ("expressionism") but rather the unavoidable allure of putting the materials to use
> for something (the painting, the book, etc.). In fact, for most of my paintings, I
> just go to one of my sketchbooks, find a drawing, duplicate it on canvas, and start
> painting. Eventually, I am finished. The desire to satisfy myself through painting
> is far more powerful than the tranistory seduction of showing someone something I
> know or have discovered.

            BOOK_ARTS-L: The listserv for all the book arts.
      For subscription information, the Archive, and other related
            resources and links go to the Book_Arts-L FAQ at:

[Subject index] [Index for current month] [Table of Contents] [Search]