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Art Matters

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4.22  ·  Rating details ·  7,804 ratings  ·  1,092 reviews
Combining Neil Gaiman's extraordinary words with Chris Riddell's deft and striking illustrations, Art Matters will inspire its readers to seize the day in the name of art.

Neil Gaiman once said that 'the world always seems brighter when you've just made something that wasn't there before'. This little book is the embodiment of that vision.

Drawn together from speeches, poems and
...more
Kindle Edition, 112 pages
Published September 6th 2018 by Headline
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Rob The book contains speeches that Gaiman has given throughout his life, including a commencement address and a plea for funding libraries. The target…moreThe book contains speeches that Gaiman has given throughout his life, including a commencement address and a plea for funding libraries. The target audience would have been adults when he wrote the speeches. I think the best answer is something Gaiman says in the book. He warns people to let children enjoy reading and not force them into something they are not ready for. The example he gives is that his young daughter was reading RL Stine, and he suggested she read Stephen King. It did not go over well, apparently. Children may like this book, but I think he has other, more suitable books for children. I think Gaiman might suggest that children should have access to lots of books, and if they are curious enough or interested enough they will read it. So, it could probably go into a children's library, by that standard.... Hope that long, rambling answer helps.(less)

Community Reviews

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Lisa
Sep 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The answer is not 42 after all. The answer to life, the universe and everything is:

MAKE GOOD ART.

Which of course may well be what Douglas Adams did, hitchhiking his way through the universe in a bombastic show of creative power. So 42 and "MAKE GOOD ART" could be seen as synonyms.

A mutated boa constrictor is harming you? Time for making good art.

This collection of passionate essays by Neil Gaiman and outrageously funny drawings by Chris Riddell will be my "Annoy-E
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Sean Barrs the Bookdragon
"Make good art. I’m serious."

This is a collection of four essays, each forceful and energetic, that directly address why it is so important to read and write and, more importantly, they impress upon you why children should be doing it too.

This is not new material but has instead been published in various magazines and online publications, some of them even appeared in The View From the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction.

The essays are as followed:

1. Credo
2. Why Our Future Depends on Libraries, Reading and Dayd
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Nat K
Oct 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Anyone who wants to be inspired!

Oh my goodness, I l💕ve this book! I read it on the work commute home and am SO impressed with it. One of those books that makes you believe that good things can happen.

Imagine a world devoid of beauty. Without colour. No artworks to adorn walls or office desks. No words of wisdom to inspire or incite. Imagine a world without books!

Art matters because it soothes the soul, keeps the blood pumping through our veins, makes us think. It connects us.

Didn’t someone o
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Ellie
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I needed this. Also Chris Riddell could stab me with a pencil and I'd thank him.
Seemita
Nov 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Seemita by: Neil Gaiman
When I walk down a street I take often, I don’t need telling where the hump is or where the manhole splays. But even so, on days the street light doesn’t work, I feel a pinch; as if the little streak of light was a guide and despite being on a street I was well acquainted with, I need occasional help, a spurt of inspiration, a wise prelude.

‘Art Matters’ is that little streak of light.

Gaiman has long been an author who unspools the complex doings of my mind and weaves them back together/>‘Art
...more
Bradley
Sep 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Half illustrations, half art-on-art, this little gem of a book is just about perfect for anyone who appreciates art and/or makes it. :)

I won't say the advice is new but it is very emphatic and heartfelt, so you're not hearing any complaints from this corner.

Best advice ever? Have fun. Next best advice? Make good art. Or maybe I have those two reversed. Doesn't matter. It's all good advice.

And above all, when everything goes wrong, STILL make good art.

Why? Because it helps you through the har
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Heidi The Reader
Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell have created a manifesto for readers, librarians and content creators. This little book celebrates everything having to do with reading, freedom of information and ideas, and how to start creating the life of your dreams, even if you don't know where to start.

"The world always seems brighter when you've just made something that wasn't there before."

