What is an artist?

They are flexible, adaptable, resilient and committed… And they are not a separate breed of human.  In fact, our artists are also often our health directors, our firefighters, our teachers, our fishing guides and our mill workers…  Our artists are the animators of our communities, the voices of our ancestors, and the most highly regarded mentors of our youth… The artists are the eyes, the ears, the voices, the storytellers of the people.

Artists are individuals willing to articulate in the face of flux and transformation.

  • From A Director Prepares: seven essays on Art and Theatre by Anne Bogart

Picasso said that an artist’s task is to discover things and then find out what they are.

For Westerners, thinking only involves the head.  But in Japan, the heart is the driving force for thought.  The ideogram for the word ‘thought’ displays a field over a heart.  The heart nourishes and helps ideas grow in the field.  This image is very close to what for years I’ve called the intelligence of the heart.

It’s a question of openness…  This ability to admit to your mistakes, to give up on earlier convictions, inevitably involves doubt, a primordial condition of creation.  People think you have to find the answer,  but what you need is to create the question.

Few people in theatre know as much about this art form as Peter Brook, but he seems convinced that he knows nothing about it…  Personally, I haven’t yet reached that level of doubt.

  • From Connecting Flights, by Robert Lepage