Weening your work

From Bookforum, Sept/Oct/Nov 2006; review of Writings on Art by Mark Rothko, by Harry Cooper:

"This urge to control meaning and reception drove Rothko almost to distraction: Rebuffing the Whitney's desire to purchase his work in 1952, he proclaimed his 'deep sense of responsibility for the life my pictures will lead out in the world.'

As far as my work goes, I tend to follow more the sentiment of St. Francis Xavier when he said, Give me a child until they are the age of seven, and then they may be put in the hands of anyone.

That is to say; raise up your painting in the way that it should go, and in the end it will not depart from it.

Invest heavily in the nurturing and quality of your work while it is in your hands, and it should not disappoint you when it reaches the world wider than our studios.

Loose an immature painting upon the world, however, and you may regret it, wishing for just a bit more time to refine your aesthetic progeny.

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