Inspiration from Sidney Nolan

Some time ago I read a book about Sidney Nolan and noted this passage as very interesting to me. The content continues to remind me about creativity .

“Painting is only worthwhile if you don’t know the outcome. When you start painting you must never know what the end product is going to be. You should  end up with something looking at you which you have never seen before. Nolan is the first to admit that not all he touches turns to gold. I must get steamed up with what I am thinking about as content before I start trying to find forms. The message, if that is not too pompous a word, is the necessary trigger for me. Finally I’ve got to start working without any forms visible in front of me, with nothing really worked out. One gradually trusts oneself to find them,you know. It’s a gamble. It’s a private kind of thing, and the public production and statement is only designed to reach other people’s inner ideas. Of course you must be ready to prepared to suffer defeat after defeat as they crop up. I am never in the position of feeling I can do anything at will. This studio has been littered with paintings I’ve thrown away, destroyed, hidden. But of course out of this comes something that one hopes is successful to ones self. And finally comes your exhibition, which I like to think of as being the sum of those paintings that I feel haven’t defeated me.”  See Nöel Barber, Conversations with painters, Collins, London 1964.

These images are examples of Sidney Nolan. Taken from his Ned Kelly series.

For more information see Sidney Nolan Ned Kelly series

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