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«Knowledge Art Quotes

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Language Art Quotes

144 art quotes about Language | Share this page of quotes about Language on Facebook | Submit more Language art quotes

We like to assume that language is a purely human property, our exclusive possession, and that everything else is basically mute. (David Abram)

History does not merely touch on language, but takes place in it. (Theodor W. Adorno)

True art selects and paraphrases, but seldom gives a verbatim translation. (Thomas Bailey Aldrich)

I don't mind what language an opera is sung in so long as it is a language I don't understand. (Edward Victor Appleton)

A special kind of beauty exists which is born in language, of language, and for language. (Gaston Bachelard)

Painting is a language which cannot be replaced by another language. I don't know what to say about what I paint, really. (Balthus)

Good art has everything you need to know about it in the work, not on a wall label. Art is here to take us beyond language. (Darby Bannard)

To handle a language skillfully is to practice a kind of evocative sorcery. (Charles Baudelaire)

Never resist a sentence you like, in which language takes its own pleasure and in which, after having abused it for so long, you are stupefied by its innocence. (Jean Baudrillard)

We have a language that reflects how we learn to paint, but not how we learn to paint our paintings. How do you describe the (reader to place words here) that changes when craft swells to art? (David Bayles)

Drawing on my fine command of language, I said nothing. (Robert Benchley)

One can say of language that it is potentially the only human home, the only dwelling place that cannot be hostile to man. (John Berger)

The constructions of language, which is to say the constructions of thought, are formed within experience, not the other way around. (Wendell Berry)

Art is a language that many people can understand but few can speak. (Eleanor Blair)

Kindness is a language the dumb can speak and the deaf can hear and understand. (Christian Nestell Bovee)

Language is a mixture of statement and evocation. (Elizabeth Bowen)

I can ask for cigarettes in every language. (David Bowie)

Art is a basic human language that is universal among cultures and across time. (Peter William Brown)

Language exists less to record the actual than to liberate the imagination. (Anthony Burgess)

Today I hear every language as if it were the only one, and when I hear of one that is dying, it overwhelms me as though it were the death of the earth. (Elias Canetti)

Contrary to the artistic expressions that characterize the world of art as we have known for a millennium, contemporary art has reached a hermetic language that requires constant translation from the pompous words of screwed critics. (Vittorio Canta)

By and large, language is a tool for concealing the truth. (George Carlin)

I sat staring, staring, staring - half lost, learning a new language or rather the same language in a different dialect. (Emily Carr)

So women are at the beginning of building a language, and not all women are conscious of it. (Judy Chicago)

Visuals = the language of intuition. (Eileen M. Clegg)

Language is the armory of the human mind, and at once contains the trophies of its past and the weapons of its future conquests. (Samuel Taylor Coleridge)

Galleries and potential clients expect us to know what we're talking about. Even though our first language is visual... Knowing a few technical terms to describe our work is essential. (Nikki Coulombe)

Art is the only true language that, for those who appreciate it, may do so on their own terms, with their own personal spin and without the need for an interpreter. (Dwayne Davis)

Language is not only the vehicle of thought, it is a great and efficient instrument in thinking. (Humphrey Davy)

It is only possible to speak in the language and in the spirit of one's time. (Eugene Delacroix)

Painting is by nature a luminous language. (Robert Delaunay)

Over time, experience will think you through the technicalities; the language will surface not as a language but a translation, a message. (Laurie DeMatteo)

The Germans and I no longer speak the same language. (Marlene Dietrich)

Knowing that language has done so much, we want to believe that it can do everything. (Denis Donoghue)

As our dreams make evident, the psyche's own language is that of image, and not idea. (Christine Downing)

Art is a language, an instrument of knowledge, an instrument of communication. (Jean Dubuffet)

The poem is the literary form of the 21st century. It's able to connect young people in a deep way to language... it's language as play. (Carol Ann Duffy)

The limits of our language do not define the limits of our cognition. (Elliot W. Eisner)

Language is fossil poetry. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

Language is a city to the building of which every human being brought a stone. (Ralph Waldo Emerson)

We always translate the other person's language into our own language. (Milton H. Erickson)

Music is the only language in which you cannot say a mean or sarcastic thing. (Lord Erskine)

