Abstract expressionist painter Jasper Johns turns 82 today. I thought it would be nice to include him in gold week, and even though the painting above is titled ‘White Flag’ it still looks gold to me. The New York times wrote a nice piece about Johns back in 2008, I especially loved this quote regarding the art world.
Unlike so many contemporary artists producing in today’s overheated art market, Mr. Johns relies neither on dozens of assistants nor a computer to make his creations. He executes his work by hand. “It’s a different art world from the one I grew up in,” he said, relaxing in his living room in a pair of khaki shorts, a light blue shirt and sandals. “Artists today know more. They are aware of the market more than they once were. There seems to be something in the air that art is commerce itself.
“I haven’t really been a part of it, although I’m sure in some way I am. It just doesn’t interest me.”
Asked what influence he feels he may have had on those young artists, Mr. Johns paused. “To me,” he said, “self-description is a calamity.”