Art Quotes I Like and Why: Picasso Takes an Idea for a Walk

“I begin with an idea … and then it becomes something else.”   Pablo Picasso

I like this quote simply because to know that I have the same mindset as the most influential artist of all time is encouraging.

I was about to write that most artists have this mindset, but then  recalled an artist I knew many years ago telling me that she had an exact picture in her mind of the finished painting before she started to paint. The 20th century English artist Stanley Spencer painted his pictures to a plan, dividing his canvas into a grid and painting each grid in turn.

There are three kinds of writer – the seat of the pants writer (SOTP), the writer who writes to an exact plan and the writer who falls somewhere in the middle (straddler) who might start writing by the seat of his or her pants, then develops a plan later on in the work. 

Which kind of painter was Picasso: SOTP, planner, or straddler? From his statement above, it looks like he was a SOTP painter. It could not be said that Picasso painted to a grid. In his seminal work of 1907/08, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon, the faces of the figures on the right were considerably reworked. Yet, Picasso made many many studies before starting the painting. The studies reveal a good number of influences and not only originating from artistic sources. While Demoiselles is described as proto-cubist, it is also more than that.

“I begin with an idea … and then it becomes something else.”   Pablo Picasso

Nothing comes out of nothing. An initial idea has its history. In the end, I think the something else that the idea becomes, is only one out of many possible roads a work of art can take.




About AnnIsikArts

This entry was posted in Aesthetics, Art, Creativity, Inspiration. Bookmark the permalink.

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