Archive for the ART QUOTES Category

Picture this Poetry Challenge: Haiku ‘The Bedroom at Arles’ Vincent Van Gogh

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART QUOTES, haiku, Picture this Haiku Poetry Challenge, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on May 25, 2020 by echostains

Vincent Van Gogh painted three versions of this painting ‘The Bedroom at Arles’.  This is the third  version he painted in 1889.  He painted it whilst waiting for his mother to visit him in a Lunatic Asylum in  St Remy.  He was to commit suicide 10 months after this painting.  He called his chair ‘The Seat of happiness because the  colours symbolise sunshine, warmth and happiness.

the bedroom

” When I see my canvasses again, after my illness, The one that seemed the best was ‘The Bedroom’


The idea is to write a haiku about the painting and link to Echostains and Bookstains and  it shall appear here.  Here’s  mine;

Yellow sunlit chair

light up my starry night of rest

your colours soothe me.

L M Roberts 2020

Image from here


The art of Confession. Read all about it – Exclusive! Did you make the bed?

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART QUOTES, HISTORY with tags , , , on September 28, 2012 by echostains

We live in the times of the Confessional.  Privacy is not exclusive.  Well it sort of IS actually…. You can read these ‘exclusive’ stories every day in the newspapers.  It’s amazing how quickly privacy flies out of the window when the price is right…

The act of confessing is supposed to be between God and the confessor (using the Priest as a mediator or a conduit).  It seems that the act of confessing all has now become an art form, Tracey Emin is a living ambassador of confessional art, (sometimes known as autobiographical).  In order for the confession to be of any interest to the average audience though, it has to have a shock factor, an air of secrecy and exclusivity, and that is where it falls down (when it loses its exclusivity, where it’s shared among the media and therefore becomes common knowledge.  That doesn’t stop people being interested in others dirty washing however!

Fly on the wall documentaries, and ‘reality’programmes like Big BrotherThe Osbournes   andI’m a Celebrity – get me out of here! now provide popular entertainment .  The confessional aspect of these shows requires starstruck voyeurs to really work. – and we have become a nation of voyeurs (or ‘observers’, as we like to call ourselves).  The Jeremy Kyle Show has even won an award for this abrasive style of interogation (though not much arm twisting is involved to get guests to ‘spill the beans’ or air their dirty washing)  A strange camera technique is used to throw the participant’s face into hideous relief showing up each blemish, wrinkle etc.  the victim is then shouted at , told to ‘grow a pair’ and sent off to a ‘good cop’ (Kyle is ‘Bad cop’) for ‘after care’

Perhaps these shows make us feel better about ourselves or maybe some of the issues they deal with (well, touch upon) actually do affect us, or we have experience of them?  There’s also the added bonus whilst watching these types of shows of the realisation that things could be a lot worse in our own world. I must add though that the reverse is true for me when I watch The Antiques Road Show and see all the personal stuff people have been left and are willing to part for a few quid.  Having never been left anything – and having no rich relatives so never likely to be left anything,  I do confess to a feeling of envy. ūüė¶

The act of confessing is said to  have a cathartic effect: though sometimes the opposite can occur. The opening up of old wounds, the telling of secrets: especially when these ‘secrets’ hurt or effect others lives.

Many agree that the original founder of Confessional art is the French  American artist and sculptor Louise Bourgeois (b 1911 – 2010) . In this interview   (celebrating her 70th birthday and her Retrospective) she revealed  that  her sculptures are mostly self confessional, and that the materials used are personal and symbolic to her and represent parts of her personal life that she felt she needed to ‘explain’ or come to terms with.  There’s a great article about this here

Here’s some quotes by the great sculptress;-

I‚Äôm neither a preacher nor a teacher.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúIf the artwork is true, then it will communicate and have value to others.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúTrust yourself. In your art you must tell your own story and if you tell your own story, you will be interesting.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúMy art is a form of psychoanalysis. I was able to exorcise my demons through art.‚ÄĚ

Artist Tracey Emin’s  is  a story-teller.  Her art  is a dichotomy.  On the one hand, it is very self absorbed – all about herself and her experiences – yet it reaches out through its narrative and we become absorbed in it through the artist’s way of communication, which is very powerful.

Roberta Smith of The New Yorker says the following about Tracey’s work:

‚ÄúIf Tracey Emin could sing, she might be Judy Garland, a bundle of irresistible, pathetic, ferocious, self-indulgent, brilliant energy. Since she can’t, or doesn’t, she writes, incorporating autobiographical texts and statements into drawings, monoprints, watercolors, collages, quilts, neon sculptures, installations and videotapes. In her art she tells all, all the truths, both awful and wonderful, but mostly awful, about her life. Physical and psychic pain in the form of rejection, incest, rape, abortion and sex with strangers figure in this tale, as do love, passion and joy.‚ÄĚ

The art of the confessional is here to stay – both in the art world and the media.  People will always want to read all about it in Heat magazine or biographys.  Anyone can do it – just make sure you get your story straight……. and don’t tell everything….. leave that for your next book.

