Herbert Read - Art Quotes
10 Sourced Quotes
An entertainment is something which distracts us or diverts us from the routine of daily life. It makes us for the time being forget our cares and worries; it interrupts our conscious thoughts and habits, rests our nerves and minds, though it may incidentally exhaust our bodies. Art, on the other hand, though it may divert us from the normal routine of our existence, causes us in some way or other to become conscious of that existence.
Intellect begins with the observation of nature, proceeds to memorize and classify the facts thus observed, and by logical deduction builds up that edifice of knowledge properly called science But admittedly we also know by feeling, and we can combine the two faculties, and present knowledge in the guise of art.
An enormous amount of art and literature is erotic in the sense that it stimulates vague sexual emotions, but it has no pornographic intention or effect because "it leaves everything to the imagination." The consumer has to invent his own images, and it is felt, I do not know with what justification, that there is no harm in this.
Art is not and never has been subordinate to moral values. Moral values are social values; aesthetic values are human values. Morality seeks to restrain the feelings; art seeks to define them by externalizing them, by giving them significant form. Morality has only one aim - the ideal good; art has quite another aim - the objective truth... art never changes.