We all need to deal with pressure, de Pury says.
Simon de Pury: Listen. We all need to live with pressure. And I think it’s good for an artist as well to deal with some pressure. And what you see is that, you know, when an artist has great commercial success it is a double-edged sword. Because if an artist only produces for the market and loses his creative edge, he loses everything. He loses the essence of his work itself. And so some artists have creatively died because they just went on repeating and repeating the same thing just because it was working. The true great artists are those who constantly challenge themselves and go on, move on and reinvent themselves constantly. I mean one of the greatest 20th century American artists, Frank Stella – who is vibrant now in his seventies and produces some of the best work he’s ever done – he hasn’t sat still one second. Whenever something was really successful and working, he moved on to the next thing and did something totally new and constantly evolved. That’s what a truly great artist does. Recorded on: 2/7/08