I am seeking for the bridge which leans from the visible to the invisible through reality.— Max Beckmann
The most genuine Max Beckmann quotes that are proven to give you inner joy
Art is creative for the sake of realization, not for amusement.
.. for transfiguration, not for the sake of play.
My figures come and go, suggested by fortune or misfortune.
I try to fix them divested of their apparent accidental quality.
There is nothing I hate more than sentimentality.
What is important to me in my work is the identity that is hidden behind so-called reality. I search for a bridge from the given present tot the invisible, rather as a famous cabalist once said, 'If you wish to grasp the invisible, penetrate as deeply as possible into the visible'.
Space, and space again, is the infinite deity which surrounds us and in which we are ourselves contained.
Height, width, and depth are the three phenomena which I must transfer into one plane to form the abstract surface of the picture, and thus to protect myself from the infinity of space.
What I want to show in my work is the idea which hides itself behind so-called reality. I am seeking for the bridge which leans from the visible to the invisible through reality. It may sound paradoxical, but it is in fact reality which forms the mystery of our existence.
My heart beats more for a raw, average vulgar art, which doesn't live between sleepy fairy-tale moods and poetry but rather concedes a direct entrance to the fearful, commonplace, splendid and the average grotesque banality in life.
The stronger and more intense my desire becomes to capture and record that which is unsayable, the more tightly my mouth stays shut.
I believe the reason I love painting so much is that it forces one to be objective.
I hardly need to abstract things, for each object is unreal enough already, so unreal that I can only make it real by means of painting.
As a painter, cursed or blessed with a terrible and vital sensuousness, I must look for wisdom with my eyes. I repeat, with my eyes, for nothing could be more ridiculous or irrelevant than a 'philosophical conception painted purely intellectually without the terrible fury of the senses grasping each visible form of beauty and ugliness.
Painting is a very difficult thing. It absorbs the whole man, body and soul, thus have I passed blindly many things which belong to real and political life.
It was so wonderful outside that even the wild senselessness of this enormous death, whose music I hear again and again, could not disturb me from my great enjoyment!
It is, of course, a luxury to create art and, on top of this, to insist on expressing one's own artistic opinion. Nothing is more luxurious than this. It is a game and a good game, at least for me; one of the few games which make life, difficult and depressing as it is sometimes, a little more interesting.
I think only of objects: of a leg or an arm, of the wonderful sense of foreshortening, breaking through the plane, of the division of space, of the combination of straight lines in relation to curved ones.
I went across the fields to avoid the straight highways, along the firing lines where people were shooting at a small wooded hill, which is now covered with wooden crosses and lines of graves instead of spring flowers.
I am working here (in Amsterdam) on my last big triptych, which will be a tremendous story, and which gives me a more intense life and exhilaration. My God, life is worth living!
The important thing is first of all to have a real love for the visible world that lies outside ourselves as well as to know the deep secret of what goes on within ourselves.
I have never, God or whatever knows, prostrated myself to be famous, but I would meander through all the sewers of the world, through all degradations and humiliations, in order to paint. I have to do this. Until the last drop every vision that exists in my being must be purged; then it will be a pleasure for me to be rid of this damned torture
All important things in art have always originated from the deepest feeling about the mystery of Being.
Politics is a subordinate matter; its form of appearance constantly changes depending on the needs of the masses, the same way cocottes adjust to the needs of men by transforming and masking themselves. Because of that it is not fundamental. That is about what endures, what is unique, what is in the stream of illusions - what is eliminated from the workings of the shadows.
The individual representation of the object, treated sympathetically or antipathetically, is highly necessary and is an enrichment to the world in form. The elimination of the human relationship causes the vacuum which makes all of us suffer in various degrees - an individual alteration of the details of the object represented is necessary in order to display on the canvas the whole physicals reality.
Learn by heart the forms to be found in nature, so that you can use them like the notes in a musical composition. That is what these forms are for. Nature is a marvelous chaos, and it is our job and our duty to bring order into that chaos and - to perfect it.
What matters is real love for things of the world outside us and for the deep secrets within us.
Love in an animal sense is an illness, but a necessity which one has to overcome.
On my left the shooting had the sharp explosion of the infantry artillery, on my right could be heard the sporadic cannon shots thundering from the front, and up above the sky was clear and the sun bright.
I passed blindly many things which belong to real and political life.
I do not weep: I loathe tears, for they are a sign of slavery.
I believe that the reason why I love painting so much is that it forces one to be objective. There is nothing I hate more than sentimentality.
The laws of art are eternal and don't change at all, as the moral laws don't change in human beings.
One thing is sure - we have to transform the three-dimensional world of objects into the two-dimensional world of the canvas.. ..To transform three into two dimensions is for me an experience full of magic in which I glimpse for a moment that fourth dimension which my whole being is seeking.
What are you? What am I? Those are the questions that constantly persecute and torment me and perhaps also play some part in my art.
In principle, any abstraction of the object is allowed which has a sufficiently strong creative power behind it.
What I want to show in my work is the idea which hides itself behind so-called reality.
One of my problems is to find the self.
One of my problems is to find the Ego, which has only one form and is immortal - to find it in animals and men, in the heaven and in the hell which together form the world in which we live.
Often, very often, I am alone. My studio in Amsterdam, (Beckmann lived in the center of Amsterdam during World War 2.) an enormous old tobacco storeroom is again filled in my imagination with figures from the old days and from the new, like an ocean moved by storm and sun and always present in my thoughts. Then shapes become beings and seem comprehensible to me in the great void and uncertainty of the space which I call god.
If you wish to get hold of the invisible you must penetrate as deeply as possible into the visible.
When spiritual, metaphysical, material, or immaterial events come into my life, I can only fix them by way of painting.
Painting constantly appeared to me as the one and only possible achievement.
The metaphysics of substance. The strange feeling which comes over us when we sense: this is skin - this is bone - all in a single vision that is completely unearthly. The dreaminess of our existence mixed at the same time with the indescribably sweet illusion of reality.