-Middlesex...
Emotions aren't covered by single words. I don't believe in 'sadness,' 'joy,' or 'regret.' Maybe the best proof that the language is patriarchal is that it oversimplifies feeling. (Jeffrey Eugenides)

I always say: This is A CRAZY language!!! (Moh Faris)

Language is like a cracked kettle on which we beat out tunes for bears to dance to, while all the time we long to move the stars to pity. (Gustave Flaubert)

The style of an author should be the image of his mind, but the choice and command of language is the fruit of exercise. (Edward Gibbon)

It is not the language of painters but the language of nature one should listen to... (Vincent van Gogh)

My use of language is part and parcel of my message. (Theo van Gogh, film director)

When speech is divorced from speaker and word from meaning, what is left is just ritual, language as ritual. (Ellen Goodman)

I seek a form of language which will express my ideas for our time. (Arshile Gorky)

Dance is the hidden language of the soul. (Martha Graham)

The language of art is celestial in origin and can only be understood by the chosen. (El Greco)

Mama had an appreciation of the language. She taught me a love of words, of how they should be used and how they can fill a creative soul with a passion and lead to a life's work. (Lewis Grizzard)

We can write the new chapters in a visual language whose prose and poetry will need no translation. (Ernst Haas)

The thought of today cannot be expressed in the language of yesterday. (Lawren Harris)

If we could talk to the animals, learn their languages, maybe take an animal degree... (Rex Harrison)

Music is the soul of language. (Max Heindel)

-Stranger in a Strange Land...
It's up to the artist to use language that can be understood, not hide it in some private code... obscurity is usually the refuge of incompetence. (Robert A. Heinlein)

Know what the old masters did. Know how they composed their pictures, but do not fall into the conventions they established. These conventions were right for them, and they are wonderful. They made their language. You make yours. All the past can help you. (Robert Henri)

The eyes have one language everywhere. (George Herbert)

Painting is another dimension of language - where an image or a part of it can say far more, more profoundly and more rapidly, than it would be possible with words. (Peter Heuscher)

Language is a living thing. We can feel it changing. Parts of it become old: they drop off and are forgotten. New pieces bud out, spread into leaves, and become big branches, proliferating. (Gilbert Highet)

The chief virtue that language can have is clearness, and nothing detracts from it so much as the use of unfamiliar words. (Hippocrates)

Because it's visual art, a lot of it comes from childhood experience but then a lot comes from the visual language - in advertising and stuff like that - which is around us. (Damien Hirst)

A drawing or painting can appeal across the barriers of time and space with a language of its own - direct, immediate and alive. (Janet Allen and John Holden)

Every language is a temple, in which the soul of those who speak it is enshrined. (Oliver Wendell Holmes)

Language is the blood of the soul into which thoughts run and out of which they grow. (Oliver Wendell Holmes)

-to Eugene Benson...
Artists should never look at pictures, but should stutter in a language of their own. (Winslow Homer)

Language is by its very nature a communal thing; that is, it expresses never the exact thing but a compromise - that which is common to you, me and everybody. (Thomas Ernest Hulme)

Language is a left-brain activity. If you're doing art, you can't think in words because you're in your right brain. (Pepper Hume)

How many languages do we really speak? (Alfredo Jaar)

Painting is something that thought slows down. The logical process of thought is a completely different language. (Melissa Jean)

-on symbolism in Nordic myths...
If a symbolic language dies, it tortures us like a nightmare, like a thousand piece orchestra grating on our nerves and tearing our mind to pieces... It is a corpse with no symbolic power or strength. (Asger Jorn)

I paint with a language I can call my own... it takes a ruthless honesty with oneself. If one admires or is influenced by anyone else, one is not being true to oneself. (Scott Kahn)

The idea is that the object has a language unto itself. (Anish Kapoor)

Do you know why language manifests itself the way it does in my work? It's because I understand short attention spans. (Barbara Kruger)

I think I developed language skills to deal with threat. It's the girl thing to do - you know, instead of pulling out a gun. (Barbara Kruger)

The so-called language of Barbara Kruger is vernacular language. Obviously, I pick through bits and pieces of it and figure out to some degree how to objectify my experience of the world, using pictures and words that construct and contain me. (Barbara Kruger)

