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Letters to a Young Artist

4.11  ·  Rating Details ·  115 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews
This pocket-sized book contains a collection of two dozen letters all commissioned from established artists to a fictitious "young artist," a recent art-school graduate who is struggling with the moral and practical implications of being an artist in New York. The "young artist" asked a selection of his heroes, "Is it possible to maintain one's integrity and freedom of tho ...more
Paperback, 96 pages
Published April 1st 2006 by Darte Publishing, LLC
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Dec 29, 2014 Joey rated it liked it
A little context: About a century ago, there was a correspondence between a student of a military academy and aspiring poet Franz Xaver Kappus with Rainer Maria Rilke, resulting in about ten letters. They came from the same military academy, so they had more to talk about than Rilke and his other young correspondents did. (Rilke was enrolled there at his father's whim after his mother had dressed him in girls' clothes and called him Sophia for the entirety of his young life, but that's another s ...more
Noah Luna
Dec 19, 2013 Noah Luna rated it it was amazing
"Letters to a Young Artist" is quite a 'different' book. It's less of a book and more of a compilation of works. The book is full of letters, from artists all over the world, directed toward young aspiring artists, or really anyone with a passion. The book has no single author for there is no story line. It's complete with letters from 23 artist, from Yoko Ono, a famous artist and musician, to Stephen Shore, a well known american photographer. The letters touch on topics such as what it means to ...more
Aug 30, 2008 Brian rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: MFAs in Visual Art
Excellent! This is a book intended for young artists currently enrolled (or having just exited from ) MFA programs. It's rare that you find yourself in the exact intended audience for a piece of writing -- that experience alone makes the reading worth it -- these are letters that are written literally to you.

The range of artists (and practices) covered by the donated letters here is interesting -- no mention is made as to how these individuals were selected, which makes the whole project a litt
Violet Luna
Jan 03, 2016 Violet Luna rated it it was amazing
I read the book, Letters to a Young Artist, a collection of 23 letters written by famous artists as they write about their struggles, achievements, and the journey they took to get where they are. People like Yoko Ono, William Pope .L, and the Guerrilla Girls all write to a fictional character, Young Artist, and try to teach the Young Artist ways to “make it” in the art world. It was extraordinary to see all the different viewpoints each artist had and to see what advice they would give to a yo ...more
Jun 21, 2014 sculptcha rated it really liked it
i loved the advice and words of wisdom and even the absurdity in these letters, i just wish there were more of them.
This one is a keeper, as in keep it in your purse, your bookbag, your car, anywhere where you need a book to remind you of the whole reason why you do art in the first place. Some of the letters within are the kind of letters that change your entire life.
Alli Inouye
Dec 08, 2008 Alli Inouye rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: my struggling artist friends
Some of the best advice I'd ever received (even indirectly):

"Find some way to give yourself a chance- and time -to experiment, take risks, play, fool around, even fail, before trying to launch a career".

Had it come earlier, I could have listened.
Aug 05, 2011 Melissa rated it it was amazing
I love this. I want my kids to have the intuitive, inquisitive, and holistic mentality attributed to artists, whether they paint, kick things, or construct formulas and binary code. I want my own copy of this.
Jun 06, 2008 Jessica rated it it was amazing
An inspirational read that helps give artist's guidance from many great mentors and reminds them they are not alone in the struggles they face. There may not be one path to get to the finish line, but that's okay.
John schlue
Feb 06, 2008 John schlue rated it it was amazing
A great insight to realizing studio practices and maintaining a positive perspective.
Apr 25, 2008 Megan marked it as to-read
Chris got me this book for my 21st birthday. He loves me.
Feb 26, 2010 Townsend rated it really liked it
A charming collection.
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