Patti Smith, fully Patricia Lee "Patti" Smith

Smith, fully Patricia Lee "Patti" Smith

American Writer, Poet, Recording Artist, Singer-Songwriter and Visual Artist

Author Quotes

Love is an angel disguised as lust.

My parents were very well read. They were both New Englanders, not highly educated, but they had a sophisticated... they were both very humanistic, and they were sophisticated readers.

People have the power to redeem the work of fools.

Say anything, he said. You can't make a mistake when you improvise.

The law of empathy, by which he could, by his will, transfer himself into an object or a work of art, and thus influence the outer world. He did not feel redeemed by the work he did. He did not seek redemption. He sought to see what others did not, the projection of his imagination.

I immersed myself in books and rock 'n' roll, the adolescent salvation.

I preferred an artist who transformed his time, not mirrored it.[reference to Andy Warhol]

I was never a singer; I can't play any instruments; I had no training. Plus, I was brought up in a time when all the great rock stars were male. I didn't have any template for what I was doing. I did what I did out of frustration and concern.

I'm an intuitive musician. I have no real technical skills. I can only play six chords on the guitar.

It was an answered prayer. The best Easter present I could ask for. When we dropped him off August 21st my prayer was 'God, please bring him back in one piece' and today my prayer was answered.

Maybe I'll be 48 and die in the gutter in Paris.

My style says, 'Look at me, don't look at me.'

People say beware, but I don't care. Their words are just rules and regulations to me.

Since childhood, it was my dream to go where all the poets and artists had been. Rimbaud, Artaud, Brancusi, Camus, Picasso, Bresson, Goddard, Jeanne Moreau, Juliette Greco, everybody - Paris for me was a Mecca.

The light poured through the windows upon his photographs and the poem of us sitting together a last time. Robert dying: creating silence. Myself, destined to live, listening closely to a silence that would take a lifetime to express.

A writer or any artist can?t expect to be embraced by the people. I've done records where it seemed like no one listened to them. You write poetry books that maybe 50 people read. And you just keep doing your work because you have to, because it?s your calling. But it?s beautiful to be embraced by the people. Some people have said to me, ?Well, don?t you think that kind of success spoils one as an artist? If you?re a punk rocker, you don?t want to have a hit record??? And I say to them, Fuck you! One does their work for the people. And the more people you can touch, the more wonderful it is. You don?t do your work and say, I only want the cool people to read it. You want everyone to be transported, or hopefully inspired by it. When I was really young, William Burroughs told me, Build a good name. Keep your name clean. Don?t make compromises. Don?t worry about making a bunch of money or being successful. Be concerned with doing good work. And make the right choices and protect your work. And if you can build a good name, eventually that name will be its own currency.

Ask me anything.

Finally, by the sea, where God is everywhere, I gradually calmed.

He took twelve pictures that day. Within a few days he showed me the contact sheet. This one has the magic, he said. When I look at it now, I never see me. I see us.

I didn't know Kurt Cobain or Amy Winehouse, but I was affected by both of their deaths because I admired their work so much and mourned their youth and work they would never produce.

I found solace in Arthur Rimbaud, in which I had come across at sixteen, on a book stall in front of the bus station in Philadelphia; his eyes had crossed my stuffy from the cover of Illuminations . He possessed a defiant able to inflame, and I had received as a compatriot, a relative, even a secret love. Not having the ninety-nine cents to buy the book myself I was put in his pocket.

A day doesn't go by where I don't create something.

Besides me wanting to be an artist, I wanted to be a movie star.

First of all, anybody who has lasted 30 and went through the 60's is really a survivor.

He waited for me, and as we headed towards the subway he said, ?One day we?ll go in together and the work will be ours.?

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Smith, fully Patricia Lee "Patti" Smith
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American Writer, Poet, Recording Artist, Singer-Songwriter and Visual Artist