“My fan mail is enormous. Everyone is under six.”

-Alexander Calder (July 22, 1898 – November 11, 1976) was an American sculptor best known as the originator of the mobile. By contrast, Calder’s stationary sculptures are called stabiles.

“If you’re going to try, go all the way. There is no other feeling like that. You will be alone with the gods, and the nights will flame with fire. You will ride life straight to perfect laughter. It’s the only good fight there is.”

-Henry Charles Bukowski (1920-1994) was a German-born American poet, novelist and short story writer).

(Self Portrait by Charles Bukowski, date unknown

Two Figures at Desk, 1944. Milton Avery (March 7, 1885 – January 3, 1965) was an American modern painter .

“I always like to compare my work to a game of chess—fundamentally it is all about placing figures and features, something that has consequences. The one determines the other.”

-Neo Rauch (1960) is a German artist whose paintings mine the intersection of his personal history with the politics of industrial alienation.

“I like the idea of infiltrating an area that is not really exposed to me or my work.”

-Lee Alexander McQueen, CBE (17 March 1969 – 11 February 2010) was a British fashion designer and couturier.

“There is no time for cut-and-dried monotony. There is time for work. And time for love. That leaves no other time.”

-Gabrielle “Coco” Bonheur Chanel (August 19, 1883 – January 10, 1971) was a French fashion designer and founder of the Chanel brand.

“I am a potter…”

-Dame Lucie Rie, DBE (16 March 1902 – 1 April 1995) was an Austrian-born British studio potter.

“Create like a god, command like a king, work like a slave.”

-The Romanian sculptor Constantin Brancusi, (1876-1957) was a central figure of the modern movement and a pioneer of abstraction.

“Your intellect may be confused, but your emotions will never lie to you.”

RIP, Roger Joseph Ebert (June 18, 1942 – April 4, 2013) was an American journalist, film critic and screenwriter.

“From the artist there is no conscious effort to find universal truth or beauty, no effort to analyze other men’s minds in order to speak for them. His act in art is an act of personal conviction and identity.”

-David Roland Smith (March 9, 1906 – May 23, 1965) was an American Abstract Expressionist sculptor and painter, best known for creating large steel abstract geometric sculptures.

“I go out every day. When I get depressed at the office, I go out, and as soon as I’m on the street and see people, I feel better. But I never go out with a preconceived idea. I let the street speak to me.”

-William J. Cunningham (born March 13, 1929) is a fashion photographer for The New York Times, known for his candid and street photography.

I look back on my life like a good day’s work, it was done and I am satisfied with it. “

-Anna Mary Robertson Moses (September 7, 1860 – December 13, 1961), better known as “Grandma Moses”, was a renowned American folk artist.

“All my work is much more peaceful than I am.”

-Maya Ying Lin (born October 5, 1959) is an American architectural designer and artist who is known for her work in sculpture and landscape art.

“A half dozen pictures would just about be enough for the life of an artist, for my life. “

Giorgio Morandi (July 20, 1890 – June 18, 1964) was an Italian painter and printmaker who specialized in still life. Photo: Contents of Studio table.


“Well, I don’t go out much socially. I don’t enjoy going out. I enjoy working. “

-Beatrice Wood (1893 – 1998) was an American artist and studio potter, who late in life was dubbed the “Mama of Dada,” and served as a partial inspiration for the character of Rose DeWitt Bukater in James Cameron’s 1997 film, Titanic

“My illusion is to have something to transmit…If I can’t change the world, at least I want to change the way people look at it.”

-Antoni Tàpies (1923 – 2012) was a Catalan painter, sculptor and art theorist, who became one of the most famous European artists of his generation.

“I found one had to do some work every day, even at midnight, because either you’re professional or you’re not.”

-Dame Barbara Hepworth DBE (10 January 1903 – 20 May 1975) was an English sculptor.

“All I know is that whatever type of work I do, I try to give it my very best. Art has been my life.”

-Norman Percevel Rockwell (February 3, 1894 – November 8, 1978) was a 20th- century American painter and illustrator.

“….I was practically born holding a pen between my fingers, I started tracing shapes which recalled women’s legs at an age when female anatomy was not at all interesting to me. I was fascinated by shapes, lines, graphic signs which lured my observing and precocious eye…”

René Gruau (1909- 2004) was a renowned fashion illustrator whose exaggerated portrayal of fashion design through painting has had a lasting effect on the fashion industry.

“The secret of my success? You just paint women smaller and their jewelery bigger.”

-Kees van Dongen (1877 – 1968) was a Dutch painter and one of the Fauves. He gained a reputation for his sensuous, at times garish, portraits. (Photo: Brigitte Bardot and Kees van Dongen)

“Less is more. “

-Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1886 – 1969) was a German-American architect.

“I think that we have to be aware that people are allowed to make mistakes in their life. “

-Christian Dior (1905 – 1957) was a French fashion designer, best known as the founder of one of the world’s top fashion houses, also called Christian Dior.

“There are some days when I think I’m going to die from an overdose of satisfaction.”

-Salvador Dali (1904 –1989) was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Spain.

“After all, the work isn’t the point; the piece is.”
-Donald Judd (June 3, 1928 – February 12, 1994) was an American artist associated with minimalism (a term he nonetheless stridently disavowed).

“I have no plans to retire. It’s the perfect combination of work and play that keeps you young. If I quit work it would be the beginning of the end for me. “

-Hugh Marston Hefner (born April 9, 1926) is an American magazine publisher, as well as the founder and chief creative officer of Playboy Enterprises.

“Always design a thing by considering it in it’s next larger context a chair in a room, a room in a house, a house in an environment, an environment in a city plan.”

-Eero Saarinen (1910 – 1961) was a Finnish American architect and industrial designer of the 20th century. (P: TWA Terminal / Courtesy of Eero Saarinen Collection; Manuscripts and Archives, Yale University Library)

“A Work of Art… is not a living thing… that walks or runs. But the making of a life. That which gives you a reaction.”

-Louis Isadore Kahn ( 1901 – 1974) was an American architect based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States.
(P: 1962, when Kahn visited the Architectural Association, London)

“I need to be frightened of things. I hate it, but I must need it, because it’s what I do.”

-Nigella Lucy Lawson (born 6 January 1960) is an English food writer, journalist and broadcaster.

“Ideas must be put to the test. That’s why we make things, otherwise they would be no more than ideas. There is often a huge difference between an idea and its realisation. I’ve had what I thought were great ideas that just didn’t work. “

– Andy Goldsworthy, OBE (1956) is a British sculptor, photographer and environmentalist producing site-specific sculpture and land art situated in natural and urban settings. He lives and works in Scotland.

