Irish artist Jack B Yeats discusses the notion of understanding his work and the meaning of art with Eamonn Andrews.
The conversation begins with Eamonn Andrews asking Jack B Yeats how he would respond if he told him he does not understand some of his work.
Yeats is quite dismissive of striving to understand painting and says,
You could not possibly understand all of any painting of mine any more than you could understand all of the feelings of any human being.
Yeats says he dislikes the use of the word 'art' when talking about painting.
There is only one art and that is the art of living.
Painting for him is the freest occupation within the art of living.
There is no alphabets, no grammar, no rules whatever.
According to Yeats, any attempt to apply rules to the occupation of painting is a disservice to living.
Jack B Yeats has no advice to offer young painters saying that he gave up giving advice years ago. For Yeats, a painter should have no consideration for third parties.
This interview was recorded for RTÉ Radio on 10 October 1947.