I feel like this should be required reading — especially the parts about how to respond to intellectual disagree/>"The
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Trish
Nov 25, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Neil Gaiman once said that 'the world always seems brighter when you've just made something that wasn't there before'. This little book is the embodiment of that vision.
(from the blurp)

Neil Gaiman and Chris Riddell have teamed up a number of times before and make a great team. Both wholly embrace enthusiastic fans, fan art, any art, as well as charities. Therefore, they created this little book in which Chris Riddell illustrates speeches, poems, manifestos and comments by Neil Gaiman about the importance of libraries
...more
Veronique
Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: stars-4-0, 2018
"Be bold. Be rebellious. Choose Art. It matters.”

To many, this tiny book is going to seem very expensive for what it is. I can understand that. On the other hand, I totally buy what Gaiman and Riddell proposed to do, defend the Arts and Freedom of Speech in this crazy world of ours!

The book itself has a simplicity, both in words and drawing style, that can attract Everyone. In that light it reminded me of how Fairy Tales (the original ones from oral tradition) were aimed for everyone too, from
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Robin Bonne
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A reprint of an essay that I believe I previously read in The View from the Cheap Seats.
Asha Seth
Gaiman says, "Make Good Art. I'm serious."
I say, "Read more Gaiman. I'm serious."
.
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This is a cute little book with Neil Gaiman's advice on reading, writing, following your dreams, importance of libraries and librarians, why kids should read, and respecting art, and the illustrator's endeavor into transforming those pieces into sketches.
I thought of doing a picture review so readers get a hint of what to expect from this tiny little enchanter of a book. Obviously, these are pieces that stuck with me. The book's got a lot more to l
...more
Aoife
Sep 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: a5, a2, 2018, september
A very quick read (I just read this in work, don't tell anyone) featuring some of Neil Gaiman's wisest words paired with Chris Riddell's fantastic illustrations. Neil's advice basically boils down to 'do the thing that only you can do, and do it well' and it's a wonderful read. Buy one for everyone you know.

(He also loves libraries and librarians, and they're cousins to bookstores. So I feel like he loves us too.)


I don't know that it's an issue for anybody but me, but/>I
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Ashley
Oct 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Come ON people !
Star Rating: 1,000,000 (5) STARS!

ART MATTERS
Because Your Imagination Can Change The World

“I suggest that reading fiction, reading for pleasure, is one of the most important things one can do.”


I want to shout my love for and the the importance of this book from the rooftops. This book is everything .

Please if you do read this based upon on my review I’d really love to hear/ see your feedback. I’m just blown away.

PLEASE if/>/>
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Neil R. Coulter
I've still not really enjoyed anything by Neil Gaiman, and I still feel bad about that, because everyone who's anything like me regards Gaiman as one of the literary greats of our time, maybe even of all time. I feel like someday I'll connect with something by Gaiman; I really want to, but so far, I haven't.

Anyway, reading Art Matters felt to me a little bit like reading a long greeting card from Gaiman. What it says is generally true, but pithy and not particularly original or inspiring. A
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Steve
Jul 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
An upbeat call to arms - for libraries and reading (and empathy) and writing and experimenting and trying (and failing) and going your own way and not being bound by others' rules and expectations.... All assembled in a nice (slender) little volume of previously published Gaiman-wisdom, neatly packaged, and nicely illustrated. If you've read The View From the Cheap Seats, you won't find much new in here, other than some creative and accessible and free-spirited presentation and packaging, and that's O ...more
Julie
Jan 06, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
I chose to read a long with the printed book, while listening to the audiobook version and found that the audiobook is expanded, especially in the section titled, "Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming." So, I recommend you listen to the audio version to hear in full all that Gaiman has to say and the printed book to also appreciate Riddell's illustrations.

My favorite quotes:
"Libraries are places to go to find information."
Paraphrased: Libraries are plac
...more
Vivek Tejuja
Oct 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It has been established the world over (if not, then it should be) that Neil Gaiman is one of the most prolific writers that we have, and we must never forget that. In fact, we must cherish what we have every single day and celebrate him by reading more of him, but obviously, day after day.

Art Matters is a collection of his short essays (all previously published individually and collectively in The View from the Cheap Seats) about art, reading, libraries, and why all of it is so important even
...more
Lauren
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Gaiman and Riddell can do no wrong in my eyes. Such a perfect team. A sweet, inspirational set of short essays, illustrated by Riddell. Loved it.
Rod Brown
One of those little overpriced gift books (thank goodness for the library!) that takes about 15 minutes to read. Chris Riddell provides lots of nice spot illustrations for quotes and excerpts from Neil Gaiman about the value of books, reading, libraries, librarians, creativity, and freedom of speech. These are all sentiments I can get behind.
Amber
Feb 05, 2019 rated it really liked it
“A Library is a place of safety, a haven from the world. It’s a place with librarians in it. We need to teach our children to read and to enjoy reading. We need libraries. We need books. We need literate citizens.”

