Valuable Delusions

Taking risks, crossing boundaries, reconsidering our own limitations.

Photo of Nick Wilson
4 4

Written by

The analogy is painting.  Richard Diebenkorn wrote "Notes to myself on beginning a painting."

  • Attempt what is not certain.  Certainty may or may not come later.  It may then be a valuable delusion.
  • The pretty, initial position which falls short of completeness is not to be valued — except as a stimulus for further moves.
  • Do search.  But in order to find other than what is searched for.
  • Use and respond to the initial fresh qualities but consider them absolutely expendable.
  • Don't “discover” a subject — of any kind.
  • Somehow don’t be bored — but if you must, use it in action.  Use its destructive potential.
  • Mistakes can’t be erased but they move you from your present position.
  • Keep thinking about Polyanna.
  • Tolerate chaos.
  • Be careful only in a perverse way.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Sarah Lundy

Diebenkorn's reminders to himself to, "search. But in order to find other than what is searched for" and to "Tolerate chaos" are close parallels to the experience we've undertaken here. Thanks for reminding us of the close intersection between teaching and art.

View all comments