Art Book Quotes

I recently visited my local bookstore and picked up The Story of Art by E.H. Gombrich. I’ve yet to read it, but it did inspire me to search for quotes from famous art books.


“There really is no such thing as Art. There are only artists.” E.H. Gombrich, The Story of Art

“First you do everything possible to make sure your world is antibourgeois, that it defies bourgeois tastes, that it mystifies the mob, the public, that it outdistances the insensible middle-class multitudes by light-years of subtlety and intellect – and then having succeeded admirably, you ask with a sense of See-what-I-mean?” Tom Wolfe, The Painted Word

“The Painted Word hit the art world like a really bad, MSG-headache-producing, Chinese lunch” Rosalind E. Krauss, Partisan Review

“Oil painting, before anything else, was a celebration of private property. As an art-form it derived from the principle that you are what you have.” John Berger, Ways of Seeing

“Art needs motives that are more profound than profit if it is to maintain its difference from – and position above – other cultural forms.” Sarah Thornton, Seven Days in the Art World

“What does one prefer? An art that struggles to change the social contract, but fails? Or one that seeks to please and amuse, and succeeds?” Robert Hughes, The Shock of the New

“No matter what your age or your life path, whether making art is your career or your hobby or your dream, it is not too late or too egotistical or too selfish or too silly to work on your creativity.” Julia Cameron, The Artist’s Way

“Draw the art you want to see, start the business you want to run, play the music you want to hear, write the books you want to read, build the products you want to use – do the work you want to see done.” Austin Kleon, Steal Like an Artist: 10 things Nobody Told You About Being Creative

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