“The creative habit is like a drug. The particular obsession changes, but the excitement, the thrill of your creation lasts.”

— Henry Moore

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“Well, some of these old films I feel now that I was too impressed with movies I had seen and I only learned later on in my career that it was better not to refer to other movies but to refer to experiences you had on your own. The new films that were not really quoting other movies, I think I was happy with now in hindsight.”

— Wim Wenders, Collider

Franz Kafka (right) with Max Brod’s younger brother, Otto, at the Castel Toblino near Trento, Italy, 1909
Franz Kafka (right) with Max Brod’s younger brother, Otto, at the Castel Toblino near Trento, Italy, 1909

Restlessness. I finished reading Stephen King‘s Cell last week, and have had difficulty picking up (or concentrating on) anything since. I have works by Marguerite Duras, Robert Seethaler, and a very promising biography of Vincent Van Gogh all waiting in the wings, but none have quite made it onto the bedside table.

Instead, I have been enjoying a number of shorter pieces. Among them, John Banville‘s rather glowing review of Reiner Stach‘s Kafka: The Early Years translated by Shelley Frisch (despite being the first in a three-volume series, it was published last) • The Economist has also published a review of Kafka: The Early Years • Paul Binding on Karl Ove Knausgaard • The Rise of Dystopian FictionThe 1910s-1920s artwork of William FaulknerAnd a new study suggests that immersing oneself in art, music, and nature might increase one’s life expectancy (life expectancy aside, it sounds like a good way to live as far as I’m concerned)

 

 

“Art and religion have the same origin. Art first, or religion first? Maybe consciousness first! Consciousness always comes with religious feeling and artistic identification. It’s the same origin. Art always helps religion; it became an inseparable phenomenon when human beings gained consciousness. Later, it separated to religion and art. I want to put it back together now, this artistic expression that contains religious feeling.”

— Hiroshi Sugimoto, Interview Magazine

“[…] Dostoevsky wrote fiction about the stuff that’s really important. He wrote fiction about identity, moral value, death, will, sexual vs. spiritual love, greed, freedom, obsession, reason, faith, suicide. And he did it without ever reducing his characters to mouthpieces or his books to tracts. His concern was always what it is to be a human being—that is, how to be an actual person someone whose life is informed by values and principles, instead of just an especially shrewd kind of self-preserving animal.”

— David Foster Wallace, ‘Joseph Frank’s Dostoevsky’