Collection of Art Quotes- With Short Explanation

art quotes list with short explanation 3000

Everyone is an admirer when it comes to art, that doesn’t mean the art has to be a painting or something done on a canvas, it can be any form of art, people are different in their ways and so is the art they admire. If asked, “who has the most freedom to express themselves?” I would say an artist and it is true because only artists can express their feelings through the art they are good at without actually having to speak about it. In this article, we will be presenting you with a collection of Art Quotes from different artists all across the world and also try to explain the meaning beneath the quotes in an easier way for you to use them in your daily life every now and then.

Art Quotes List

  1. “I paint flowers so they will not die.” – Frida Kahlo

Frida Kahlo was a Mexican artist who is known for her self-portraits which are mainly inspired by nature. A thing that catches every eye when looking at her paintings is that she paints or incorporates a lot of flowers into her work. This might mean that she finds meaning in them and doesn’t want them to die as the natural flowers do over time.

  1. “I don’t paint dreams or nightmares, I paint my own reality.” – Frida Kahlo

It is very common for anyone to think that the artist paints what they see in their world, maybe a dream or a nightmare or some simulation they have imagined before, and yes some artists do paint what they dream however Frida here states that she just paints what happens in her real-life instead of something like a fantasy.

  1. “The principle of true art is not to portray, but to evoke.” – Jerzy Kosinski

True art never disappoints, but art is not just something that portrays the painter’s idea. What Jerzy is trying to say here, evoke means to bring or recall some memory that is in the back of your head to your conscious mind. He means bringing up a feeling in you which you might not have felt in a long time.

  1. “Creativity takes courage.” – Henri Matisse

Creativity is simply a vibrant genre of thinking and it varies from person to person, some might be subtle with their creative thoughts while some might reach the edges of the reality and it takes courage to see what is really on the other side, henceforth creativity does require a lot of courage to experience what your imagination feels like.

  1. “A picture is a poem without words.” – Horace

A poem written in words is beautiful, and a picture that immediately makes you want to put it into words is just as beautiful. It doesn’t have literal words but makes you feel like you are looking at a poem, one picture can be a thousand different things to a thousand different individuals and all of them will make sense which is why it is beautiful.

  1. “Learn the rules like a pro, so you can break them like an artist.” – Pablo Picasso

It is not at all a necessity to introduce Picasso, and yes he is always right while quoting something about art. You should always give your 100 percent when learning something irrespective of what you’re learning, only then you would know what changes would not affect the outcome to make your work easier. This quote does not just apply to art it applies to any path of life.

  1. “Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep.” – Scott Adams

The mistakes you make are not always the best at the same time they do not always end up in misery. Creativity is when you start making mistakes to make something better and true art is when you realize that leaving behind some of your mistakes doesn’t affect your work and gives it more meaning.

  1. “ Normality is a paved road: it’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow.” – Vincent Van Gogh

As all of us are already aware of what a paved road is, it is obvious that it’s comfortable to be walking on a paved road but then you are completely missing out on the beauty that the normal road holds. In the same way, it is sometimes a requirement for us to leave our normality behind and let our creativity lead our way. 

  1. “Bad artists copy, good artists steal.” – Pablo Picasso

In this quote “steal” doesn’t mean stealing, it means getting inspired. For example when you look at a painting and wonder how the artist blended the colors in the background to make it look closer to what the underlying meaning of his work is, and you think ‘I should look and learn’ and then remember it forever, you can make what you saw to but in your way. This is What exactly the quote is saying, get inspired by others, don’t copy and claim it as your own.

  1. “One can speak poetry just by arranging colors well.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Every art piece speaks something, not quite literally speaking but it does convey a message and a lot of people tend to read into it, as Van Gogh said arranging colors is a way some people convey what they think. To be more particular, artists can arrange colors in a way that looks like a poem. It generally refers to being as organized or as meaningful as a poem without actually having to use any words.

  1. “What is done in love is done well.” – Vincent Van Gogh

Yes, it is, we all try to achieve peak perfection in all the things that we love, and be it voluntarily or involuntarily we do put more interest and effort into things that we like, in simple words we make sure it looks well done which gets us back to what Van Gogh said, that is, we do well when we love what we are doing, and it is not just art it is anything we love.

