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Art Without Compromise [Kindle Edition]

Wendy Richmond
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Combining 24 years of research and insight from her columns in Communication Arts magazine, artist, educator, and writer Wendy Richmond challenges artists to investigate their work through multiple lenses in her newest book, Art Without Compromise*. Her commentaries, exercises, and wide-ranging references to contemporary thinkers will inspire artists to change the way they think about their creative landscape, from personal goals to cultural influences to technological realities. Her insights about major cultural figures, from Roland Barthes to Susan Sontag to Walker Evans, introduce their philosophies into the context of contemporary art making. Like a Malcolm Gladwell for artists, Richmond helps artists to look closely at what they see every day--in their own art making and in the world around them. In the process, she helps artists to develop an uncompromising commitment to finding and protecting their own unique process for making their strongest and most relevant art. This thought-provoking and inspirational book covers such topics as: developing a solid creative process through “Visual Reflection Notebooks” and “Bring Play to Work”; understanding the artist’s unique identity in relation to the larger culture; building systems of support and collaboration; explaining how an artist’s needs and passions can lead to innovation and authenticity; using language to inspire visual creativity; responding to the Internet and changing concepts of what is public and private; and accepting digression as a creative necessity. Through the exercises and techniques outlined in Art Without Compromise*, the reader will develop new confidence to pursue individual goals and inspiration to explore new paths, along with motivation to overcome creative blocks. With a revised understanding of the relevance in their own work within the sphere of contemporary culture, the artist will come away with a clearer perspective on his or her past and future work and a critical eye for personal authenticity.

Editorial Reviews


"A first-hand account of the essentials of the creative process, written in a indomitable and penetrating voice and style." (Nicholas Negroponte, co-founder, MIT Media Lab )

About the Author

Wendy Richmond is a visual artist, writer, and educator whose work explores issues of personal privacy, technology, and creativity in contemporary culture. A graduate of Wesleyan University, Richmond received her Master's degree from New York University. Her teaching experience includes MIT, International Center of Photography, and Harvard University Graduate School of Education, where she co-created courses in expression and media. She is author of Design & Technology: Erasing the Boundaries and overneath, a collaboration of photography and dance. She also has a regular column in the design industry magazine Communication Arts. Richmond lives in New York City.

Product Details

  • File Size: 368 KB
  • Print Length: 233 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1581156669
  • Publisher: Allworth Press; 1 edition (February 16, 2010)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0038OOT8E
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #962,034 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Intelligent encouragement January 10, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm reading it for the second of the next hundred times. Like Roland Barthes, it will be a touchstone at critical moments forever. Thank you. There are so many resonances, things to and with which we connect-- history, place, chosen environments. Your book is wonderful, smart, concise, inspiring and even sassy. I selfishly can't imagine anyone who could appreciate it more. That said, I'm sure it will influence all the best souls.
Truth spoken to those excited about celebrating truth.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile read! November 9, 2009
By S. B.
This book is an important resource for artists. Read it cover to cover or skip around and focus on different chapters. Either way it provides new ways to look at your work, its context and content. It will make you think, and then push your art-making forward.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "Art Without Compromise" January 1, 2010
Wendy Richmond's art is both a reflection of our social selves in the public sphere and a practice filled with the formal beauty that comes with years of working and thinking about art making. Her book, "Art Without Compromise", is a primer for artists and designers with insights for anyone interested in the arts but its spirit of generosity is what sets it apart from other books of its kind. Wendy Richmond is an artist, a teacher, and a writer. There is an openness and respect for the work of others that is uncommon in the artworld; a serious consideration of peers and of students alike. The book covers a surprising amount of ground looking at the creative process, at the intersection of contemporary art and technology, at cross disciplinary collaboration. In its role as primer it is filled with useful information, practical, theoretical, conversational. But again, it is the spirit of the book and Ms. Richmond's engagement that we care about most. There is a commitment to art making and to visual art in particular. There is a great chapter on the subject of visual thinking and a consideration of why visual thinking is a second class citizen in the United States. There is a voice that encourages artists to allow themselves the time and space to develop their own vision and to trust their own notions of what is important. This is not a utopian voice but the voice of someone who has worked in the commercial world and who understands the pressures exerted on artists to compromise and to second guess. It is a book that considers authenticity as subject matter but describes authenticity best by way of example.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars open your eyes October 30, 2009
this book will challenge you to think differently and more deeply about the work you do, the life you lead, and the world you inhabit on a daily basis. an invigorating read!
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5.0 out of 5 stars the Optical Observer April 13, 2010
I picked up Wendy Richmond's new book + I cannot read it fast enough but I don't want it to end and then there is so much meat to each story that I quickly remind myself to read s l o w ly. Wendy's style of connecting words, relaying sentiments and stories is so inspiring and compelling.

Muriel Cooper!!!! INCREDIBLE. I love, love this character profile!

I feel that Wendy writes about her thoughtful and perceptive insights and is such an acute observer of what is also around everyone else (what some may call the obvious) but not many people are feeling or are seeing what she notices. It is entirely relate-able and I love, love her language.