Confessional box image from here

Town crier image – here

Louise Bourgeois  images from here and here

Bourgeois quotes from here and here

Roberta Smith interview quote from here

Jeremy Kyle image here

Emin tent image from here Neon sign image here


Happy birthday Pablo Picasso

PS  There’s a brand new post over on my other blog BOOKSTAINS

Happy Birthday L S  Lowry! (1st November 1887)  I shall be writing a post about him

Poll Truth or Fiction?

Posted in ART, ART QUOTES with tags , , , , , on June 17, 2011 by echostains

Which of these art quotes speak truthfully to you and which do you disagree with?¬† Just vote for your favorite and why you disagree with any.¬† Truth or fiction?¬† It’s all subjective.¬†

I agree with Da Vinci who illustrates the difference between poetry and art so succinctly.  

Painting is poetry that is seen rather than felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen.  ~Leonardo da Vinci

But as¬†usual, Picasso has a rather dramatic yet persuasive way with words (but I can’t disagree with him)

We all know that Art is not truth.  Art is a lie that makes us realize truth, at least the truth that is given us to understand.  The artist must know the manner whereby to convince others of the truthfulness of his lies.  ~Pablo Picasso. 

 I can see where Mattise is coming from Рbut he makes it sound so boring:-

I don’t paint things.¬† I only paint the difference between things.¬† ~Henri Matisse

  I also agree with Degas too.  I have seen a lot of very delightful art made by untrained children and sometimes breaking the rules can free your art. 

Painting is easy when you don’t know how, but very difficult when you do.¬† ~Edgar Degas

Rouault’s strangled laugh sounds quite terrifying, a kind of torturous escapism ¬†(and one I haven’t experienced…yet) so I would have to disagree with him:-

For me, painting is a way to forget life.  It is a cry in the night, a strangled laugh.  ~Georges Rouault

I have to agree with Claes¬†Oldenburg to an extent, I do like art to do something rather than¬†sit in a museum –¬†but I do like to know where it is for when I want to visit it ūüôā

I am for an art that is political-erotical-mystical, that does something other than sit on its ass in a museum.  ~Claes Oldenburg

So, to sum up ¬†Leonardo Da Vinci gets my ‘truth’ vote and poor old Rouault gets my disagreement vote ūüėȬ†

Art quotes are from The Quote garden

The puzzle image comes from here



‚ÄėPoll ‚Äď Never a Truer word was said..‚Äô

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART QUOTES, POEM CHALLENGES, POETRY, POLLS with tags , , , , on October 10, 2010 by echostains

There are lots¬†of wonderful art quotes around.¬† Some artists are more eloquent¬†and verbose or wittier¬†than others – Picasso, for example¬†could fill a book with his quotes (but more on this¬†artist coming soon….).¬†


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¬†Without letting the art work influence you, I would like you to pick your favorite ‘truth’ from these 6 quotes.¬† Although all true, the one that I like the most has to be Camille Pissarro as this shows the artist’s eye to see beauty in everyday things and elevates them from the mundane into the profound.

ÔĽŅBut, then again – who could disagree with Chagall‘s reasoning about art picking up where nature ends – like it’s a natural progression?

I also like the idea of Matisse painting the ‘difference’ between things rather than the object.¬† It is this difference which makes great art.

¬†I cannot argue with a Leonardo Da Vinci quote (which isnt in the poll)¬†when he’s¬†says that painting is poetry that is seen¬†rather than¬†felt – and poetry is felt rather than seen.¬† See for yourself by pressing Mona Lisa, reading the poems dedicated to her – and maybe take part yourself:)

PS  Another has been added today!



Quotes from Here and Here.

Pissarro image here Chagall image here Dali image here  Matisse image from here
Blake image here


From the mouths of artists

Posted in ART, ART QUOTES with tags , , , on August 9, 2010 by echostains

Les Demoiselles d'Avignon

There have been many great quotes about art and painting.   Sometimes it seems that if you are a great artist it automatically follows that you will utter a clever quote which will be taken down avidly by critics and fans and passed on.  Picasso was aways coming out with profound quotes, they just seemed to trip off his tongue:-

Painting is just another way of keeping a diary”

As a prolific painter, this was probably true.  There is something about being absorbed in a project that keeps the memento up as each experiment leads to a new discovery and the original concept (used as a starting point) starts to take on a completely different personality of its own.  It is the journey which is important to me personally.  A printed out bus ticket (the end product) needs the map to go with it to trace where the journey begins Рand how it ends.

