Advice to young artists - 20 Artists including David Bowie, Milton Glaser, David Shrigley, Brian Eno, Michael Craig-Martin & Ray Charles give their advice to young artists.


David Shrigley

"You're on the right track if you're excited about what you're doing"

David Shrigley advises young artists to focus on making good work. He encourages focusing on projects rather than individual outcomes  and learning from your peers.

Original Source: The Louisiana Channel


Milton Glaser 

"You have to work like hell"

Art & Design giant - Milton Glaser stresses the importance of hard work and putting in your 10, 000 hours. 

Original Source: Big Think


Marina Abramović

"A great artist has to be ready to fail"

Marina Abramović tells artists to first ask themselves whether they really are artists before they try to become great artists. 


Patti Smith

"Be concerned with doing good work, and make the right choices, and protect your work"

Rock poet - Patti Smith at the Louisiana literature festival in 2012 discussing the importance of focusing on your work and building a good name, & the creative and political possibilities of living a creative life in modern society. 

Original Source: The Louisiana Channel


Yayoi Kusama

"For people following after me, I am not an art teacher for you. My wish for you is to explore yourself and find a marvelous view of life during your life"

Neil Gaiman

"Nobody has you're point of view except you"

Judy Chicago

"Stay out of the market until you have found your own voice"


Four 2014 Turner Prize Nominees give their advice to young artists. 

"Stick to your guns and enable yourself to develop" Duncan Campbell

" Be sincere" Ciara Phillips

"Believe in something, and have a sense of inquiry" Tris Vonma Mitchell

"Have a peer group, and something to help ideas move forward" James Richards


Brian Eno

"Don't get a Job - Try to leave yourself in the position where you do the things that you want to do with your time and where you take maximum advantage of whatever your possibilities are" 

Brian Eno discusses the importance of being able to devote enough time to your practice and the ways in which young artists and society as a whole can make this possible. 


David Bowie

"Never play to the Gallery"

In this interview the late, great David Bowie discusses the importance of following your own artistic vision and warns of the dangers of compromising your work to satisfy other peoples expectations.  

This is an excerpt from the 1997 documentary 'Inspirations' by Michael Apted.



"I don't entertain people who sit around for a year waiting to get inspired, that's bullshit"

 Avant-garde Irish artist: Guggi, believes that discipline is paramount in being a studio artist. He explains how he never gives up on a painting once he has started it - working through problems until the painting is resolved. 

Original Source: Big Think


Grayson Perry

"Turn up on time, be nice, and put in the hours"

Grayson Perry gives some good natured & straightforward advice to new art students. 


Michael Simpson

"Don't be afraid of the history of art"

British painter - Michael Simpson advises young artists not to be fearful or dismissive of art history, to keep going, and to try and believe in themselves. 

Original Source: The Louisiana Channel


Laurie Anderson

"Be loose"

Jim Dunkley

"Why don't you give up?"

A further note from Jim Dunkley: 

"This is a written piece of fiction but does reflect a prevalent attitude to the role of an artist, which is more concerned with his worldly success than in the personal rewards of making art, which are invaluable."

Olafur Eliasson

"Be very sensitive to where you are - in what times and in what parts of the world, and how that constitutes the artistic practice, the artistic inquiry"

Michael Craig-Martin

"Have a passionate desire to make art that overrides absolutely everything else"

American / British artist and educator Michael Craig-Martin considers the creative process, the drive to create and how this can change over a long career.

Original Source: RA


Brian Kershisnik

American painter Brian Kershisnik has these five tips to offer young artists:

  1. Work Hard
  2. Follow the thread
  3. Enjoy Yourself
  4. Feel
  5. Don't force symbols 

Ray Charles

Have faith in yourself, and above all. practice"

Legendary R&B & early soul performer - Ray Charles, gives some words of advice to young musicians and talks about how times have changed in the music industry. 


"If you spend your life working on something that you love and you never have success with it, at least you spent your life doing something that you love."

Electronic musician - Moby talks about loving your work, being open minded, and embracing the history of music.