Mark Rothko

Mark Rothko

Style: Abstract Expressionism

Lived: September 25, 1903 - February 25, 1970 (20th century)

Nationality: Russia

It is a widely accepted notion among painters that it does not matter what one paints as long as it is well painted. This is the essence of academicism. There is no such thing as good painting about nothing.

It is our function as artists to make the spectator see the world our way � not his way.

It was with the utmost reluctance that I found the figure could not serve my purposes. But a time came when none of us could use the figure without mutilating it.

The fact that people break down and cry when confronted with my pictures shows that I can communicate those basic human emotions.. the people who weep before my pictures are having the same religious experience I had when painting them. And if you say you are moved only by their color relationships then you miss the point.

This world of the imagination is fancy-free and violently opposed to common sense.

I'm not an abstractionist. I'm not interested in the relationship of color or form or anything else. I�m interested only in expressing basic human emotions: tragedy, ecstasy, doom, and so on.

If you... are moved only by the color relationships, then you miss the point.

Look, it's my misery that I have to paint this kind of painting, it's your misery that you have to love it, and the price of the misery is thirteen hundred and fifty dollars.

Since my pictures are large, colorful and unframed, and since museum walls are usually immense and formidable, there is the danger that the pictures relate themselves as decorative areas to the walls. This would be a distortion of their meaning, since the pictures are intimate and intense, and are the opposite of what is decorative.

Pictures must be miraculous: the instant one is completed, the intimacy between the creation and the creator is ended.

I don't express myself in my paintings. I express my not-self.

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