Thursday, June 20, 2019

Thursday Thoughts...

“I have only one worry in the world. It is that my paintings will show downtown and fail there. They will fail because they are non-aggressive – they are not even outgoing”. 

Agnes Martin

Despite feeling sad and concerned for Agnes Martin's anxiety and worry; I do like how she thinks about her work - it isn't aggressive, and its not even outgoing!

Feels a lot like me and mine. NOT that I am equating my work with hers; just that mine isn't really outgoing either.

Agnes Martin's work was so, so quiet. It whispered, went inwards and cocooned itself, waiting.

It made me a bit sad as I read her words that she felt that only loud, outgoing, aggressive work would sell downtown.  That the art world valued that kind of painting over her kind of painting.  Whereas I think her work is sublime and beautiful.

I imagine that most of us at some point in time worry that our work isn't good enough; that it won't hold up.  Some us will always feel that our work just doesn't fit.  That our way is not the way that seems to be deemed worthy; yet we know we can only do our own work no one else's...

Agnes Martin 1912–2004 

Paintings and Drawings: Stedelijk Museum Portfolio (ten works)

lithograph on vellum transparency paper
11¾ h × 11¾ w in
30 × 30 cm



  1. This gentle post has encouraged me to learn more about Agnes Martin than I already know ... and to find a way to see her work in person some day ...

    1. Isn't it the most restful work Liz? It just fills me with calm as I gaze at. Wouldn't it be wonderful to see it somewhere one day - I hope that you do!

  2. (((Fiona))) every artist and musician I know gets nervous setting the work free, as Don de Lillo said in Great Jones St (1973) "You have to be naked at the moment of delivery"

    1. Its nice to know its a shared experience isn't it Mo? Even the great ones...
      and I also wish that the world was more open to, and supportive of, the quiet work...fingers crossed!

  3. F - I think some of the quietest works can get the message across and be loved if-when they invite folk in - use quietness to make points about hard matters. Looks like beautiful quiet work. B

    1. Thanks B! Her work is divinely simple and peaceful I think; and it certainly invites me in...


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