Our high school teachers weren’t going far enough when they spoke of the symbol as one artistic device among others: the symbol is the very stuff of art.

J. F. Martel, Reclaiming Art in the Age of Artifice

If the majority of aesthetic works fails to astonish us, then, it may have something to do with the ingrained insensitivity that is part and parcel of contemporary life. It may also have something to do with the fact that art, as Solzhenitsyn said so eloquently, is constantly being put to uses that are at odds with its essence.

Reclaiming Art in the Age of Artifice, J. F. Martel

To have reached the age of forty without ever handling a brush or fiddling with a pencil, to have regarded with mature eye the painting of pictures of any kind as a mystery, to have stood agape before the chalk of the pavement artist, and then suddenly to find oneself plunged in the middle of a new and intense form of interest and action with paints and palettes and canvases, and not to be discouraged by results, is an astonishing and enriching experience.

Winston Churchill, from Painting as a Pastime, via Draw Paint Academy