Paul Gaugin, fully Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin

Gaugin, fully Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin

French Post-Impressionist Artist, Painter, Sculptor, Print-Maker, Ceramist and Writer

Author Quotes

It is better to paint from memory, for thus your work will be your own.

In painting one must search rather for suggestion than for description, as is done in music.

In order to produce something new, you have to return to the original source, to the childhood of mankind.

In matters of art one's state of mind is three-quarters of what counts, so it has to be carefully nurtured if you want to do something great and lasting.

In Europe men and women have intercourse because they love each other. In the South Seas they love each other because they have had intercourse. Who is right?

In art, there are only two types of people: revolutionaries and plagiarists. And in the end, doesn't the revolutionary's work become official, once the State takes it over?

If you see a tree as blue, then make it blue.

If I did what has already been done, I would be a plagiarist and would consider myself unworthy; so I do something different and people call me a scoundrel. I'd rather be a scoundrel than a plagiarist!

I'd like to write the way I do my paintings, that is, as fantasy takes me, as the moon dictates.

I was aware that on my skill as a painter would depend the physical and moral possession of the model.

I shut my eyes in order to see.

I plunged eagerly and passionately into the wilderness, as if in the hope of thus penetrating into the very heart of this Nature, powerful and maternal, there to blend with her living elements.

I made a promise to keep a watch over myself, to remain master of myself, so that I might become a sure observer.

I have come to an unalterable decision – to go and live forever in Polynesia. Then I can end my days in peace and freedom, without thoughts of tomorrow and this eternal struggle against idiots.

I begin to feel an enormous need to become savage and to create a new world.

I am leaving in order to have peace and quiet, to be rid of the influence of civilization. I want only to do simple, very simple art, and to be able to do that, I have to immerse myself in virgin nature, see no one but savages, live their life, with no other thought in mind but to render, the way a child would, the concepts formed in my brain and to do this with the aid of nothing but the primitive means of art, the only means that are good and true.

I am entering into the truth, into nature.

I am a great artist and I know it. It's because of what I am that I have endured so much suffering, so as to pursue my vocation, otherwise I would consider myself a rogue — which is what many people think I am, for that matter.

However depressed I may be I am not in the habit of giving up a project without having tried everything, even the 'impossible', to gain my end.

How do you see this tree? Is it really green? Use green, then, the most beautiful green on your palette. And that shadow, rather blue? Don't be afraid to paint it as blue as possible.

Having the certitude of a succession of days... equally free and beautiful, peace descends on me.

Happiness and work rose up together with the sun, radiant like it.

Go on working, freely and furiously, and you will make progress.

Follow the masters! But why should one follow them? The only reason they are masters is that they didn't follow anybody!

Do not finish your work too much. An impression is not sufficiently durable for its first freshness to survive a belated search for infinite detail; in this way you let the lava grow cool.

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Gaugin, fully Eugène Henri Paul Gauguin
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French Post-Impressionist Artist, Painter, Sculptor, Print-Maker, Ceramist and Writer