Richard Diebenkorn Writings

Artist's writing
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Artist's writing
< Scroll left to right >
Artist's writing
Artist's writing

Artist's writing

Credit Line:
© Richard Diebenkorn Foundation
RD number:

[Image 1]

My beliefs in painting are at present divided between those deriving from the example of the painters I admire most (Matisse, Miro, Mondrian, and Bonnard) who present a vision of the world in terms of the acts, problems and realizations of painting, and those arising from a concern for with a more specifically human interpretation. The latter [strikethrough] may be [/strikethrough] would be included in what Mondrian refers to as “the tragic”. Seeing these divergent intentions expressed in words suggests the necessity of choosing one or the other. I must however believe that it is possible to strike some sort of balance between them since I think that ideas, however ambivalent or contradictory, can be synthesized and fully expressed in painting.
Richard Diebenkorn

[Image 2]

I [strikethrough] just [/strikethrough] don’t think I can make a statement now because I would want a statement [strikethrough] to represent [/strikethrough] to [strikethrough] tell where I am at the moment [/strikethrough] describe a firm position and not describe my present hesitation. My [strikethrough] present [/strikethrough] conflict now is that I see clearly that I have departed from my ideal [strikethrough] of [/strikethrough] which [strikethrough] involves ones presentation [/strikethrough] was to present a vision of the world simply in terms of the acts, problems and realizations of painting. On the other hand the need I have to interpret in favor of [strikethrough] service-minded concerns such as the [/strikethrough] feelings about people and maybe even the “human predicament” [strikethrough] (I’m [/strikethrough] (this just comes out – especially in painting the figure [strikethrough]) and I seem compelled to do that [/strikethrough] and is not serious-mindedly considered) is very strong. In looking at the painting of others I see on one hand a pillar of strength, Matisse, Miro, Mondrian, [strikethrough] and [/strikethrough] Bonnard [strikethrough] on one hand [/strikethrough] and several Americans [strikethrough] on one hand [/strikethrough] and on the other some pretty poor contemporary work by artists who [strikethrough] which [/strikethrough] subscribe to the “human predicament” position. I intend to continue trying to make some kind of synthesize but can’t say now what it will be.



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