Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The Radiant Redon

Woman Amid Flowers, 1909 - 1910

Closed Eyes, 1890

The Green Death, 1905 - 1910

Inclined Female Head, around 1910

Portrait of Madame Redon with a Yellow Scarf, 1890

Portrait of Marie Botkin, 1900

The Dream, around 1912

The Cyclops, 1898

Eve, 1904

The Japanese Warrior Vase, 1905 - 1908

Some images from the book Odilon Redon by Jean Selz.
Selz writes:
Of all the painters whose secrets are known to us, Odilon was the one who experienced the greatest difficulty - or used the greatest discretion - in explaining his painting. However, he formulated a lucid definition of his art by saying that it consisted of putting "the logic of the visible at the service of the invisible." His work does in fact occupy a place between sight and vision.
How torturous it is to write an artist statement. I'm interested in this comment of Salz's regarding Redon's tremendous difficulty in explaining his own art, because it was an act of great discretion. What do we tell people about our work? Are artist statements even necessary?

3 comments:

Susan Beauchemin said...

Good question! I ALWAYS have difficulty writing up an artist statement--yet, I do like to hear what other artists think about their own paintings--a bit of an explanation to soothe the left side of the brain.

Martha Miller said...

here is a comment that my daughter Kaitlyn posted on my facebook page on the topic of the artist statement:

Wow, so weird that you should post this today. I spent the morning writing a new artist statement. I like how Marian calls them living documents, because they change as we do. I end up writing a new one at least once a year, and usually it's just about life with some small tie in with my work. I feel like I'm thinking on many planes when I write about my work because it's so intertwined and inseparable from the rest of my life.

Martha Miller said...

and this is from Cynthia Simmons, my ex-double cousin in law! (my friend...)

After reading Eckhart Tolle this week, I'm convinced artists should try to leave their egos out of it and concentrate on what makes magic in their work....like what you're doing to become inspired and enthusiastic. The list of what an artist has accomplished is blah blah blah. What brings it all on is fascinating.