"All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once (s)he grows up."
- Pablo Picasso, Artist (1881-1973)
A great quote that I just happened upon this morning. I think there is some real truth to what Picasso is saying here. In the final analysis though, I disagree in part with what he is saying. I think it is definately true that we are born with certain sensibilties toward the artistic, intuitive and emotional side of life. I also agree that society, in an effort to make one more 'productive' and 'well-adjusted', detracts from and minimalizes the value of those sensibilities. In a wiser society than ours, we would cherish the intuitive nature of childhood creativity and learn how to grow it, spread it, and use it to fix the problems that face us and to discover new and more important sets of problems to work with.
On the other hand... I do think that Picasso oversimplifies here. It may be true that we need to hold on to that childhood artist, but that is only part of it. To imply that all one needs to do to be an artist is to refuse to grow up or something- that's just silly. It is necessary, if one wishes to be an artist, to be at once a child and an adult. One must study existence and drink in life deeply- one must constantly be destroying in order to create... and that destruction is usually done upon the self and requires discipline and a certain amount of selfishness (delusions of grandeur). Being a child at heart is a start... but some great force inside must also be able to startle that child into the margins of genius if he/she is to be considered an original artist.