  1. “I shut my eyes to see.” – Paul Gaugin

Everyone gets tired and we do sometimes feel like we should just close our eyes to escape reality for a little bit, and that is a very common thing when you are an artist or you are someone who usually takes the lead of your unconscious more in being creative, Paul Gaugin is one of those people who think closing your eyes can help you in finding something more meaningful when you are not in your comfort time.

  1. “The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.” – Sylvia Plath

A person needs to get rid of their self-doubt to leap forward in the journey of life. We imagine a lot of different things in our day and if you remember thinking “is this something I can do though?” then you should immediately start doing it because there is only one way to find out if things work out and that is putting aside yourself-doubting and letting your creativity take control.

  1. “You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.” – Maya Angelou

Creativity isn’t a resource, it is a quality and qualities are like the ocean and you cannot drain out the ocean, you can use as much water from the ocean as you can and you wouldn’t even be able to see the difference, the same way creativity is a limitless world of ideas and you can always come up with new ones without worrying of whether you have used up everything you have.

  1. “Every artist was first an amateur.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

This quote is the artist’s version of nobody is born qualified, a qualification is acquired by oneself, it’s not gifted, it is something that we should earn. In the same way, you can’t make a piece of art the very first time you lay your brush on your canvas, it takes time sometimes longer than you imagined and that is completely normal. You learn from your mistakes and that is how you slowly transform yourself from an amateur into a professional.

  1.  “All profound distractions open certain doors. You have to allow yourself to be distracted when you are unable to concentrate.” – Julio Cortazar

Although it might sound completely insensible it is true that distractions do sometimes help you realize your mistakes because, when you are distracted your mind is at peace and it is less worried about whatever you have done wrong. So when you rethink it you probably will be able to find a solution to the problem. Hence it’s not bad to allow yourself to get distracted when you cannot concentrate.

  1. “The richness I achieve comes from nature, the source of my inspiration.” – Claude Monet

Claude Monet is a world-renowned French painter who is appreciated for the richness in his work, and as he says the lavishness in his paintings comes from the nature that he is inspired by. Everyone has their start for their story and their own inspiration, Claude’s started with nature and ended in richness which is very exquisite if you ask me.

  1. “There are no rules. This is how art is born, how outbreaks happen. Go against the rules or ignore the rules. This is what invention is about.” – Helen Frankenthaler

You will see the best result only when you allow yourself to be carefree and not restrict yourself, you should break the rules if you can’t break them you have to ignore them, there are no particular set of rules for a person to achieve success, you breakout, you gather yourself back, you invest. You might lose sometimes but at the end of the day if you are persistent you will for sure see improvement and that is how inventions are made.

  1. “Life is the art of drawing without an eraser.” – John W. Gardener

Everyone makes mistakes, you learn from your mistakes, you get hurt, you try to stay calm, and sometimes you just want to cry your heart out, in the end, what matters is how you feel. When you make a mistake in art you try to cover it up with something else like an eraser, but life doesn’t give you a second choice sometimes and you have to learn from what you’ve already painted and try to make it beautiful by not making the same mistake for the second time.

  1. “There is no retirement to an artist, it’s your way of living so there’s no end to it.” – Henry Moore

When you have invested yourself in something a little too much it is hard to retire from it or leave it behind because it becomes a part of your life and would feel like you are leaving a bit of yourself behind when you try to stop doing it, so when your an artist in an aspect of life you tend to do it till the last day because it becomes your peacemaker.

  1. “The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance.” – Aristotle

Most of the time you don’t art that replicates what already exists, you see art that makes you wish for it to be real, so if you are not able to make a top-notch replica of what you saw it is completely fine until and unless it conveys the message you were trying to convey because when it comes to art there is no communication barrier it is a universal language which makes you understand what you are supposed to understand without even talking.

  1. “Every heart sings a song, incomplete until another heart whispers back. Those who wish to sing always find a song. At the touch of a lover, everyone becomes a poet.” – Plato

This is Plato’s way of saying everything has beauty but not everyone can see it. What you think is unique might come across as strange to some until you find the person who appreciates things the same way you do you wouldn’t feel complete, your words might not make sense to everyone but the one person you found would understand you by just looking into your eyes.

