DAY 7 - HOW TO BE AN ARTIST / by Debra Matlock

Lesson 4: Art Is Not About Understanding. Or Mastery.

It is about doing and experience.

No one asks what Mozart means. Or an Indian raga or the little tripping dance of Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers to “Cheek to Cheek” in Top Hat. Forget about making things that are understood. I don’t know what Abba means, but I love it. Imagination is your creed; sentimentality and lack of feeling your foe. All art comes from love — love of doing something.

(From Jerry Saltz’s How to Be an Artist.)

The Uninvited Guest, 2018. Debra Matlock

The Uninvited Guest, 2018. Debra Matlock

Well, people may not ask what Mozart means, but I was asked about this painting multiple times from the same classmate. Every time she would look up, she would “discover” the painting for the first time. “WHAT IS HAPPENING??” And I explained it. Then a little while later, same question. I tried a different answer. Less for her than my other classmates who had to hear the exchange. It actually was pretty enjoyable having to come up with multiple interpretations.