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Artists, Critics, and Potters

Potters are the nicest people.  We share secret glaze recipes, we do classes workshops to teach other potters how we do what so they can do it too.  We even go to each other's shows and buy each other's work.  I recently read the novel Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides, at one point the main character goes to an art opening expecting to meet artists but instead finds only patrons there.  Potters tend to be both and do attend the openings.

We are also really nice to each other including publicly complementing each other's work and being otherwise very supportive.  However, it seems that not all artists are as nice to each other as potters.  I recently came across a few critical quotes from some of the great masters.  I hope they are largely just being funny.  What do you think?

Frederic Leighton, to James McNeil Whistler: 
"My dear Whistler, you leave your pictures in such a sketchy, unfinished state. Why don't you ever finish them? 

Whistler, to Leighton: 
"My dear Leighton, why do you even begin yours?" 

Salvador Dali, describing Jackson Pollock's paintings: 
"...The indigestion that goes with fish soup." 

Francis Bacon, on Jackson Pollock:
Jackson Pollock's paintings might be very pretty but they are just decoration. I always think they look like old lace. 

Francis Bacon, on Henri Matisse:
I've never liked his things very much, except the very, very early things; I loathe them. I can never see what there is to it, with all those squalid little forms. I can't bear the drawings either, I absolutely hate his line. I find his line sickly.

Andy Warhol, on Jasper Johns:
Oh, I think he's great. He makes such great lunches.

Andy Warhol, on Julian Schnabel: 
I got worried that Julian might have heard what I'd been sayinabout 
him that he goes around to other artists studios to find things to copy.

Willem de Kooning, on Andy Warhol: 
You're a killer of art, you're a killer of beauty, you'reven a killer 
of laughter. I can't bear your work!

Nicolas Poussin, on Caravaggio:
Carvaggio's art is painting for lackeys. This man has come into thworld to destroy painting.

Titian, on Tintoretto:
He will never be anything but a dauber.

Salvador Dali, on Piet Mondrian:
Well, I Salvador, will tell you this, that Piet with one "i" less 
would have been nothing but "pet", which is the French word for fart.

Salvador Dali, on Pablo Picasso:
He finished modern art at one blow by out-uglying, alone, in a single day, the ugly that all others combined turned out in several years.

Alberto Giacometti, on Picasso: 
Picasso is altogether bad, completely beside the point from the beginning except for his Cubist period, and even that half misunderstood. Ugly. Old-fashioned, vulgar, without sensitivity, horrible in color or non-color. 
Very bad painter once and for all.

Marc Chagall, on Picasso:
What a genius, that Picasso. It's a pity he doesn't paint.

William Blake, on Peter Paul Rubens:
To my eye Ruben's coloring is most contemptible. His shadows are of filthy brown somewhat the color of excrement.

Joseph Beuys, on Marcel Duchamp: 
The silence of Marcel Duchamp is overrated. It has become the territory of 
a few intellectuals, far from the life of people.

Frida Kahlo, on the European Surrealists: 
They are so damn intellectual and rotten that I can't stand them anymore; I'd rather sit on the floor in the market of Toluca and sell tortillas, than have anything to do with those artistic bitches of Paris.

Pierre-Auguste Renoir, on Leonardo da Vinci:
He bores me. He ought to have stuck to his flying machines.


Check out the gallery page - Future Relics Gallery by Lori Buff


  1. from my experience most but not all potters or artists are nice in their words or their actions

    1. I've had the same experience Linda, I think these masters were just joking around.

  2. Great timing. A woman I met at a lunch several months ago sent a very nasty, mean, vitriolic note about ME to her friend. Except, she sent it to me by mistake. Not remembering her name I googled her image. Vaguely remember her.

    Pricks my ego, yes. However, the nature of her words reflect everything about her !

    Yes, think what you found was sarcasm !!

    Garden & Be Well, XOT

    1. Ugg, I'm sorry she wrote something ugly and sent it to you (in error or not). I've only known you to be nice, creative, and talented, Tara. However, you are right, most people who say those things are only showing a side of themselves that is not nice.

      Many of these artists hung out together and were friends, I strongly believe that it was just some creative chiding.

  3. yeah, I would say many potters are nice but, well..... :)

    1. It's true, I'm not even sure I've ever met a potter I didn't like.

  4. As the daughter of a newspaper man, I get those.
    Now off to make a great lunch.;)

    1. You might be on to something Meredith, my mother worked for a newspaper for many,many years, I worked for the same newspaper during the summer when I was in college. It does get into your blood a little.

  5. For pure snarkiness there is nothing like one artist criticizing another in his or her field. I think a great deal of it irony and too much wine.

    1. I think you're right, except...can you have too much wine? Hehehe


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