— Riiko Sakkinen Finnish visual artist 1976
Context: Art is a weapon and the weapons can change the world. Good art is irreverent, excessive, controversial, incorrect, irritating, ironic, bad behaving, playful and beautiful or ugly. "Art" at riikosakkinen.com http://www.riikosakkinen.com/info/quotes/
— Riiko Sakkinen Finnish visual artist 1976
— Pablo Picasso Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer 1881 - 1973
La peinture n'est pas faite pour décorer des appartements. C'est un instrument de guerre offensive et défensive contre l'ennemi. La pintura no se ha inventado para adornar las habitaciones. La pintura es un arma ofensiva, en la defensa contra el enemigo. Les lettres françaises (1943-03-24).
— Gottfried Helnwein Austrian photographer and painter 1948
Interview by Marc Kayser, art-magazine Quest, Berlin, March 2004
„The Art of painting is itself an intensely personal activity… a picture is a unique and private event in the life of the painter“
— Patrick Swift British artist 1927 - 1983
Context: The Art of painting is itself an intensely personal activity… a picture is a unique and private event in the life of the painter: an object made alone with a man and a blank canvas... A real painting is something which happens to the painter once in a given minute; it is unique in that it will never happen again and in this sense is an impossible object... And it is something which happens in life not in art: a picture which was merely the product of art would not be very interesting and could tell us nothing we were not already aware of. The old saying, “what you don’t know can’t hurt you”, expresses the opposite idea to that which animates the painter before his canvas. It is precisely what he does not know which may destroy him. "The Painter in the Press", X magazine, Vol. I, No.4 (October 1960).
„A thrown-stone trajectory is a good metaphor for so many phenomena: the curve of an event, any event; the curve of a life, any life; the curve of a hypothesis; the curve experienced in the manufacture of a work of art; the curve of interest experienced in the manufacture of a catalogue.“
— Peter Greenaway British film director 1942
„Auto-destructive art is conceived as a desperate last-minute subversive political weapon used by artists. It is an attack on the Capitalist system and the production of war materials. It is committed to nuclear disarmament and people's struggle.“
— Gustav Metzger Artist and political activist 1926
In: Ark, Nr. 30-37, 1962.
„I think art is the only political power, the only revolutionary power, the only evolutionary power, the only power to free humankind form all repression. I say not that art has already realized this, on the contrary, and because it has not, it has to be developed as a weapon, at first there are radical levels, then you can speak about special details.“
— Joseph Beuys German visual artist 1921 - 1986
Quoted in: Robert C. Morgan (1978). The Role of Documentation in Conceptual Art: : An Aesthetic Inquiry. p. 176.
„The idea of an art world forms the backbone of my analysis. "Art world" is commonly used by writers on the arts in a loose and metaphoric way, mostly to refer to the most fashionable people associated with those newsworthy objects and events that command astronomical prices. I have used the term in a more technical way, to denote the the network of people whose cooperative activity, organized via their joint knowledge of conventional means of doing things, produce(s) the kind of art works that art world is noted for.“
— Howard S. Becker American sociologist 1928
„Far from affording artists continuous inspiration, mass-media sources for art have become a dead end. They have combined with the abstractness of institutional art teaching to produce a fine-arts culture given over to information and not experience. This faithfully echoes the drain of concreteness from modern existence— the reign of mere unassimilated data instead of events that gain meaning by being absorbed into the fabric of imaginative life.“
— Robert Hughes Australian critic, historian, writer 1938 - 2012
"Introduction: The Decline of the City of Mahagonny"
„What we cannot express by the art of thinking, by the art of Science or philosophy or logic, we can and should express by the poetic, visual, or some other arts. It is for that reason that I consider morals and aesthetics one and the same; for they cover only one impulse, one drive inherent in our consciousness - to bring our life and all our actions into a satisfactory relationship with the events of the world, as our consciousness want it to be, in harmony with our life and according to the laws of consciousness itself - Naum Gabo“
— Naum Gabo Russian sculptor 1890 - 1977
Quote from The Quotable Artist, by Peggy Hadden; Skyhorse Publishing, Inc., 2010; not paged
„The United States would seek more than the mere reduction or elimination of atomic materials for military purposes. It is not enough to take this weapon out of the hands of the soldiers. It must be put into the hands of those who will know how to strip its military casing and adapt it to the arts of peace.“
— Dwight D. Eisenhower American general and politician, 34th president of the United States (in office from 1953 to 1961) 1890 - 1969
„[Our purpose is] to ensure that literature and art fit well into the whole revolutionary machine as a component part, that they operate as powerful weapons for uniting and educating the people and for attacking and destroying the enemy, and that they help the people fight the enemy with one heart and one mind.“
— Mao Zedong Chairman of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of China 1893 - 1976
Chapter 32 https://www.marxists.org/reference/archive/mao/works/red-book/ch32.htm, originally published in Talks at the Yenan Forum on Literature and Art (May 1942), Selected Works, Vol. III, p. 84.
„The enormous amount of financial resources and creative energy that nations have spent on wars and weapons could have been redirected to curing deadly diseases, feeding the hungry, eliminating poverty, promoting art and culture, investing in renewable clean energy, and solving a host of other important challenges facing humanity.“
— Newton Lee American computer scientist
„In this time of the great struggle for a new art we fight like disorganized 'savages' against an old, established power. The battle seems to be unequal, but spiritual matters are never decided by numbers, only by the power of ideas. The dreaded weapons of the 'savages' are their new ideas. New ideas kill better than steel and destroy what was thought to be indestructible.“
— Franz Marc German painter 1880 - 1916