Abstract painting seeks to be a pure pictorial language, and thus attempts to escape the essential impurity of all languages: the recourse to signs or forms that have meanings shared by everyone.
Contrary to what many Westerners believe, Islam has a rich tradition of secular painting in spite of its ban on images. It is only in religious rituals that the use of pictorial representation is totally prohibited.
I tell my workshop students, ‘I want you to think of yourselves as artists. Then, when you’re writing, you’re painting, you’re crafting, you’re making a design, you’re sculpting, you’re creating choreography, sound, a sound script.’
I love painting and music, of course. I don’t know nearly as much about them as I know about poetry. I’ve certainly been influenced by fiction. I was overwhelmed by War and Peace when I read it, and I didn’t read it until I was in my late 20s.
When you drive, you are doing several things at once. You are using your eyes, ears, hands, your mind. If you have meditated for many years and have reached a lofty height in your meditation, as I have, you can meditate while running and cycling and painting.
I was influenced by surrealist poetry and painting as were thousands of other people, and it seems to me to have become a part of the way I write, but it’s not.
Ah, lives of men! When prosperous they glitter – Like a fair picture; when misfortune comes – A wet sponge at one blow has blurred the painting.
Futurists wanted to suggest movement by means of a dynamic painting; Duchamp applies the notion of delay – or, rather, or analysis – to movement.
Parks are works of art just as a painting or sculpture is.
Coming to understand a painting or a symphony in an unfamiliar style, to recognize the work of an artist or school, to see or hear in new ways, is as cognitive an achievement as learning to read or write or add.