WHAT IS STYLE?

WHAT IS STYLE?

By the 1980s, I had been making art already for fifteen years when I learned there was a gallery on Madison Avenue that, once every month, hosted an open house for unknown artists. It was a chance to show your work to a curator. If the curator liked it, a show might follow. Armed with a selection of slides, I waited nervously until it was my turn to show what I had done.

The curator looked attentively at every image, and. perplexed, turned to me and said: “ Your work is interesting but you don’t have a style. You need a style.”

 

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OLD & NEW: DEFINING AN ARTIST'S PERSONALITY

I was reading John Elderfield’s excellent book, “The Drawings of Henri Matisse,” and came across a Matisse quotation that attracted my attention. Matisse said that In his earliest works he
“found something that was always the same which at first glance I thought to be monotonous repetition. It was the mark of my personality which appeared the same no matter what different states of mind I happened to have passed through.”

Finding and then defining this “monotonous quality” is not an easy task.

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