“Whatever your life’s work is, do it well. A man should do his job so well that the living, the dead, and the unborn could do it no better.

-Martin Luther King, Jr. (January 15, 1929 – April 4, 1968) was an American clergyman, activist, and leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement.

“You employ stone, wood, and concrete, and with these materials you build houses and palaces: that is construction. Ingenuity is at work. But suddenly you touch my heart, you do me good. I am happy and I say: ‘This is beautiful.’ That is Architecture.”

-Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, better known as Le Corbusier (1887– 1965), was an architect, designer, urbanist, and writer, famous for being one of the pioneers of what is now called modern architecture.

“Working on these paintings, there’s always an idea which is an ideal. It’s always impossible… But I think every time, maybe, I just get closer to some impossible thing…

-Brice Marden (born October 15, 1938), is an American artist, generally described as Minimalist, although it is difficult to categorize his work.

“To comprehend life in it slow and calm sense. The work of art requires a temperate climate in order to develop fully. In this heightened tempo which is the law of life, to determine fixed points to hold onto them and to slowly work on the achievement of the future.

-Joseph Fernand Henri Léger (February 4, 1881 – August 17, 1955) was a French painter, sculptor, and filmmaker.

“Color planning is crucial in the design of an environment. It is not enough to say that red is red and blue is blue. I work generally parallel with the colors if tones follow each other in the spectrum. Then I can control the room’s cold and warm character and create a certain mood.

Verner Panton (1926-1998) was a master of the fluid, futuristic style of 1960s design which introduced the Pop aesthetic to furniture and interiors.

(New Yorker, 1975 cover by Eugene Mihaesco)

At work: Norman Bel Geddes (April 27, 1893 – May 8, 1958) was an American theatrical and industrial designer who focused on aerodynamics.

“This is more than a success story. It is a dream come true.”

-Ada Louise Huxtable (March 14, 1921 – January 7, 2013) was an architecture critic and writer on architecture.

“I make clothes, and you create and give something. It’s most beautiful thing about my work. I have reached people who I would never have known without my work.”

-Ann Demeulemeester (born 1959, Waregem, Belgium) is a fashion designer.

“The purpose of art is to raise people to a higher level of awareness than they would otherwise attain on their own.”

-George Brassaï (pseudonym of Gyula Halász) (1899 —1984) was a Hungarian photographer, sculptor, and filmmaker who rose to international fame in France in the 20th century.

“I work like a labourer on a farm or in a vineyard. Things come to me slowly. My vocabulary of forms, for instance, has not been the discovery of a day. It took shape in spite of myself… That is why I am always working on a hundred different things at the same time.”

-Joan Miró (1893 – 1983) was a Catalan painter, sculptor, and ceramicist born in Barcelona.


“The material act of writing, comes to the fore, and the page written out by hand assumes center stage, thus occupying the very same space as that in which the novel itself unfolds, indicates that I was already aware that the fact of writing, the very means of expression, was important in itself.”

Italo Calvino (15 October 1923 – 19 September 1985) was an Italian journalist and writer of short stories and novels.

“Derive happiness in oneself from a good day’s work, from illumination the fog that surround.”

-Henri Matisse was a French artist, known for his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship.

“I found one had to do some work every day, even at midnight, because either you’re professional or you’re not.”

-Dame Barbara Hepworth DBE (10 January 1903 – 20 May 1975) was an English sculptor.

“Every morning when I wake up, I experience an exquisite joy – the joy of being Salvador Dalí – and I ask myself in rapture: What wonderful things this Salvador Dalí is going to accomplish today?”

Salvador Dalí was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Spain. (P: Dalí on his rooftop studio.)

“I’ve found that different people have different ways of working and things come to them in different ways. I think nothing is worse than to try to form people in your own image.”

TS Eliot (1888 – January 4, 1965) was a publisher, playwright, literary and social critic.

“Any great art work … revives and readapts time and space, and the measure of its success is the extent to which it makes you an inhabitant of that world – the extent to which it invites you in and lets you breathe its strange, special air.”

Leonard Bernstein was an American composer, conductor, author, music lecturer and pianist. P: 1968 © Arnold Newman.

“It is a great privilege to be able to work with, and I suppose work off, my feelings through sculpture.”

-Louise Joséphine Bourgeois (1911 – 2010) was a renowned French-American artist and sculptor, best known for her contributions to both modern and contemporary art, and for her spider structures.

“Action is the foundational key to all success.”

-Pablo Picasso, was a Spanish painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer who spent most of his adult life in France.

An increase in light gives an increase in darkness”

-Samuel Lewis Francis (1923-1994) was an American painter and printmaker.

“My use of evenly repeated dots and diagonal lines and uninflected color areas suggest that my work is right where it is, right on the canvas, definitely not a window into the world.”

-Roy Lichtenstein (1923-1997) was a prominent American pop artist. (Studio photographed by Laurie Lambrecht.)

“I work as much as fifty to sixty hours at a stretch, I gradually feel myself under the spell of the accumulation and repetition in my nets which expand beyond myself, and over the limited space of canvas, covering the floor, desks and everywhere.”

Yayoi Kusama (草間 彌生 or 弥生, Kusama Yayoi, born March 22, 1929) is a Japanese artist and writer. Photo: 1958.

“One of the greatest and simplest tools for learning more and growing is doing more. “

– Washington Irving (1783 – 1859) was an American author, essayist, biographer and historian of the early 19th century. He is best known for his short stories “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and “Rip Van Winkle”. Above: his study.

“Work is life, you know, and without it, there’s nothing but fear and insecurity.”
John Lennon & Yoko Ono, London, 1969 | photographed by Linda McCartney. (Via : Workspaces)

“I don’t work at being ordinary.”

-Paul McCartney, Scotland, 1970 | photographed by Linda McCartney

On Kawara does not give interviews or talk about his work.

On Kawara (河原 温, Kawara On, born January 2, 1933) is a Japanese conceptual artist living in New York City since 1965.

“You’ve got to build a career and a practice.”

-Robin Day – Robin Day (1915 –2010) was a British chartered industrial and furniture designer, best known for the injection moulded polypropylene stacking chair.

In the forefront, Lucienne Day (1917 – 2010) a British textile designer.

“I am doubtful of any talent, so whatever I choose to be, will be accomplished only by long study and work…”

-Jackson Pollock (January 28, 1912 – August 11, 1956), known as Jackson Pollock, was an influential American painter and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement.