Language is the currency of consciousness. We speak to fill the void. We write it down to remember. (Andrew Lakey)

Unencountered Language is the court and spark between words we recognize and those we don't. (Andrew Lakey)

When I read Shakespeare I am struck with wonder / That such trivial people should muse and thunder / In such lovely language. (D. H. Lawrence)

Language is a form of human reason, which has its internal logic of which man knows nothing. (Claude Levi-Strauss)

Language exists to communicate whatever it can communicate. Some things it communicates so badly that we never attempt to communicate them by words if any other medium is available. (C. S. Lewis)

In order for the human community to benefit from the contributions of the artist, it must first learn the language that he uses in his work. In order to understand what is said in a language, you first have to learn the language. (Alberto Magnelli)

The language of prose is very different than the language of cinema, so the movie has to successfully translate what was in the book. (Yann Martel)

The cry of a baby is the same in any language. (Mick Maslen)

Language can be a way of hiding your thoughts and preventing communication. (Abraham Maslow)

Great art speaks a language which every intelligent person can understand. The people who call themselves modernists today speak a different language. (Marshall McLuhan)

Like a foreign language, I use painting to translate ideas, feelings, and moods related to my subjects... not literal translations, but statements of my emotions. (Joseph Mendez)

Experiment is necessary in establishing an academy, but certain principles must apply to this business of art as to any other business which affects the artistic sense of the community. Great art speaks a language which every intelligent person can understand. The people who call themselves modernists today speak a different language. (Robert Menzies)

The full meaning of a language is never translatable into another. We may speak several languages but one of them always remains the one in which we live. In order completely to assimilate a language it would be necessary to make the world which it expresses one's own and one never does belong to two worlds at once. (Maurice Merleau-Ponty)

What you say affects how you feel. How you feel affects how you think, and vice versa. All language, feelings, and thoughts interact with each other, and the entire accumulation of those influences creates your output and behavior. (Michael Michalko)

Also, they don't understand - writing is language. The use of language. The language to create image, the language to create drama. It requires a skill of learning how to use language. (John Milius)

If you cannot be the master of your language, you must be its slave. If you cannot examine your thoughts, you have no choice but to think them, however silly they may be. (Richard Mitchell)

Language is not always simple and mono-syllabic. Nuance often has to be expressed in slightly more complex ways. Visual art is not always straightforward or an easy direct read, obtaining totality of meaning at first glance. (Gabriella Morrison)

The problems of inventing a new language are staggering. But what else can one do if one needs to express one's feeling precisely? (Robert Motherwell)

The substance of the winds is too thin for human eyes, their written language is too difficult for human minds, and their spoken language mostly too faint for the ears. (John Muir)

The problem with defending the purity of the English language is that English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for new vocabulary. (James D. Nicoll)

Sometimes I look at a painting by another artist and I see a universal language that we're both trying to express. I feel that we're on the same path, that we share the same intentions, and that's inspiring to me. (Birgit O'Connor)

Artwork must bear elements of beauty and emotions; it must appeal to human feelings because art is an international language connecting people. (Valentin Okorokov)

If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought. (George Orwell)

Language ought to be the joint creation of poets and manual workers. (George Orwell)

As far as I am concerned, a painting speaks for itself. What is the use of giving explanations, when all is said and done? A painter has only one language. (Pablo Picasso)

Great Literature is simply language charged with meaning to the utmost possible degree. (Ezra Pound)

Color is a language. It is the language of painting. How painting expresses itself is in large part with color. (Joseph Raffael)

In truth, factual information - names or dates - have never interested me much. Those things are like an alien language that can interfere with the language of the painting, or even prevent its emergence. (Gerhard Richter)

In teaching English as a foreign language, students often ask why English does not have a word for_____. I have to tell them that English developed as a language of business (it did) and business people are highly unimaginative. (Norman Ridenour)

Music, imaginative arts are all-mankind languages... The role of art and artist is to create, keep, defend and develop these all-mankind languages - each drop of created art saves the World! (Yaroslaw Rozputnyak)

