Jean Arp Quotes
10 Sourced Quotes
Sculpture should walk on the tips of its toes, unostentatious, unpretentious, and light as the spoor of an animal in snow. Art should melt into and even merge with nature itself. This is obviously contrary to painting and sculpture based on nature. By so doing, art will rid itself more and more of self-centredness, virtuosity and absurdity.
Ever since my childhood, I was haunted by the search for perfection. An imperfectly cut paper literally made me ill, I would guillotine it. My collages came undone, they became blistered. I then introduced death and decay in my compositions. I reacted by avoiding any precision from one day to another. Instead of cutting the paper, I would tear it with my hands.
I allow myself to be guided by the work which is in the process of being born, I have confidence in it (automatic painting). I do not think about it. The forms arrive pleasant, or strange, hostile, inexplicable, mute, or drowsy. They are born from themselves. It seems to me as if all I do is move my hands.
I like nature but not its substitutes. Naturalist art, illusionism, is a substitute for nature. I remember that in arguing with Piet Mondrian (in Paris 1920's), he opposed art to nature saying that art is artificial and nature is natural. I do not share this opinion. I do not think that nature is in natural opposition to art. Art's origins are natural.