“As you work, the mood grows on you… it’s true to say that the excitement and possibilities are in the working and obviously can only come in the working. “

-Francis Bacon (28 October 1909 – 28 April 1992) was an Irish-born British figurative painter known for his bold, graphic and emotionally raw imagery. (Photo: by Cecil Beaton, 1959 via Artists and Studio)

“My aim is to omit everything superfluous so that the essential is shown to the best possible advantage.”

-Dieter Rams (born May 20, 1932) is a German industrial designer closely associated with the consumer products company Braun and the Functionalist school of industrial design.

“For years I had no studio at all. I collected my pollen from early spring to August/September, and then, in the late fall, I started to be very free, not being fixed to a space. So my studio was where I collected my pollen. Then, when I was doing more and more work, I bought a beautiful space, but it’s less of a studio and more like a space where I want to see my work in and be with it.”

-Wolfgang Laib (born 25 March 1950) is a German conceptual artist working predominantly with natural materials.

“To create architecture is to put in order. Put what in order? Function and objects. ”

Le Corbusier, born Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, was a French architect originally from Switzerland. (1887 – 1965)

“There are no formulas in creative work. I do many variations, which is a question of curiosity. I arrive at many different configurations-some just slight variations, others more radical-of an original idea. It is a game of evolution.”

Paul Rand (1914 – 1996) was an American graphic designer, best known for his corporate logo designs.

“When I am working on a problem, I never think about beauty but when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong.”

-Buckminster “Bucky” Fuller was an American systems theorist, architect, engineer, author, designer, inventor, and futurist.

“My work definitely cannot avoid misunderstanding, incomprehension, and inattention. I have to accept this, and I have to work with this. I do not complain. I want to judge, and I want my work to be judged. I want to make affirmations in and with my work, and I understand that these affirmations meet incomprehension…I want to work as a fan.”

Thomas Hirschhorn (born in Bern, May 16, 1957) is a Swiss artist. Photo: Studio in Paris.

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.”

– Agatha Christie (15 September 1890 – 12 January 1976) was a British crime writer of novels, short stories, and plays.

“The underlying sense of form in my work has been the system of the Universe, or part thereof. For that is a rather large model to work from.”

-Alexander Calder (July 22, 1898 – November 11, 1976) was an American sculptor best known as the originator of the mobile.

“Follow your inner moonlight; don’t hide the madness.”

-Allen Ginsberg was an American poet and one of the leading figures of the Beat Generation in the 1950s.

“Throw your dreams into space like a kite, and you do not know what it will bring back, a new life, a new friend, a new love, a new country.”

Anaïs Nin (1903 –1977) was a French-Cuban author, based at first in France and later in the United States, who published her journals, which span more than 60 years, beginning when she was 11 years old and ending shortly before her death, her erotic literature, and short stories.

“The thing that interests me is that today painters do not have to go to a subject-matter outside themselves. Modern painters work in a different way. They work from within.”

-Jackson Pollock (January 28, 1912 – August 11, 1956) was an influential American painter and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement. (Source: Artists and Studio)

“I love to write and I assure you I write regularly … But I write for myself, for my own pleasure. And I want to be left alone to do it.”

J.D. Salinger was an American author. He last published an original work in 1965, and gave his last interview in 1980. (Photo: Salinger reads from his novel “The Catcher in the Rye” (San Diego Historical Society)

“The artist is always beginning. Any work of art which is not a beginning, an invention, a discovery is of little worth.”

Ezra Pound (30 October 1885 – 1 November 1972) was an American expatriate poet, critic and a major figure of the early modernist movement.

LIFE original caption: Journalist and writer Ezra Pound, composing profacist commentaries on stationary emblazoned with Mussolini’s motto “Liberty is a Duty, Not a Right.” (Photo Carl Mydans: Ezra Pound, 1940)

“Believe it or not, I can actually draw. “
Jean-Michel Basquiat, (December 22, 1960 – August 12, 1988) was an American artist. In his studio 57 Great Jones St – photo Tseng Kwong Chi.

“Most artists work all the time, they do actually, especially good artists, they work all the time, what else is there to do? I mean you do.”

-David Hockney, OM, CH, RA, (born 9 July 1937) is an English painter, draughtsman, printmaker, stage designer and photographer, who is based in Bridlington, Yorkshire and Kensington, London.[1]

“I don’t like work–no man does–but I like what is in the work–the chance to find yourself. Your own reality–for yourself not for others–what no other man can ever know. They can only see the mere show, and never can tell what it really means.

― Joseph Conrad, Heart of Darkness. Photo: Desk and typewriter Canterbury, England (source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bensutherland/4513141346/)

“So much of what happened to me is good fortune. But I would say: Try to get a job that gives you some time; get your sleep and a little bit of food; and work as much as you can. There’s so much enjoyment in doing what you love. Maybe this will open doors, and you’ll find a way to do what you love.”

-David Keith Lynch (born January 20, 1946) is an American filmmaker, television director, visual artist, musician and occasional actor.

“Don’t be fooled by your own wisdom.”

-Witold Gombrowicz (August 4, 1904– July 24, 1969 in Vence, near Nice, France) was a Polish novelist and dramatist.

‎”If it can be written, or thought, it can be filmed.”

Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke working on 2001: A Space Odyssey in Kubrick’s apartment in New York (from Moonwatcher’s Memoir).

“I don’t know if I work in order to do something, or in order to know why I can’t do what I want to do.”

-Alberto Giacometti (10 October 1901, Borgonovo, Stampa – 11 January 1966, Chur) was a Swiss sculptor, painter, draughtsman, and printmaker.

“When it is working, you completely go into another place, you’re tapping into things that are totally universal, completely beyond your ego and your own self. That’s what it’s all about.”

-Keith Haring (May 4, 1958 – February 16, 1990) was an artist and social activist whose work responded to the New York City street culture of the 1980s.

“Books. Cats. Life is good.”

-Edward St. John Gorey (February 22, 1925 – April 15, 2000) was an American writer and artist noted for his macabre illustrated books.

“Inspiration exists, but it has to find us working.”

-Pablo Picasso in his Cannes studio with model, 1955. Photo by Mark Shaw. (Source: Artist and Studio)

“The universe is real but you can’t see it. You have to imagine it. Once you imagine it, you can be realistic about reproducing it. ”

-Alexander Calder (July 22, 1898 – November 11, 1976) was an American sculptor and artist most famous for inventing abstract sculptures he called ” mobiles”.

