The only way an artist can communicate with the world at large is on the level of feeling.
You keep on balancing and balancing and balancing until the picture wins, because then the subject's turned into the picture.
When I finish a painting, it usually looks as surprising to me as to anyone else.
I want my pictures to be things. I want them to be made up of marks that are physically and individually self-sufficient.
I think words come between the spectator and the picture.
Passion lies between one mark and the next, and also within all of them.
I dont think you can lightly paint a picture. Its an activity I take very seriously.
I am isolated as an artist, not as a person.
A painting is finished when the subject comes back, when what has caused the painting to be made comes back as an object.
Collecting has been my great extravagance. It's a way of being. I collect for the same reason that I eat too much-I'm one of nature's shoppers.
I look at my pictures, and I think, 'Well, how did I do that?
My friends tend to be writers. I think writers and painters are really all the same-we just sit in our rooms.
A lot of people... are afraid of pictures which have visible emotions in them. They feel calmer in front of pictures which are placid.
I never think that anything I do is courageous.
In England, it's thought to be morally suspect to worry about what your surroundings look like.
I'm very envious of the few artists who are any good and still do portraits.
I think that words are often extraneous to what I do.
I don't really have a historical overview of my work at all. I'm not an art historian. I don't see that there's this period and that period.
I'm vulnerable to criticism. Any artist is, because you work alone in your studio and, until recently, critics were the only way you'd get any feedback.
My language is what I use, and if I lost that, I wouldnt be able to say anything.
I am happy for people to talk about my pictures, but I wish devoutly that I was not expected to talk about them myself.
It takes a long time for the gleam in the eye to turn into something solid.
To be a painter now is to be part of a very small, endangered species.
My pictures really finish themselves.
Eventually, a collection ceases to be a personal indulgence and assumes its own identity. In fact, it becomes a thing in its own right - rather like Frankenstein's monster.
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