Seriously makes me feel blessed to work at a library. Such beautiful words. I was obviously biased to this section of the book. But I thought that all in all there was some very insightful tidbits in here that were complemented beautifully by Chris Riddell’s sketches.
Kristen
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2018
A hard one to rate -- for the most part I really liked Gaiman's words but the drawings turned me off. There's one that struck me as really Islamaphobic right near the beginning, and that kind of ruined the rest for me. If it had been just that one drawing that looked bad, I might've been able to set my reaction to that one aside. If other drawings had depicted folks who seemed Muslim or at least of many different backgrounds in as celebratory a way as all the other white folks represented here, ...more
Angela Magic Art
Really really good! Its Neil Gaiman inspirational art and creativity short essays. How could I not like it!? Also with Chris Riddell's amazing drawings! I didn't give this 5 stars the first time around was because I didn't realize that I have read most of these already. Make Good Art, I have read and listened to many times, and Building A Chair I have also read before, and some of the Library Essays. The only part that was new to me was the Freedom of Speech sections in the beginning.-Which I lo ...more
Jerrie (redwritinghood)
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is a small but powerful little book that offers some great inspiration. One of my resolutions for the new year is to push myself more on creative projects. I just often feel that my vision far exceeds my skills. This book teaches, however, not to make those assumptions, that not knowing often leads to the best results.
Tamsien West (Babbling Books)
Feb 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
A perfect combination of inspiring words for creatives and beautiful illustrations by Chris Riddell.
Maria
Jan 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
“Life is sometimes hard. Things go wrong, in life and in love and in business and in friendship and in health and in all the other ways life can go wrong. And when things get tough, this is what you should do… MAKE GOOD ART.”

There is no doubt in my mind that “Art Matters” is the book equivalent of a rainbow. Not only is it visually beautiful, something we can thank the talented Chris Riddell for, but also marvellously hopeful, and that is all on the incomparable Neil Gaiman.
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Sangeetha Ramachandran
Aug 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
"We have an obligation to read for pleasure. If others see us reading, we show that reading is a good thing. We have an obligation to support libraries, to protest closure of libraries. If you do not support libraries you are silencing the voices of the past and you are damaging the future"

This book arrived as a birthday present and what a wonderful book to receive as a birthday gift!! It look thirty minutes to read this little number and I savored it like I had been on a long fast. It is very
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Erika B. (SOS BOOKS)
Feb 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: inspire-me
“Fiction builds empathy. Fiction is something you build up from twenty-six letters and a handful of punctuation marks, and you, and you alone, using your imagination, create a world, and people it and look out through other eyes. You're being someone else, and when you return to your own world, you're going to be slightly changed.”
Monean
Aug 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The art book was hands down outstanding!
Arcci
Aug 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
I was trying to focus on reviewing only fiction books on my Goodreads because I consume A LOT of books for work (mostly non fiction), but I can't help but give a little nod to Neil Gaiman and all the life lessons crammed into this short book.

I think Art Matters is a book that every artist should have, especially for the inevitable rainy days. As a writer myself (with very academic, VERY Asian parents), I've psyched myself out too many times about the path that I'm taking. This gave me the added
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Muneera
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
Short but wonderfully insightful. Everyone should read this, if only to reinforce existing ideas on the importance of art. I especially love Gaimen’s arguement against the notion of “escapism”, that really there’s nothing wrong with it. He touches on why literacy is the answer to all our questions, why fiction is just as useful as nonfiction, why reading simply put can change our lives for the better. I loved it. I listened to the audiobook and it was 50 minutes well-spent.
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“It is easy to pretend that nobody can change anything, that society is huge and the individual is less than nothing. But the truth is individuals make the future, and they do it by imagining that things can be different.” 24 likes
“The world always seems brighter when you've just made something that wasn't there before” 22 likes
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