Photo: Calder – Paris Studio 14 rue de la colonie – fall 1931.

‎”What works good is better than what looks good, because what works good lasts.”

-Ray Eames ((1912–1988) was an American designer, who worked in and made major contributions to modern architecture and furniture.

“I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means. What I want and what I fear.”

Joan Didion (born December 5, 1934) is an American author best known for her novels and her literary journalism.

“Why have I never been bored? For more than fifty years I have never ceased to work.”

-Henri Matisse (31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship.

“A great free joy surges through me when I work . . . with tense slashes and a few thrusts the beautiful white fields receive their color and the work is finished in a few minutes.”

Clyfford Still (November 30, 1904 – June 23, 1980) was an American painter, and one of the leading figures of Abstract Expressionism.

“In a mood of faith and hope my work goes on. A ream of fresh paper lies on my desk waiting for the next book. I am a writer and I take up my pen to write.”

-Pearl Buck (June 26, 1892 – March 6, 1973) also known by her Chinese name Sai Zhenzhju, was an American writer who spent most of her time until 1934 in China.

“Being entirely honest with oneself is a good exercise.” -Sigmund Freud (6 May 1856 – 23 September 1939), was an Austrian neurologist who founded the discipline of psychoanalysis .

“Artistically I am still a child with a whole life ahead of me to discover and create. I want something, but I won’t know what it is until I succeed in doing it.”

-Alberto Giacometti (10 October 1901, Borgonovo, Stampa – 11 January 1966, Chur) was a Swiss sculptor, painter, draughtsman, and printmaker. Above: His studio. (Photo by Ernst Scheidegger) Source: Artist and Studio.

“And now here is my secret, a very simple secret; it is only with the heart that one can see rightly, what is essential is invisible to the eye.”

-Antoine de Saint-Exupéry was an aristocrat French writer, poet and pioneering aviator. (source: Writers at Work)

“I would like the work to be non-work. This means that it would find its way beyond my preconceptions…It is the unknown quantity from which and where I want to go. As a thing, an object, it accedes to its non-logical self. It is something, it is nothing.”

-Eva Hesse (January 11, 1936 – May 29, 1970), was a German-born American sculptor, known for her pioneering work in materials such as latex, fiberglass, and plastics.

Painting sacré-coeur from the ancient rue norvins in Montmartre, Paris, (1946). Photo by Edward Clark, from the great LIFE photographers. (Source:Artist and Studio)

“To an engineer, good enough means perfect. With an artist, there’s no such thing as perfect.”

-Alexander Calder (July 22, 1898 – November 11, 1976) was an American sculptor and artist most famous for inventing mobile sculptures.(P: in his studio, 1941 © Herbert Matter, Calder Foundation.)

“If you want to have clean ideas, change them as often as your shirt.”

-Francis Picabia was a French painter, poet, and typographist, associated with both the Dada and Surrealist art movements.

“I never thought of myself as a feminist. I’m a woman, and I act upon that premise, but it was more that I was interested in my approach to materials as a woman.”

Lynda Benglis (born October 25, 1941 in Lake Charles, Louisiana) is an American sculptor known for her wax paintings and poured latex sculptures.

“I just sit at my typewriter and curse a bit.”

-P G Wodehouse is widely regarded as the greatest comic author of the 20th century.

On beginning: “Give the paint a chance. Give the brush a chance.”

-John Marin (December 23, 1870 – October 2, 1953) was an early American modernist artist. (Source: Artist and Studio)

“Writing is a question of finding a certain rhythm. I compare it to the rhythms of jazz. Much of the time life is a sort of rhythmic progression of three characters. If one tells oneself that life is like that, one feels it less arbitrary.”

-Françoise Sagan ( 1935 – 2004) – real name Françoise Quoirez – was a French playwright, novelist, and screenwriter.

When it is working, you completely go into another place, you’re tapping into things that are totally universal, completely beyond your ego and your own self. That’s what it’s all about.

-Keith Haring (1958 – 1990) was an artist and social activist whose work responded to the New York City street culture of the 1980s.

“I like to work from things that I see, whether they’re man-made or natural or a combination of the two…The things that I’m interested in have always been there.”

-Ellsworth Kelly (born May 31, 1923) is an American painter, sculptor, and printmaker associated with Hard-edge painting, Color Field painting and the Minimalist school.

“I like a canvas to breathe and be alive. Be alive is the point. And, as the limitations are something called pigment and canvas, let’s see if I can do it.”

-Lee Krasner painting “Portrait in Green.” Photo taken by Mark Patiky in 1969, from Gail Levin’s “Lee Krasner: A Biography”

“Mistakes are almost always of a sacred nature. Never try to correct them. On the contrary: rationalize them, understand them thoroughly. After that, it will be possible for you to sublimate them.”

-Salvador Dali (May 11, 1904 – January 23, 1989) was a prominent Spanish surrealist painter born in Figueres, Catalonia, Spain.

“Life itself is the most wonderful fairy tale.”
Hans Christian Andersen (Photo: in Nyhavn, close to The Royal Theatre in Copenhagen (1932)

“Art has always been the raft onto which we climb to save our sanity. I don’t see a different purpose for it now.”

-Dorothea Tanning (August 25, 1910 – January 31, 2012) was an American painter, printmaker, sculptor and writer.

“Responsibility…means that we insist on a life of meaningful work, insist that work be as meaningful as love and friendship in our lives. It means, therefore, the courage to be “different”…The difference between a life lived actively, and a life of passive drifting and dispersal of energies, is an immense difference.”

-Adrienne Rich (May 16, 1929 – March 27, 2012) was an American poet, essayist and feminist.

“One works without thinking how to work.”

-Artist Jasper Johns in his Pearl Street studio, NY, ca. 1956

“When we are mired in the relative world, never lifting our gaze to the mystery, our life is stunted, incomplete; we are filled with yearning for that paradise that is lost when, as young children, we replace it with words and ideas and abstractions – such as merit, such as past, present, and future – our direct, spontaneous experience of the thing itself, in the beauty and precision of this present moment.

Peter Matthiessen (born May 22, 1927, in New York City) is a three-time National Book Award-winning American novelist and non-fiction writer, as well as an environmental activist.

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Happy Birthday, Robert Frost (March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963) was an American poet.

“My poetry at its truest is an extension of my physical person. “

Michael McClure (born October 20, 1932) is an American poet, playwright, songwriter, and novelist. (Source: Writers At Work)

“I work in waves, because I’m impatient. Because of a certain physicality, of lack of breath from standing. It has to be done and I do take liberties I wouldn’t have taken before.”

