It is the studies, rather than the major works, that reveal everything. I find myself increasingly making work from the slightest of sources. I think this is because in almost every case, we can find out so much more about an artist’s intentions (and worth) from the etchings, the drawings, the studies, the macquettes, than from the set pieces of even the great masters. The masterpieces which disprove this are so often raw themselves: To take two obvious cases, Goya’s The 3rd of May and Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon let us in. Artists work so hard to disguise themselves, ignoring Nietzsche’s advice to ‘become yourself’. The truth often lies within sketchbooks, palettes and offhand comments.
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