Alec Nevala-Lee

Thoughts on art, creativity, and the writing life.

Archive for May 1st, 2016

The yeast and the leaven

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The Cyclops by Odilon Redon

Everything derives from universal life; a painter who neglects to draw a wall vertically draws poorly because he diverts the spirit from the idea of stability. The same is true of the painter who fails to render his water with consideration for the horizontal…

The method that has been the most fruitful and the most necessary to my development is the copying of real things, carefully reproducing the objects of the exterior world in their most minute, individual, and accidental details. After attempting to copy minutely a pebble, a sprout of a plant, a hand, a human profile, or any other example of living or inorganic life, I experience the onset of a mental excitement; at that point I need to create, to give myself over to representations of the imaginary. Thus blended and infused, nature becomes my source, my yeast and my leaven. I believe that this is the origin of my true inventions.

Odilon Redon, quoted in Theories of Modern Art

Written by nevalalee

May 1, 2016 at 7:30 am

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