Cy Twombly (April 25, 1928 – July 5, 2011) was an American artist well known for his large-scale, freely scribbled, calligraphic-style graffiti paintings, on solid fields of mostly gray, tan, or off-white colors. (P: His workspace photographed by David Seidner)

“I am dominated by one thing, an irresistible, burning attraction towards the abstract.”

The palette of Gustave Moreau (6 April 1826 – 18 April 1898) was a French Symbolist painter whose main emphasis was the illustration of biblical and mythological figures.

“You just go on your nerve.”

-Francis Russell “Frank” O’Hara (March 27, 1926 – July 25, 1966) was an American writer, poet and art critic. He was a member of the New York School of poetry.

“If people call me a Sunday painter I’m a Sunday painter who paints every day of the week!”
LS Lowry was a 20th-century English artist most famous for his paintings of life in the bleak industrial areas of northern England, done in muted colors and containing lots of small figures or “matchstick men”

‎”Imagination is the only key to the future. Without it none exists – with it all things are possible.”

Ida Minerva Tarbell (November 5, 1857 – January 6, 1944) was an American teacher, author and journalist. She was known as one of the leading “muckrakers” of the progressive era, work known in modern times as “investigative journalism”.

“Design, just as art, has multiple definitions; there is no single definition. Design can be art. Design can be aesthetics. Design is so simple, that’s why it is so complicated.”

Paul Rand (born Peretz Rosenbaum, August 15, 1914-November 26, 1996) was a well-known American graphic designer, best known for his corporate logo design.
(source: http://fribs.tumblr.com/)

“Most artists work all the time, they do actually, especially good artists, they work all the time, what else is there to do? I mean you do.”

-David Hockney (born 9 July 1937) is an English painter, draughtsman, printmaker, stage designer and photographer, who is based in Bridlington, Yorkshire and Kensington, London.

“There is nothing glamorous in what I do. I’m a working man. Perhaps I’m luckier than most in that I receive considerable satisfaction from doing useful work which I, and sometimes others, think is good.”

-Saul Bass (May 8, 1920 – April 25, 1996) was a graphic designer and filmmaker, best known for his design of film posters and motion picture title sequences. (P: In his office, 1970s)

“The works must be conceived with fire in the soul but executed with clinical coolness.” Joan Miró’s taboret and studio.

Joan Miró (April 20, 1893 – December 25, 1983) was a Spanish Catalan painter, sculptor, and ceramicist born in Barcelona.

“The artist must create a spark before he can make a fire and before art is born, the artist must be ready to be consumed by the fire of his own creation.”

-Auguste Rodin, was a French sculptor. P: In his atelier 1905 (source: Artistandstudio)

“One really beautiful wrist motion, that is synchronised with your head and heart, and you have it. It looks as if it were born in a minute.”

-Helen Frankenthaler (December 12, 1928 – December 27, 2011) was an American abstract expressionist painter.

Dado (1933–2010), was a Yugoslavian-born artist who spent most of his life and creative career in France.

“I think that if a man has the urge to be an artist, it is because he needs to find himself. Every writer tries to find himself through his characters, through all his writing.” – Georges Simenon (1903 –1989) was a Belgian writer. Simenon is best known for the creation of the fictional detective Maigret. (Source: Writers at Work)

“What matters in life is not what happens to you but what you remember and how you remember it.” -Gabriel García Márquez (1928) is a Colombian novelist, short-story writer, screenwriter and journalist.

Emmy Hennings (17 February 1885 – 10 August 1948) was a performer and poet . She was also the wife of celebrated Dadaist Hugo Ball.

“Feeling is something more; it’s feeling your existence. It’s not just survival. Painting is a means of feeling ”living”…Painting is the only art form except still photography which is without time.

Joan Mitchell (February 12, 1925 – October 30, 1992) was a “second generation” abstract expressionist painter. (P: Mitchell in a Paris studio, 1957- Life magazine photo by Loomis Dean)

“I refuse to confide and don’t like it when people write about art.”

Balthasar Klossowski de Rola (February 29, 1908 in Paris – February 18, 2001 in Rossinière, Switzerland), best known as Balthus, was an esteemed but controversial Polish-French modern artist. (P: 1956 LIFE MAGAZINE by Loomis Dean – shot at the Chateau de Chassy, Balthus’ studio in the Morvan, 200 miles southwest of Paris.)

Barney Rosset ((May 28, 1922 – February 21, 2012) the groundbreaking American publisher. (Excerpts of Rosset tributes via A Piece of Monologue)

Peter Hill Beard (born 22 January 1938 in New York) is a photographer, artist, diarist and writer.

“There are no rules. That is how art is born, how breakthroughs happen. Go against the rules or ignore the rules. That is what invention is about.”

American abstract expressionist painter and artist Helen Frankenthaler sitting amidst her art in her New York City studio. Photographed by Gordon Parks for LIFE magazine ca. 1956.

“Words make love with one another.” – André Breton; the French writer and poet best known as the founder of Surrealism. (At his Studio, May 1960. Photo Sabine Weiss)

John Falter (1910 – May 1982) was an American artist best known for his many cover paintings for The Saturday Evening Post.

“The secret of life is to have a task, something you devote your entire life to, something you bring everything to, every minute of the day for the rest of your life. And the most important thing is, it must be something you cannot possibly do.” -Henry Spencer Moore OM CH FBA (30 July 1898 – 31 August 1986) was an English sculptor and artist. (Photo 1980; published as an album of etchings by Gérald Cramer Condition)

Henri-Émile-Benoît Matisse (French pronunciation: [ɑ̃ʁi matis]; 31 December 1869 – 3 November 1954) was a French artist, known for his use of colour and his fluid and original draughtsmanship.

“I am for an art that is political-erotical-mystical, that does something more than sit on its ass in a museum.” -Claes Oldenburg (born January 28, 1929) is a Swedish American sculptor, best known for his public art installations typically featuring very large replicas of everyday objects. (P: in Paris, ca 1964)

‎”I paint for myself. I don’t know how to do anything else, anyway. Also I have to earn my living, and occupy myself.” – Francis Bacon (28 October 1909 – 28 April 1992), was an Irish-born British figurative painter known for his bold, graphic and emotionally raw imagery. (source: Dirty Dublin)

A corner of Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo’s studio in San Angel Inn. Photo from: Bertram D. Wolfe, Diego Rivera, New York/London, 1939.

