Untitled, # 114 by Etel Adnan

Having already established herself as an important poet, academic and essayist, Adnan began painting at the age of 34. “Painting just happened,” she explains. “I didn’t know I would become a painter; I didn’t go to art school. When I was teaching the philosophy of art I had access to artists and materials, so I began to paint, and people I trusted liked what I did.” If painting came relatively late to Adnan, the kind of recognition she now has as a painter came even later, when she was already in her eighties.

...Adnan... feels ambivalent about suddenly becoming one of its rising stars. The art market, for one thing, dismays her: “Some collectors don’t even look at the art they own. It is not about art any more, it is about ego – ‘I own ten Picassos’. So what! I would rather have one reproduction and look at it than than ten sitting in the bank.”
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