Art Works Blog

Notable Quotable

"Addressing improvisational music, which is considered jazz and the non-improvisational music, which is considered classical, I would say that the big difference for me was to be able to interpret what was already composed and written. How do you interpret it? Do you make this note short or...
"I know what improvisation gives you. It gives you freedom of expression. And most people, even if you're a classical musician and play in an orchestra and so forth, and say that you don't want to improvise, I know deep down inside of you, you would like to improvise. It's like...
"I have found that many people think that in order for something to be Native it has to use the same language that has been used for the past 50 years. It has to have a buffalo or an arrowhead on it to qualify it as Native. We have been pulling from the same well of artistic language for so...
"Laughter is the human condition much more than sorrow and tears and suffering. Even at the worst possible time of your life, people are funny. And that's what gives you hope." -- Luis Alberto Urrea Luis Urrea is just one of the newest members of our Big Read family. Visit the NEA...
"If you ask me now what punk is, I would say it's the free space. It's a spot where new ideas can be presented without the requirement of profit, which is what largely steers most sorts of creative offerings in our culture. Some of the most brilliant people I ever met in my life...
“I think that the role of an artist is not just to perform, but it's to convey something to bring communities together, and to tell a universal story through the arts.” -- Laurie Rubin Click here for the full Art Talk with Laurie Rubin. Want to hear more from singers? Check out our...
"Jazz is indescribable. It's not a genre, it's not a style. It's the language of the spirit. It's a behavior. Jazz equals courage and creativity. Jazz is the creative process, it's a human necessity for discovering. The greatest tool to end racism has been jazz. Blacks and...
"...[I]t's just finding that human connection that all of us are a part of. We are all connected, so we all have the same wants and needs and desires for ourselves and for our children, our grandchildren, and if you go back far enough, we all come from a rural background. Every single one...
"When I [was] four or five years, I started to play on this instrument, [the cimbalom.] But if you’re not studying the instrument, you can lose a lot. Even today... I take the hammer and every day make the exercise [of playing]." -- Nicolae Feraru, 2013 NEA National Heritage Fellow...
Video of Julia Alvarez - 2009 National Book Festival "Nothing human is alien to the pen of a novelist. And when we read, nothing human is alien to us either." —Julia Alvarez, speaking at the 2009 National Book Festival Love literature? See which authors will be speaking this weekend...

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