“Dreams are often most profound when they seem the most crazy.” -Sigmund Freud (6 May 1856 – 23 September 1939), was an Austrian neurologist who founded the discipline of psychoanalysis .View of his writing desk in the study (detail), (P: by Edmund Engelman,1938, silver gelatin print)

“To be free is to have achieved your life.” -Tennessee Williams (March 26, 1911 – February 25, 1983) was an American writer who worked principally as a playwright in the American theater.

Zhang Xiaogang (simplified Chinese: 张晓刚; traditional Chinese: 張曉剛; born 1958) is a contemporary Chinese symbolist and surrealist painter.

“A guilty conscience needs to confess. A work of art is a confession.” -Albert Camus was a French-Algerian author, journalist, and philosopher of the 20th century.

“It starts with this: put your desk in the corner, and every time you sit down there to write, remind yourself why it isn’t in the middle of the room. Life isn’t a support system for art. It’s the other way around.” -Stephen King (born September 21, 1947) is an American author of contemporary horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy fiction. (P: Jill Krementz)

“It is easier to believe than to doubt.” -Gene Fowler (March 8, 1890 – July 2, 1960) was an American journalist, author and dramatist.

“I get satisfaction of three kinds. One is creating something, one is being paid for it and one is the feeling that I haven’t just been sitting on my ass all afternoon.” -William Frank Buckley, Jr. (November 24, 1925 – February 27, 2008) was an American conservative author and commentator.

“Work is life, you know, and without it, there’s nothing but fear and insecurity.” – John Lennon (9 October 1940 – 8 December 1980) was an English musician and singer-songwriter. (P; Lennon and Yoko Ono sitting on a bed writing in New York during the 70s.)

Rule I

Rule 2

Rule 3

Rule 4

Rule 5

Rule 6

Rule 7
The only rule is work.

Rule 8

Rule 9

Rule 10

“When I’m painting, I’m not aware of what I’m doing. It’s only after a get acquainted period that I see what I’ve been about. I’ve no fears about making changes for the painting has a life of its own.” – Jackson Pollock (1912 –1956) was an influential American painter and a major figure in the abstract expressionist movement.

“Act the way you’d like to be and soon you’ll be the way you act.” – Leonard Cohen ((born 21 September 1934) is a Canadian singer-songwriter, musician, poet and novelist.

‎”All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once he grows up.” -Pablo Picasso, born in Spain, was a child prodigy who was recognized as such by his art-teacher father, who ably led him along.

“If you’re not failing every now and again, it’s a sign you’re not doing anything very innovative.” – Woody Allen (born Allan Stewart Konigsberg; December 1, 1935) is an American screenwriter, director, actor, comedian, jazz musician, author, and playwright

“An original is a creation motivated by desire. Any reproduction of an originals motivated be necessity. It is marvelous that we are the only species that creates gratuitous forms. To create is divine, to reproduce is human.” – Man Ray (1890 – 1976) was an American artist who spent most of his career in Paris, France.

“It has long been an axiom of mine that the little things are infinitely the most important.” – Sir Arthur Ignatius Conan Doyle DL (1859 –1930) was a Scottish physician and writer, most noted for his stories about the detective Sherlock Holmes.

“The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.” – Dorothy Parker (1893 – 1967) was an American poet, short story writer, critic and satirist, best known for her wit, wisecracks, and eye for 20th century urban foibles.

A detail of Joe Fig’s Chuck Close: Summer 2004 (2005). Mixed media, 24 by 31by 42 inches. Image: Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, New York

“I hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, violence, or insanity to anyone, but they’ve always worked for me.” -Hunter S. Thompson takes aim at his typewriter.

“Architecture is the learned game, correct and magnificent, of forms assembled in the light. ” – Charles-Édouard Jeanneret, better known as Le Corbusier (1887 – 1965), was a Swiss architect, designer, urbanist, writer and painter, famous for being one of the pioneers of what now is called modern architecture. Photo: Le Corbusier (Charles-Édouard Jeanneret) by Ida Kar (National Portrait Gallery, London)

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Dr. Martin Luther King with Kenneth Kaunda, who later became the president of Zambia, in King’s office, Birmingham, Alabama, 1960.

“Einstein brought to the work of originality deep elements of tradition. It is only possible to discover in part how he came by it, by following his reading, his friendships, the meager record that we have. ” -Robert Oppenheimer pictured with his friend Alfred Einstein (P: 1947 by Alfred Eisenstaedt, LIFE) Surplus reading on the friendship.

“”I’m gonna make him an offer he can’t refuse.” – Marlon Brando’s character Don Corleone hard at work in The Godfather.

“Someone once told me that every minute a murder occurs, so I don’t want to waste your time, I know you want to go back to work.” British film director Alfred Hitchcock (1899 – 1980) typing a script on his typewriter (at a small bar in his apt. in the Wilshire Palms, 1939 / P: Peter Stackpole, LIFE)

“Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” -Robert Louis Balfour Stevenson ( 1850 –1894) was a Scottish novelist, poet, essayist and travel writer. His best-known books include Treasure Island, Kidnapped, and Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde.

“The second draft is on yellow paper, that’s when I work on characterizations. The third is pink, I work on story motivations. Then blue, that’s where I cut, cut, cut.” -Jacqueline Susann (1918-1974) was an American author whose most notable work was Valley of the Dolls.

‎”When I discover who I am, I’ll be free.” -Ralph Waldo Ellison (1914-1994) was an American novelist, literary critic, scholar and writer. Ellison is best known for his novel Invisible Man, which won the National Book Award in 1953.

‎”Beware of a man with manners. “– Eudora Alice Welty (1909 – 2001) was an American author of short stories and novels about the American South. Her novel The Optimist’s Daughter won the Pulitzer Prize in 1973.

“Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.” -Emil Cioran (1911–1995) was a Romanian writer, noted for his somber works in the French language (Photo by Franziska Messner Rast)

“Men like women who write. Even though they don’t say so. A writer is a foreign country.” – Marguerite Duras (1914 – 1996) was a French writer and film director.

‎”Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.” -Ernest Miller Hemingway (1899 –1961) was an American author and journalist.

‎”Don’t bother just to be better than your contemporaries or predecessors. Try to be better than yourself.”– William Cuthbert Faulkner (1897 – 1962) was an American writer and nobel prize laureate from Oxford, Mississippi.

Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Dr. Martin Luther King with Kenneth Kaunda, who later became the president of Zambia, in King’s office, Birmingham, Alabama, 1960.

“An intellectual says a simple thing in a hard way. An artist says a hard thing in a simple way.” – Henry Charles Bukowski (1920 –1994) was an American poet, novelist and short story writer. His writing was influenced by the social, cultural and economic ambience of his home city of Los Angeles.

