Andrew Marzoni

Added on by Andrew Marzoni.

"Artists are nourished by each other more than by fame or by the public, I’ve always thought. To give one’s work to the world is an experience of peculiar emptiness. The work goes away from the artist into a void, like a message stuck into a bottle and flung into the sea. Criticism is crushing and humiliating. Pollock was hailed as a genius by the time he died, but could he have forgotten the widely repeated witticism that his paintings could have been done by a chimpanzee? As for praise, somehow it falls short, empty superlatives. The true artist knows the pitfalls of vanity. Dangerous to let go of one’s anxiety. But did you understand? must always be the question. To like and admire is not enough: did you understand? And will you understand the next thing I do—the wet canvas in my studio, the page I left in my typewriter? Unreasonably, the artist would like to know this, too. Praise has to do with the past, the finished thing; the unfinished is the artist’s preoccupation.”

—Joyce Johnson, Minor Characters (1983)