Mona Lisa

“Painting is poetry that is seen¬†rather than¬†felt, and poetry is painting that is felt rather than seen”

Leonardo da Vinci puts this so succinctly.¬† He was both profound and clever (though the two don’t necessarily always go hand in hand).¬†¬†I like the way he juxtaposes poetry with painting, making each lyrical.¬† Poetry does indeed paint a picture with words in our minds and vice versa.

Great art picks up where nature ends”This quote is by Marc Chagall.¬† What does he mean by it though?¬† That art is beyond nature? above nature? unnatural?¬† or is he trying to say that art transcends¬†nature – that we leave our natures and soar above ourselves like his famous flight paintings!

Chagall image from here Picasso image here and Leonardo Da Vinci here

Quotes from here

Chagall 'flight'



Plus……… over on Book stains….

My 483rd post is here


where my heads at

Looking back through my past posts, I realised that I haven’t done any summing up since my 427 post.¬† I like to do this so often as it gives me new ideas and alerts me to areas of the blog which I have either abandoned or neglected.¬† Some of the categories are outdated now, but I’m still going to keep them, maybe put them under a big generic umbrella – like all the holiday ones in ‘Places’.

gormenghast trilogy

Since my last summing up, there have been a few changes.¬† For example my other blog ‘Bookstains’ where I am putting my book¬† reviews (though I’ve not done much of that for quite a bit).¬† Reading challenges also go on Bookstains.¬† I have finished both ‘Titus Groan’ and Gormenghast now and am miles behind writing about Titus and my impressions.¬† I started that blog because of that, but I am enjoying myself writing poetry too much….

I'm no Byron

Having¬†resurrected¬†my interest in poetry, I have now¬†written a few ¬†in different styles and also a bit of Haiku – which I’ve never done before.¬† The poetry is also on Bookstains’.¬†

the ones which went before

Another category which I have started is about the preservation of the dead.¬† Strange, you may think but I am fascinated¬†by all the different ways the body can be preserved and usually by nature.¬† I am very interested in geneology and have found out so much about myself from looking at my past.¬† I am the sum total of those who have gone before.¬† Art quote is another new category and does what it says on the tin.¬†¬† I’m trying to pick artists who have made a lot of quotes and who I haven’t featured in ‘birthdays’ or ‘Art I LOVE’.

Behind the paint

A very recent category is called ‘Behind the paint’ and takes a famous painting and looks at the ‘clues’ to understanding it.¬† Teapots still interest me, but unusual ones are getting harder and harder to find.¬† The weird and Wacky design’ section is quite a popular one.¬† I like to put the objects into groups so there is at least a cohesive theme running through them.¬† This takes a bit of time…..

Branwell Brontes Barbers Tale by Chris Firth

Bronte Bites is a section that hasn’t seen much action recently.¬† I do have new photos which I took earlier this month and which I will get round to putting up on here soon.¬† I’m still having trouble with the formatting, but I can’t see me changing the theme as I think it suits my subject matter.¬† Oh well, onwards and upwards, as they say.

Art Quotes – Monet – into the light

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART QUOTES, HISTORY with tags , , , , on March 22, 2010 by echostains
What an amazing artist French Impressionist Claude Monet was (b. 1840-1826 France).  He was obsessed with colour and light.  He lived and breathed it, as these quotes show.  Monet painted light and its effect.  He was particularly interested in how it transformed the landscape and also its reflective quality upon water.


The very term ‘impressionism’ comes from one the artist’s paintings ‘Impression, Sunrise’.¬† He lived in London in 1870¬† for a year and studied Constable and Turner.¬† He painted his famous painting ‘Impression, Sunrise’ in 1872.¬† In 1879 he became a widower.¬† He painted his wife on her deathbed and observed:-¬†

‚ÄúColor is my day-long obsession, joy and torment. To such an extent indeed that one day, finding myself at the deathbed of a woman who had been and still was very dear to me, I caught myself in the act of focusing on her temples and automatically analyzing the succession of appropriately graded colors which death was imposing on her motionless face.‚Ä̬†¬†


Camille on her deathbed

Monet believed that to understand something,  one had to observe it day after day.  That understanding something sometimes requires practise.  He was relentless in his pursuit. 

I know that to paint the sea really well, you need to look at it every hour of every day in the same place so that you can understand its way in that particular spot and that is why I am working on the same motifs over and over again, four or six times even.  