“The future is unwritten.” Punk legend, Joe Strummer, leader of The Clash (1952) Photo Still from Julien Temple’s documentary The Future Is Unwritten, 2007

‎”Art is much less important than life, but what a poor life without it.” American painter, printmaker and editor Robert Motherwell (1915 –1991) one of the youngest of the New York School (a phrase he coined). Photo: In Motherwell’s Greenwich Village studio c. 1943 (credit: Peter A. Juley & Son Collection, Smithsonian)

‎”A woman should live with two men; one more a lover and the other more a friend.” -Leonor Fini (1908 – 1996) was an Argentine surrealist painter.

“Je suis comme ça. Ou j’oublie tout de suite ou je n’oublie jamais.”
Translation: “I’m like that. Either I forget right away or I never forget. ” -Samuel Beckett’s bookshelves in the study of his apartment at the Boulevard St Jacques in Paris. (Photo by John Minihan; a rare glimpse inside the writer’s world)

German- born French photographer Gisèle Freund’s portrait of James Joyce, 1939.

“The thing that makes a creative person is to be creative and that is all there is to it.” -Edward Albee, American playwright (Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf), at work in his Greenwich Village apartment, 1963 (via Academy of Achievement © Bettmann/CORBIS)

“A writer is liked if he is loyal to the system. But it is the writer’s duty in a sense to be disloyal…He can speak up in many ways; the best way is to write a book.” – Alan Sillitoe (1928– 2010) was an English writer and one of the “Angry Young Men” of the 1950s. Photo: Mark Gerson, October 1958 (NPG)

“I suppose I have a really loose interpretation of “work,” because I think that just being alive is so much work at something you don’t always want to do. The machinery is always going. Even when you sleep.” – Andy Warhol.

Emile Zola, a French writer, in L’Evénement on the Salon of 1866, portrait by Edouard Manet, a French Realist/Impressionist artist (Paris, Mus. d’Orsay).

Jørn Utzon AC (1918 – 2008) was a Danish architect, most notable for designing the Sydney Opera House in Australia. (Photo: AFP/ Ulf Nilsen/Scanpi)

“I paint for myself. I don’t know how to do anything else, anyway. Also I have to earn my living, and occupy myself. ” Francis Bacon in his studio, 1984.

‎”Comic art is just different. It’s art on its own terms.” RIP, JOE SIMON (1913 – today 12.16.2011) was an American comic book writer, artist, editor, and publisher. He was the first editor-in-chief at Marvel Comics where he gave Stan Lee his start in the business. He was Jack Kirby’s longtime creative partner and together they created Captain America.

‎”I became a journalist partly so that I wouldn’t ever have to rely on the press for my information.” – RIP CHRISTOPHER HITCHENS (1949-2011)

Arthur Evelyn St. John Waugh (1903 – 1966), known as Evelyn Waugh, was an English writer of novels, travel books and biographies. He’s best remembered for his novel, Brideshead Revisited… (Photo:by Yousuf Karsh, 1964 – bromide print (NPG, London)

“Life can only be understood backwards; but it must be lived forward.” Søren Kierkegaard, Danish philosopher -(Portrait of Kierkegaard at his high desk, Luplau Janssen).

Lee Krasner (1908 – 1984) was an influential American abstract expressionist painter.

“To live life well is to express life poorly; if one expresses life too well, one is living it no longer.” Gaston Bachelard (1884 – 1962) was a French philosopher and poet, best known for his unique work The Poetics of Space (1958).

“Those who dare to fail miserably can achieve greatly.” John F. Kennedy, President of the United States. Photo: JFK at Harvard, c. 1939

Franz Schubert, Austrian composer and undisputed master of the Lied genre – Illustration by Bacchi (LIFE archives)

Contents of a desk from the day that Albert Einstein died on April 18, 1955. The photos were shot by LIFE photojournalist Ralph Morse who used bottles of scotch to bribe people for access to Einstein’s life. (photo: Ralph Morse The Day Einstein Died)

“If we had failed to pursue the facts as far as they led, we would have denied the public any knowledge of an unprecedented scheme of political surveillance and sabotage.” (on Watergate) -Katharine Meyer Graham (1917– 2001) was an American publisher. Graham at her desk at the Washington Post.

Ennio Morricone (928) is an Italian composer and conductor. His scores have been included in over 20 award-winning films as well as several symphonic and choral pieces. Morricone is most famous for his work in the Spaghetti Westerns directed by his friend Sergio Leone, including A Fistful of Dollars (1964), For a Few Dollars More (1965), The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (1966), and Once Upon a Time in the West (1968).

British poet Stevie Smith: Sep. 20, 1902 – 1971. *Photo: Jorge (‘J.S.’) Lewinski, July 1966 – bromide print on card mount (NPG, London)

Sir Ahmed Salman Rushdie is an Indian-British novelist and essayist

‎”Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement.” – C.S. Lewis, Irish-born fantasist author of the Narnia books, medievalist scholar at Oxford, and lay theologian & Christian apologist ; at his desk.

“If I have any justification for having lived it’s simply, I’m nothing but faults, failures and so on, but I have tried to make a good pair of shoes. There’s some value in that” ― American playwright Arthur Miller (1915 – 2005)

Giorgio de Chirico, Italian Surrealist artist – in his studio in Rome, 1974 – w. Bagni Misteriosi

Swedish author Selma Lagerlöf in her workroom at home in the residence Mårbacka, 1933

“Eighty percent of success is showing up. ” Woody Allen’s desk. Photography by Scott Frances (via: Architectural Digest)

1959, Florence, Italy — The legendary fashion designer, Emilio Pucci, with examples of his work. — Image by © David Lees/Corbis

André Breton’s studio, May 1960. Photo Sabine Weiss

“Good things happen to those who hustle. ” Anaïs Nin (February 1903 – 1977) was a French-Cuban author, based at first in France and later in the United States.


“Many of the great achievements of the world were accomplished by tired and discouraged men who kept on working.” – Unknown.


Born Nov. 26, 1922 (d. 2000), Charles M. Schulz was the creator of one of the most popular comic strips in the world.: The Peanuts…

Eugène Ionesco, French-Romanian absurdist playwright: Nov. 26, 1909 – 1994 (source: 12 bent)

There’s a line in the picture where he snarls, ‘Nobody tells me what to do.’ That’s exactly how I’ve felt all my life. -Marlon Brando, Jr. (1924 – July 2004) was an American movie star and political activist.

