The Hidden Sphere
(of Artistic Concerns) Cecil Orion Touchon


This harmony is infinite in its creative capacity.
Before anything came to be harmony precedes it, shapes it, forms it.
After everything has passed away harmony still remains.

It has no desire of its own,
it is selfless in identity
as is the silence between notes of music.
Yet, like silence is for music,
it is the support and power of all beings.

Therefore, the mastercraftsman becomes selfless while working.
He does not impose his will.
He lets his work form of itself.(1)
For this reason he is a master .(2)

(1) I consider my studio a kitchen garden. There are artichokes over there, potatoes over here. You have to cut off the leaves for the fruit to grow. At a certain point you have to cut. I work like a gardener, or a vine grower. Things come slowly. I didn’t discover my vocabulary of shapes all at once, for example. It took shape almost despite myself.
 Things follow their natural course. They grow, they ripen. You have to graft. You have to irrigate, like for salad. It ripens in my mind. So I am always working on an enormous number of things at the same time. And even in different domains: painting, etching, lithography, sculpture, ceramics.
Joan Miro, remarks collected by Yvon Taillandier

  “When I am in my painting, I’m not aware of what I am doing. It is only after a sort of “get acquainted” period that I see what I have been about. I have no fears about making changes, destroying the image, etc., because the Painting has a life of it’s own. I try to let it come through. It is only wen I lose contact with the painting that the result is a mess. Otherwise there is pure harmony, an ease of give and take, and the painting comes out well.

Jackson Pollock, “My Painting” Possibilities 1 (Winter 1947-48)

 (2) "The best thing that a human can do in life is to get rid of his seperateness or selfness and hand himself over to the nature of things - to this mysterious thing called the Universal Order, that an artist must sense. To put yourself in the way of that Thing so that you become a vehicle of it - this will be your only merit - to put yourself in the way."
Will Henry Stevens, quoted in Bernard Lemann, "

Will Henry's Nature" (c. 1946-47), manuscript copy courtesy of Robert P. Coggins


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copyright 2000 Cecil Touchon all rights reserved