If you listen to the urban speech patterns in India you'll find it's quite characteristic that a sentence will begin in one language, go through a second language and end in a third. It's the very playful, very natural result of juggling languages. You are always reaching for the most appropriate phrase. (Salman Rushdie)

Language is courage: the ability to conceive a thought, to speak it, and by doing so to make it true. (Salman Rushdie)

Language serves not only to express thoughts, but to make possible thoughts which could not exist without it. (Bertrand Russell)

Slang is a language that rolls up its sleeves, spits on its hands and goes to work. (Carl Sandburg)

I can't tell a story in the white man's language, so I say what I want to say with my paintings. (Allen Sapp)

Be able to correctly pronounce the words you would like to speak and have excellent spoken grammar. (Marilyn vos Savant)

It's my language, the language I speak. I've spent a lot more time playing music than talking or writing. (Nitin Sawhney)

To transform experience and thought into language and narrative - that is beautiful even if that beauty is in brokenness. (Alice Sebold)

Painting is the way I speak. I had such an anxiety-ridden youth that when I started to paint, it was as though I was speaking for the first time. I was creating a visual language through which I could say anything I wanted. (Joan Snyder)

Language is not neutral. It is not merely a vehicle which carries ideas. It is itself a shaper of ideas. (Dale Spender)

Speech happens to not be his language. (Madame de Stael)

The world was made before English language, and seemingly upon a different design. (Robert Louis Stevenson)

Poetry is, first and last, language - the rest is filler. (Mark Strand)

Language grows out of life, out of its needs and experiences... Good work in language presupposes and depends on a real knowledge of things. (Anne Sullivan)

Put a symbol, or language of some sort, in a painting and it will be noticed by the viewer whether or not they can read that particular language. (Mike Svob)

'Tis obvious what rapport there is between the conceptions and languages in every country, and how great a difference this must make in the excellence of books. (Sir William Temple)

The great thing about human language is that it prevents us from sticking to the matter at hand. (Lewis Thomas)

Language is the amber in which a thousand precious thoughts have been safely embedded and preserved. (Richard Trench)

No one questions the fact that verbal language has to be learned, but the commonplaceness of visual experience betrays art; people tend to assume that, because they can see, they can see art. (Anne Truitt)

Language should fulfill your individual existence as a wholesome human being... Language should be more than just getting by. (Chogyam Trungpa)

Language is very powerful. Language does not just describe reality. Language creates the reality it describes. (Desmond Tutu)

Language is a city to the building of which every human being brought a stone. (Mark Twain)

As societies grow decadent, the language grows decadent, too. Words are used to disguise, not to illuminate, action... (Gore Vidal)

O admirable necessity! O powerful action! What mind can penetrate your nature? What language can express this marvel? None, to be sure. This is where human discourse turns toward the contemplation of the divine. (Leonardo da Vinci)

Tears are the silent language of grief. (Voltaire)

Art is, after all, a visual work made up of marks, shapes, color and tones, rather than words. As your artistic skill and vocabulary develop, you will be able to express increasingly complicated concepts. (Van Waldron)

The visual language of metaphors is one we all speak, consciously or not. We all dream in that language. (Coulter Watt)

-The Path to Twelve-Note Composition, 1932...
What is music? Music is language. A human being wants to express ideas in this language, but not ideas that can be translated into concepts... (Anton Webern)

Profound music leads us - beyond language - to the dark roots of our scream and the celestial heights of our silence. (Cornel West)

We have really everything in common with America nowadays except, of course, language. (Oscar Wilde)

The future author is one who discovers that language, the exploration and manipulation of the resources of language, will serve him in winning through to his way. (Thornton Wilder)

The limits of my language are the limits of my world. (Ludwig Wittgenstein)

Like everything metaphysical the harmony between thought and reality is to be found in the grammar of the language. (Ludwig Wittgenstein)

Language is a part of our organism and no less complicated than it. (Ludwig Wittgenstein)

Please sing me a song of journey using that forgotten ancient language / Please call for the beautiful land in my heart using that whispering voice. (Murong Xi)

Conceptual works seem to be like a sentence that needs translating from another language. Once you've done it, it's done. No more mystery. All you need is the unlocking key. (Brian Crawford Young)


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Last modified: April 19, 2014