In reading each story no matter what order, Wendy has woven all of her loves to make a dynamic career that continues to inspire and fuel her art and in-turn inspires the reader. This book is a treasure!! WOW!! I know I will re-read this book many, many times. What a treasure. Thank you for this gift.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Great Perspectives August 2, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm not an artist, though I do some writing. Nevertheless, this book changed the way I look at the world, opened my eyes and my thought processes, allowed me to see how I might see and do things differently in my life and my own field. Art has to engage the public, and the public is very different now in this age of technology. Wendy Richmond takes her wealth of knowledge (of art as well as history and literature) to really look at the world from both global and very minute and personal perspectives. What is art now? How incorporate technology to make art that allows you to maintain your artistic integrity, vision, and skills, yet also engages? Richmond clearly loves looking and thinking about everything, and her writing is engaging in the way of a great and intimate conversation.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A choice read that is filled with much food for thought February 12, 2010
Art is not science. "Art Without Compromise" is a discussion of art from Wendy Richmond encouraging artists to break free of the shackles of form and explore themselves through their work. Richmond discusses the role of the individual artist in a larger society, the power of collaboration, being original when everything has been done, the pros and cons of the Internet, and how creativity is always contrary, "Art Without Compromise" is a choice read that is filled with much food for thought.
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Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A book with great insight into the process of making art and the things that keep us from making art. There are many gems that you read and go "Aha! That's me - I do that all the time." As they say in most addiction treatment modalities, recognizing the problem is half the battle. This book was a great mirror to my creative self and my creative blocks and was a source of comfort and inspiration. It is good to know that we are not the only ones that struggle with the creative process. But it is also wonderful to see other ways to expand your creative process. Shedding the cloak of self reprisal for our ideas and processes is a wonderful lesson. It is all too difficult to do, but again, recognizing this is the first step to changing it. This isn't a book about a formulaic way to make art, but a book about finding your own inner warrior and embracing and accepting your own individual creative processes. It is also a book about looking outside yourself and inside yourself at the same time to find your creative process. Consume this book. Digest it. Ruminate on its ideas and its lessons. And if you allow yourself to embrace these lessons, you will become the artist you want to be.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Mediocre, sometimes pretentious and mostly boring
This book is a collection of loosely associated essays, supposedly on the general topic of making art.

First the good news. Read more
Published on January 15, 2012 by bkpix
5.0 out of 5 stars a godsend
I'm an artist who's been struggling with my work a bit lately. Feeling a bit isolated and tired, I needed a jump-start. This book was exactly what I was looking for. Read more
Published on August 3, 2010 by DM in SF
5.0 out of 5 stars I love it!
I love it! I find the writing personal, to the point, helpful to all artists and designers, and an insightful companion to one's daily trials in the field of creative work. Read more
Published on May 5, 2010 by Jeanne L. Dunn
2.0 out of 5 stars A different opinion
I'm not sure how or why anyone would give this book a 5-star review. The book is comprised of short chapters of anecdotes of "ah-hah" moments in the artist's life from a career in... Read more
Published on April 21, 2010 by Steven L. Swinehart
5.0 out of 5 stars Delightful while being empowering
Art without Compromise is a delightful read...bite-sized essays treat many of the themes that dance around in the working artist's studio with wit and thoughtful consideration. Read more
Published on March 30, 2010 by D. Donohue
5.0 out of 5 stars A smart and modern take...
Wendy Richmond brings a fresh, contemporary and honest perspective to the making of art. For Richmond, it isn't just about the process, it's about context and self reflection. Read more
Published on March 29, 2010 by W. Glenn Griffin
5.0 out of 5 stars Essential !
For all the thoughts and questions you have, this book is the best companion. It expands the dialogue and gives a brave look into the challenges and changes we face as artist and... Read more
Published on March 29, 2010 by Shulla
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More About the Author

Wendy Richmond is a visual artist, writer and educator whose work explores issues of personal privacy, technology, and creativity in contemporary culture. With a background in fine arts, design and dance, Richmond began mixing traditional media with new technology at MIT's Visible Language Workshop. She collaborated with programmers to develop pioneering work with interactive books at MIT's Media Lab, and co-founded the Design Lab at WGBH in Boston. Her teaching experience includes MIT, International Center of Photography, and Harvard University Graduate School of Education where she co-created courses in media and expression.

Richmond is a contributing editor at Communications Arts magazine; her regular column "Design Culture" began in 1984. She is the author of Design & Technology: Erasing the Boundaries and overneath, a collaboration of photography and dance. Her new book Art without Compromise* is published by Allworth Press.

Richmond is the recipient of a Rockefeller Foundation Bellagio Center residency, a National Endowment for the Arts grant, a LEF Foundation grant, the Hatch Award for Creative Excellence, and numerous art and design awards. Richmond's exhibition "Public Privacy: Wendy Richmond's Surreptitious Cellphone" was first shown at the Museum of Photographic Arts in San Diego and was featured in the New York Times. It was also presented at the International Association of Privacy Summit in Washington, DC and Carroll and Sons in Boston.

Richmond's most recent body of work, "Overheard," was commissioned as an installation by the University of California San Diego. Richmond invited media artist/interaction designer Michael Chladil to collaborate, and they developed an interactive installation of sound, sight, and physicality. Richmond is also collaborating on an interdisciplinary theater work in New York titled "Talk Soon."


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