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Art Quotes on Theory


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44 art quotes about Theory found | Share this page of quotes about Theory on Facebook

Entropy theory is indeed a first attempt to deal with global form; but it has not been dealing with structure. All it says is that a large sum of elements may have properties not found in a smaller sample of them. (Rudolf Arnheim)

Entropy theory, on the other hand, is not concerned with the probability of succession in a series of items but with the overall distribution of kinds of items in a given arrangement. (Rudolf Arnheim)

Good art theory must smell of the studio, although its language should differ from the household talk of painters and sculptors. (Rudolf Arnheim)

Art is like a butterfly fluttering in a meadow. Analysis of art is like a butterfly on a pin. Each has its value, but we must always be aware of the difference, and what is gained or lost. (Darby Bannard)

The secret of theory is that truth does not exist. (Jean Baudrillard)

In theory there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice there is. (Yogi Berra)

We are all agreed that your theory is crazy. The question which divides us is whether it is crazy enough to have a chance of being correct. My own feeling is that it is not crazy enough. (Niels Bohr)

Theories are invigorating and tonic. Give me an ounce of fact and I will produce you a ton of theory by tea this afternoon. That is, after all, my job. (Ray Bradbury)

Theories are patterns without value. What counts is action. (Constantin Brancusi)

Your theory is crazy, but it's not crazy enough to be true. (Bertolt Brecht)

I grow daily to honour facts more and more, and theory less and less. A fact, it seems to me, is a great thing; a sentence printed, if not by God, then at least by the Devil. (Thomas Carlyle)

Generally the theories we believe we call facts, and the facts we disbelieve we call theories. (Felix Cohen)

Painting is first and foremost an activity and not a theory. (Adam Cope)

Theorists seem to quiver over Cezanne's paintings and puff them up to mythological proportions... We ought to look at them without this theoretical baggage and appreciate them for their actual qualities. (Paul deMarrais)

It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories instead of theories to suit facts. (Sir Arthur Conan Doyle)

A theory has only the alternative of being right or wrong. A model has a third possibility: it may be right, but irrelevant. (Manfred Eigen)

A theory is more impressive the greater the simplicity of its premises, the more different kinds of things it relates, and the more extended its area of applicability. (Albert Einstein)

The dominant theory coming out of Hollywood is that peoples' attention spans are getting shorter and shorter and they need more stimulation. (Brian Eno)

All theory, dear friend, is gray, but the golden tree of life springs ever green. (Johann Wolfgang von Goethe)

I love to read theories without ever using them when working... The paradoxical fact in the aesthetic is that theories are also true in reverse. (Ernst Haas)

Theories have four stages of acceptance: i) this is worthless nonsense, ii) this is an interesting, but perverse, point of view, iii) this is true, but quite unimportant, iv) I always said so. (J. B. S. Haldane)

Every theory enables us to husband our strength. It puts in the place of innumerable experiences a general judgement as a symbol and, by offering us a precise, ordered collection of experiences, it saves us a lot of separate observations, descriptions, and controls. (Alfred Hock)

t is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data. Insensibly one begins to twist facts to suit theories, instead of theories to suit facts. (Sherlock Holmes)

The moment a person forms a theory, his imagination sees in every object only the traits which favor that theory. (Thomas Jefferson)

It should not be forgotten that art is not a science where the latest 'correct' theory declares the old to be false and erases it. (Wassily Kandinsky)

Experience without theory is blind, but theory without experience is mere intellectual play. (Immanuel Kant)

The ultimate most holy form of theory is action. (Nikos Kazantzakis)

A professor must have a theory as a dog must have fleas. (H. L. Mencken)

You know it's very hard to maintain a theory in the face of life that comes crashing about you. (Alice Neel)

To understand theory is not enough. Much practice is necessary... (Kimon Nicolaides)

I can't stand theory because it is imposed by the intellectual. And the intellectual is, by definition, not a creative person. The intellectual is a person who talks about the creative process, but often doesn't understand it. (Mary Pratt)

A work of art that contains theories is like an object on which the price tag has been left. (Marcel Proust)

Color theory can change one's direction in painting. (Stephen Quiller)

Theory has nothing to do with a work of art. Pictures which are interpretable, and which contain a meaning, are bad pictures. A picture presents itself as the Unmanageable, the Illogical, the Meaningless. (Gerhard Richter)

However much you are read in theory, if thou hast no practice thou art ignorant. (Sa'di)

It is amazing how much theory we can do without when work actually begins. (Ernst F. Schumacher)

An ounce of reality is heavier than a ton of theory. (Ian Semple)

The theory that music has a depraving effect on morals has now been abandoned to the old women of both sexes. (George Bernard Shaw)

If facts conflict with a theory, either the theory must be changed or the facts. (Baruch Spinoza)

How empty is theory in the presence of fact! (Mark Twain)

The supreme misfortune is when theory outstrips performance. (Leonardo da Vinci)

In art, theories are as useful as a doctor's prescription; one must be sick to believe them. (Maurice de Vlaminck)

Let us work without theorizing, 'tis the only way to make life endurable. (Voltaire)

I am not limiting myself to theories, so I never question the rightness to my approach. (Edward Weston)


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Last modified: April 24, 2014