Highlights – 11/27/2012

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November 28, 2012 by Daniel

In the midst of final essays and whatnot, I totally forgot to do a Highlights yesterday.  No other excuse, really: had ’em all written out, really just needed to copy and paste them to a new post, and just forgot.  So…er….sorry ’bout that.  Here they are, anyways.  Almost all of ’em are from Alec, specifically “How to Be an Artist”.

“Maureen hated the flies – to the point that if there was only one fly in the room she would know exactly where it was, how it get there, and why it must be destroyed.  She and Ringo had consulted the Maharishi on the subject, but the Maharishi told them that for people travelling in the realm of pure consciousness, flies no longer matter very much. “Yes,” Ringo said, “but that doesn’t zap the flies, does it?” (Paul Saltzman, The Beatles in Rishikesh)

“How to Successfully be an Artist (not to be confused with “becoming a successful artist”).  First, you must make your bargain with Fate.  Then you must get the most dead-end job you can find, one that does not require intelligence, because you will need to display that elsewhere.  You must put yourself through the informal course of learning everything there is to learn.  This is not to be confused with learning everything you need to know.  You could easily go to college for that.  This will take the rest of eternity.  So the sooner you start out, the sooner you’ll come home, as the mother said to the son going to war.” (Eddie Campbell, Alec: How to be an Artist)

“A person, an artist, sees or hears a thing in his or her brain and strives to make it exist outside of there.  Simple.  But how did it get in there and arrange itself just so, the stuff in his or her noggin, presuming it wasn’t lifted wholesale from somebody else like with that writer who had to give her prize back.”

 “Can you be an artist not connected with any ‘Art World’?  Can you be one if nobody ever knows it?”

“You know, one of the things America has given the world along with the endless coffee refill, is a colourful bunch of expressions for doing nothing.”

 “The difference between the guy who’s on the right track and the one who isn’t, is that the latter will begrudge a person their success, while the former will be quietly reassured in knowing that success is not such a faraway land.”

“In Science and Philosophy, successive workers in the same field produce, if they work ordinarily well, an advance; and a retrograde movement always implies some breach of continuity.  But in Art, a school once established normally deteriorates as it goes on.  It achieves perfection in its kind with a startling burst of energy, a gesture too quick for the historian’s eye to follow.  He can never explain such a movement or tell us exactly how it happened.  But once achieved, there is the melancholy certainty of decline….whether in large or little, the equilibrium of aesthetic life is permanently unstable” (R.G. Collingwood, Speculum Mentis or, The Map of Knowledge, though quoted in How to be An Artist)

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