a story lives forever
Sign in
Form submission failed!

Stay signed in

Recover your password?
Form submission failed!

Web of Stories Ltd would like to keep you informed about our products and services.

Please tick here if you would like us to keep you informed about our products and services.

I have read and accepted the Terms & Conditions.

Please note: Your email and any private information provided at registration will not be passed on to other individuals or organisations without your specific approval.

Video URL

You must be registered to use this feature. Sign in or register.


Art is my addiction


Subjectivity of art: 'Never close your mind to anything'
Brian Sewell Writer
Comments (0) Please sign in or register to add comments

It's not a quantifiable discipline in any way, it's not a precise discipline, and your response to some painters will be much stronger than to others. Some painters who have great reputations like Watteau, for example, for me, I... I don't know where the magic lies; I've never seen it. I still can't see it. Other painters whom I puzzled over when I was younger I can now look at with much greater perception. And that's just a matter of never closing your mind to anything.

I do close my mind to music. I listen to the music... I get the most enjoyment out of the music that I've always listened to. I don't want to listen to anything new. I don't want to dig up the obscurites of Donizetti... I've never heard that, I knew it existed but: must go and see it? No, no, no. It'll be bad tum-ti-tum-ti-tum stuff and you're just ticking it off on the list. No - I want to go and see Rosenkavalier for the 55th time.

But pictures are a different matter. Pictures - I'm always prepared to look again. That's where my life is.

Born in England, Brian Sewell (1931-2015) was considered to be one of Britain’s most prominent and outspoken art critics. He was educated at the Courtauld Institute of Art and subsequently became an art critic for the London Evening Standard; he received numerous awards for his work in journalism. Sewell also presented several television documentaries, including an arts travelogue called The Naked Pilgrim in 2003. He talked candidly about the prejudice he endured because of his sexuality.

Listeners: Christopher Sykes

Christopher Sykes is an independent documentary producer who has made a number of films about science and scientists for BBC TV, Channel Four, and PBS.

Tags: Der Rosenkavalier, Antoine Watteau, Jean-Antoine Watteau, Domenico Gaetano Maria Donizetti

Duration: 1 minute, 25 seconds

Date story recorded: 2008

Date story went live: 28 June 2012