  1. “I don’t want life to imitate art. I want life to be art.” – Carrie Fisher

Imitating something doesn’t really have a meaning of its own, when something doesn’t have its own meaning people wouldn’t be as interested. In the same way, you shouldn’t try to replace your life the way you see someone else do it, you should live your life the way you want to. In the end, everyone has a different story, they might be normal, adventurous, exciting, peaceful, or any other way but all of them are true pieces of art.

  1. “The beginning is perhaps more difficult than anything else, but keep heart, it will turn out alright.” – Vincent Van Gogh

It doesn’t come by as a great surprise if someone says the beginning is a bit difficult because it is how things happen, it’s the nature there isn’t much we can do about it than to put our heart into it for us to get the hang of it, no one can be exclusively impressive from the very start you have to learn it, we learn at different paces but we should put our heart and soul into it to make it happen the way we wanted it.

  1. “Art is the most intense mode of individualism that the world has known.” – Oscar Wilde

You would never come across two great artists with the exact same style, that is what’s called individualism and as human beings, it would be weird for us to not have our own idea of what we want to be or do, Art out of all other things helps a person express themselves the best and all of them are unique, exquisite and detailed in their own way which is why art is the most intense mode of individualism.

  1. “When it comes to art it’s important not to hide the madness.” – Atticus

This quote might not be ideal for all situations but when you are trying to create art it is a very important thing to not keep your madness locked in because you never know what could happen if you let it out, better might happen or it could get worse but as said before there is absolutely only one way to find out.

  1. “Every painting has a tiny bit of me in it.” – Maria Hegedus

When an artist makes something they do it with utter concentration, they don’t do it just for the sake of doing it or to just be done with it. They do it because they love it and everything they paint or make has a tiny bit of their thoughts, most sort out time, and a lot of care in it.

  1. “Art washes away from the soul that dust of everyday life.” – Pablo Picasso 

Life indeed has a lot of hurdles and there is no denying the fact that sometimes you trip and fall and make yourself a bit dirty inside out, in simple words sometimes you hurt yourself physically and sometimes mentally but when you are doing something you like or are interested in you find yourself drifting away from things you’ve been suffering. The same way art shakes off the dust on your soul when you try to do it.

  1. “The artist is not a different kind of person, but every person is a different kind of artist.” – Eric Gill

The artist here refers to all the artists. Every person born is a combination of thousands of different generations and their minds are the same way. No one thinks the same way which is why everyone can paint but not everyone can paint the same thing exactly the same way even if they tried to.

  1. “A beautiful body perishes, but a work of art dies not.” – Leonardo Da Vinci

When you’re an artist, the things you do will be talked about for the rest of the time even if you aren’t there. For example, the actors of the previous generation who are no more are recalled now and then for the amazing things they have been a part of, but when you come to think of it it’s the work of the artist we talk about not the person, the same way art is inevitable and immortal. People take it along with them till the end of the timeline.


Those were some of the very popular art quotes quoted by legendary artists of all time now. Art does hold a very intense form of communication in itself and that is something that needs appreciation at any time of the day. It is not easy for people to become artists but it is never impossible, just like Picasso said “If you hear your inner self say ‘you can’t paint, take a brush and start painting.” the same way if you ever self-doubt yourself just take some time off of everything you are going through at the moment and get your priorities straight because it is always the best to get things done is a nice way rather than messing them up because of the rush you were in.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is an art caption?
    A caption is generally a short phrase or a sentence that expresses the way you feel in a short time, or something that should be conveyed more effectively and easily, for example, the one or two liners you see on a plaque under a piece of art in a museum. An art caption is when the caption includes something about the work of art, an artist, or something related to art in some way.

  • How can I learn art?
    There are different forms of art and numerous ways to learn it, some learn it with the help of professionals, some by themselves, and some learn it by accident. However, you can only learn when you are passionate about it otherwise no one can help you master it.

  • Who is Van Gogh?
    Vincent Van Gogh is a world-renown Dutch painter of all time, some of his famous works of art include paintings like “the starry night”, “almond tree”, “Wheatfield with crows”, Etc. he is one of the most influential western artists till date. He was born into an upper-middle-class family in the Netherlands and was always a thoughtful and calm person who found delight in expressing himself through art.
Collection of Art Quotes- With Short Explanation

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