Photo of James Baldwin

James Baldwin // "Most people live in almost total darkness…people, millions of people whom you will never see, who don’t know you, never will know you, people who may try to kill you in the morning, live in a darkness which...if you have that funny terrible thing which every artist can recognize and no artist can are responsible to those people to lighten, and it does not matter what happens to you. You are being used in the way a crab is useful, the way sand certainly has some function. It is impersonal. This force which you didn’t ask for, and this destiny which you must accept, is also your responsibility. And if you survive it, if you don’t cheat, if you don’t lie, it is not only, you know, your glory, your achievement, it is almost our only hope... Because only an artist can tell, and only artists have told since we have heard of man, what it is like for anyone who gets to this planet to survive it. What it is like to die, or to have somebody die; what it is like to be glad... The trouble is that although the artist can do it, the price that he has to pay himself and that you, the audience, must also pay, is a willingness to give up everything, to realize that although you spent twenty-seven years acquiring this house, this furniture, this position, although you spent forty years raising this child, these children, nothing, none of it belongs to you. You can only have it by letting it go. You can only take if you are prepared to give... It is a total risk of everything, of you and who you think you are, who you think you’d like to be, where you think you’d like to go...everything, and this forever, forever."

Photo of Jack Kerouac

Jack Kerouac // "Listen to the silence inside the illusion of the world, and you will remember the lesson you forgot."

Photo of Kate Bush

Kate Bush // "That's what all art's about…a sense of moving away from boundaries that you can't in real life. Like a dancer is always trying to fly…to do something that's just not possible. But you try to do as much as you can within those physical boundaries."

Photo of Tom Waits

Tom Waits // "Don't plant your bad days. They grow into weeks. The weeks grow into months. Before you know it you got yourself a bad year. Take it from me. Choke those little bad days. Choke 'em down to nothin'. They're your days. Choke 'em!"

Photo of Gilles Deleuze

Gilles Deleuze // "The problem is no longer getting people to express themselves, but providing little gaps of solitude and silence in which they might eventually find something to say... What a relief to have nothing to say, the right to say nothing, because only then is there a chance of framing...the thing that might be worth saying."

Photo of Jacques Brel

Jacques Brel // "I wish you endless dreams and the furious desire to realize some of them. I wish you to love what must be loved, and to forget what must be forgotten. I wish you passions. I wish you silences. I wish you birdsongs as you wake up and children’s laughter. I wish you to respect the differences of others, because the worth and virtues of each person often remain to be discovered. I wish you to resist the stagnation, the indifference, and the negative values of our time. I wish you at last to never to give up the search, for adventure, life, love. For life is a wonderful adventure and no reasonable person should give it up without a tough fight. I wish you above all to be yourself, proud of being and happy, for happiness is our true destiny."

Photo of Anais Nin

Anais Nin // "Reality doesn't impress me. I only believe in intoxication, in ecstasy, and when ordinary life shackles me, I escape, one way or another. No more walls."

Photo of T.S. Eliot

T.S. Eliot // "What we know of other people is only our memory of the moments during which we knew them. And they have changed since then. To pretend that they and we are the same is a useful and convenient social convention which must sometimes be broken. We must remember that at every meeting we are meeting a stranger."

Photo of Edward Gorey

Edward Gorey // "All the things you can talk about in anyone's work are the things that are least important... You can describe all the externals of a performance...everything, in fact, but what really constitutes its core. Explaining something makes it go away, so to speak; what's important is what's left over after you've explained everything else."

Photo of Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf // "I begin to long for some little language such as lovers use, broken words, inarticulate words, like the shuffling of feet on the pavement… I need…words of one syllable such as children speak... I need a howl; a cry… Nothing neat. Nothing that comes down with all its feet on the floor."

Photo of James Baldwin

James Baldwin // "The place in which I'll fit will not exist until I make it."

Photo of Milton Glaser

Milton Glaser // "You feel differently towards the world when you make things."