Notes about permanence

December 22, 2009 permalink

One of the Artists Desires Is to Give an Account

One of the artist’s desires is to give an account of reality and at the same time to protect it against oblivion and death, and this effort is bound to fail; failure is there from the beginning. For example, Giacometti knows that he cannot grasp life: he will do his brother’s bust and his wife’s portrait again and again without ever achieving his aim, but this explicit failure is part of the beauty of his work.

Gerhard Richter, quoted in The Claude Glass by Arnaud Maillet, p. 200.