We’re having marvelous weather and I wish I could send you a little of the sunshine. I am slaving away on six paintings a day. I’m giving myself a hard time over it as I haven’t yet managed to capture the color of this landscape, there are moments when I’m appalled at the colors I’m having to use, I’m afraid what I’m doing is just dreadful and yet I really am understating it; the light is simply terrifying.”¬†



those lillies

The artist famous for his waterlilies and his garden at Giverny is credited with lots of quotes that contain references to nature and in particular gardening – for example ‘digging and delving’:-¬†¬†

It’s on the strength of observation and reflection that one finds a way. So we must dig and delve unceasingly.”¬†¬†¬†¬†

I like the way Monet humbles himself before nature.¬† He never thinks that he has conquered painting nature and the way the light affects it.¬† He always feels he owes a debt to nature – but it’s probably the other way around, judging by this beautiful paint



yellow iris’

“I love you because you are you, and¬†because you taught me how to understand light. Thus you increased me. I regret I cannot give it back to you. Paint, paint ever and ever untill the canvas wears out. My eyes need your color and my heart is happy about you.”¬†¬†


houses of parliment effect of sunlight in the fog

 In 1923 he had two operations on his cataracts, this may have altered his colour vision.   His colours before the operation have a reddish tone, sometimes indicative of cataracts.

 My garden is my most beautiful masterpiece.
Everything I have earned has gone into these gardens. 

 He loved Giverny, which is on the right bank of the river Seine and especially his gardens of which he was the architect  and so able  to dictate his own controlled environment.   


I am following Nature without being able to grasp her…I perhaps owe having become a painter to flowers.‚Ä̬†¬†

He died aged  in 1826 at the ripe old age of 86.  He had lung cancer.  This quote is so poignant and ironic that such a man who loved nature and was drawn by the light he painted should very nearly go blind.  We still have his vision though and through his paintings, the ability to see what he saw.  A true legacy. 

“I’m working very hard and I would like to paint everything before I cannot see anymore.”¬†

More Monet quotes here 

and here 

Bridge painting here

Monet Lily image here 

More images here 

Lots of images and quotes here

Art Quotes Vlaminck Colour loaded

Posted in ART, ART HISTORY, ART QUOTES with tags , , , , on March 16, 2010 by echostains


The river Seine at Chatou by Vlaminck


In an effort to get more art into my blog, I have come up with the idea of these ‘art quotes’.¬† I don’t know where they will lead (probably all over the place)¬†hopefully the quotes will lead into other aspects – not just art.¬†¬† As with¬†any new category you have to have a starting point – so here’s my first quote:-

I  had no wish for a change of scene. All these places that I knew so well, the Seine with its strings of barges, the tugs with their plumes of smoke, the taverns in the suburbs, the colors of the atmosphere, the sky with its great clouds and its patches of sun, these were what I wanted to paint.  Maurice de Vlaminck


Maurice de Vlaminck was a giant of man, an athelete,¬†anarchist and novelist.¬† He was a self taught artist unlike Mattisse and Andre Derain.¬† These French artists along with¬† Rouault, Friesz, Marquet, van Dongen, Braque, and Dufy made up the art movement know as Fauvism (or the Wild beasts).¬† It was¬† short lived movement (1900 -1910: the important years where it flourished were between 1905 1907/8).¬†¬†With its expressionist style and use of ¬†bold exuberant colour, the Fauvist’s¬†work was¬†recognised ¬†for it’s painterly brushstrokes and strong colours rather than pure¬†representaional qualities.

Restaurant at Marly-le-Roi by Maurice de Vlaminck

“I was poor but I knew that life is beautiful. And I had no other ambition than to discover with the help of new means those deep inner ties that linked me to the very soil.”¬† Maurice de Vlanminck

I like the way Vlaminck has linked  his inner being to the soil Рusing art as an vehicle for expression.  Like Van Gogh, who first influenced him, he painted familiar landscapes and people in unfamiliar ways. Vlaminck was a vibrant character with a mind of his own.   He would use paint agressively straight from the tube and onto the canvas.  He was larger than life, raced cars, played violins and  wished the Van Gogh had been his father!

Le Jardinier 1904 Vlaminck

I heightened all tones. I transposed into an orchestration of pure colors all the feelings of which I was conscious. I was a barbarian, tender and full of violence. I translated by instinct, without any method, not merely an artistic truth but above all a human one. I crushed and botched the ultramarines and vermilions though they were very expensive and I had to buy them on credit.  Maurice Vlaminck

Maurice Vlaminck ‚Äď Picking Up Deadwood (1906)

I can imagine Vlaminck squeezing the paint tubes through his fingers, ‘crushing and botching them’ regardless of the expense.¬†He is caught up in the moment and excited by his experiment – the pure colour¬†stimulating his senses.¬† It is a wonderful feeling to be inspired by sheer colour and one that I can identify, having gone through different colour preferences myself (I’m in a turquise/aqua marine phase at the moment).¬† It is said that colours have healing properties in them, and that the ¬†colour that you are attracted to is the colour you need to heal you.¬† Colour is all through our lives, from the nursery to the funeral.¬† Colour is linked both with the aura and even in the gemstones which we choose.


Quotes website here

and here

Colour therapy