Walter Elias “Walt” Disney (1901 – 1966) was an American film producer, director, screenwriter, voice actor, animator, entrepreneur, entertainer, international icon, and philanthropist, well-known for his influence in the field of entertainment during the 20th century.

Jean-Louis “Jack” Lebris de Kerouac (March 12, 1922 – October 21, 1969) was an American novelist and poet. He is considered a literary iconoclast and, alongside William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg, a pioneer of the Beat Generation.

French satirist, philosopher, and social revolutionary François-Marie Arouet, better known as Voltaire (born in Paris).

Richard Ford (born February 16, 1944) is a Pulitzer Prize-winning American novelist and short story writer.

Stanisław Lem was a Polish writer of science fiction, philosophy and satire. He was named a Knight of the Order of the White Eagle.

Yukio Mishima; the pen name of Kimitake Hiraoka (平岡 公威 Hiraoka Kimitake (January 14, 1925 – November 25, 1970), a Japanese author, poet, playwright, actor and film director, also remembered for his ritual suicide by seppuku after a failed coup d’état.

“I thought the ranch would be good for me because nothing can grow here and I wouldn’t be able to use up my time gardening.” Georgia O’Keeffe Architectural Digest

“The days you work are the best days.” Artist Georgia O’Keeffe (1887). Her space at Ghost Ranch, Taos New Mexico.

“I’m getting so slow at my work it makes me despair, but… I’m increasingly obsessed by the need to render what I experience, and I’m praying that I’ll have a few more good years left to me…” Claude Monet, a founder of French impressionist painting, in his salon atelier at Ginevrey, c, 1915.

Monet as he retouches the Arch of Flowers, 1923. (source: Monet Painting)

‎”Here is a lesson in creative writing. First rule: Do not use semicolons. They are transvestite hermaphrodites representing absolutely nothing. All they do is show you’ve been to college.”– Kurt Vonnegut.

John Hoyer Updike (1932 –2009) was an American novelist, poet, short story writer, art critic, and literary critic.

Arno Schmidt (1914-1979) was a German author and translator (pictured with his cat).

“Work is love made visible. And if you cannot work with love but only with distaste, it is better that you should leave your work and sit at the gate of the temple and take alms of those who work with joy.” -Khalil Gibran

Hunter Stockton Thompson (1937 – 2005): American journalist and author who wrote The Rum Diary (1998), Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1971) and Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail ’72 (1973). He is credited as the creator of Gonzo journalism.

Carson McCullers. An American writer of novels, short stories, and two plays, as well as essays. (1917– 1967).

“You cannot teach creativity—how to become a good writer. But you can help a young writer discover within himself what kind of writer he would like to be.” -Mario Vargas Llosa

Simone De Beauvoir. French Existentialist, Writer, and Social Essayist. 1908-1986.

Jean Cocteau; French poet, novelist, dramatist, designer, playwright, artist and filmmaker.

“It is your work in life that is the ultimate seduction.”– Pablo Picasso

Andy Warhol at work.

Dylan Thomas’s Desk in Writing Shed (image: Corbis)

Jack Nicholson’s typewriter and desk from Stanley Kubrick’s “The Shining”.

A photograph of Knoll and his wife and partner Florence, flanked by designers Herbert Matter (left) and Harry Bertoia, in 1952.

CBS Executive Offices; NYC 1954 as decked in Knoll pieces.

Photo of British writer Somerset Maugham, taken in Nice, France, in 1939.

Portrait of Russian novelist, philosopher & mystic Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910), in his study at home in Yasnaya Polyana. 1901

Elmore Leonard’s Desk (Source: NPR)

“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. ” Steve Jobs at his home office (source: Mobiles DNA)

“Good design is making something intelligible and memorable. Great design is making something memorable and meaningful.” Dieter Rams at his desk.

“Hemingway hated me. I sold 200 million books, and he didn’t. Of course most of mine sold for 25 cents, but still… you look at all this stuff with a grain of salt.” Mickey Spillane,  an American author of crime novels, at his desk.

Electronic recording studio designed & built by Raymond Scott, 1950s (New York)

deKooning’s Studio ; 1989

Littered desk in study belonging to Albert Einstein.
Location: Princeton, NJ, US
Date taken: April 1955
Photographer: Ralph Morse/Life Magazine

‎”If a cluttered desk signs a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?” the birthday + desk of sci-fi’s Ray Bradbury.

May Ray’s various Ateliers (via: Mondo Blogo)

“Art to me is an anecdote of the spirit, and the only means of making concrete the purpose of its varied quickness and stillness.” Mark Rothko in his East Hampton studio, NY, 1964

Louise Bourgeois in her studio, circa 1946. Photo: Louise Bourgeois Archive.

RIP, Lucian Freud. His studio; as his work was autobiographical; space inside space. “Lucian Freud: L’Atelier”; a magic video…

Not an easy feat; the translator Svetlana Geier (subject of the documentary “The Woman With the 5 Elephants; NYT review here) translating most of Dostoyevsky’s novels into German.

“An artist is always alone – if he is an artist. No, what the artist needs is loneliness.” -Henry Miller (December 26, 1891 – June 7, 1980) was an American novelist and painter.

Faulkner’s typewriter.

Old school Anna Wintour

Hey you, work harder. (source: Skinny Ships)

“I work in waves.” Cy Twombly talks to Tate director Nicholas Serota http://t.co/ofNDbir

Ray Eames Desk: 1976. (see source)

“A prudent question is one-half of wisdom. “ Francis Bacon’s studio with his last painting, possibly the beginnings of a portrait of George Dyer, on the easel, photographed by Perry Ogden in 1992

A few of Tina Roth Eisenberg’s aka swissmiss favorite tools;via her desk post.

(André Kertész, Man who likes books [1963] via @invisible stories)

Where it all begins. The student. The desk. The classroom (via swissmiss)

In Giacomettis Studio (via: Another Something and Co.)

John and Paul at work.

Madlib at home. (via: youmightfindyourself)

Picasso in his Studio.

Saul Bellow; at his typewriter.

Professional Dark Rooms; Richard Nicholson

Who Invented the Desk? Artists Gareth Long & Liam Gillick.

“Shaken, not stirred.” Ian Fleming, from Goldeneye, at his desk.

John Cheever.

Lee “Scratch” Perry at his Black Ark studio in Jamaica (via Austin Kleon’s Tumblr)

Authors and Typewriters via The Guardian.

Daphne DuMaurier at her desk. Photograph: Hans Wild/Time Life Pictures/Getty Images

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