The neurotic and the artist

On the Bridge (black and white photograph)
On the Bridge (black and white photograph by Paul Politis,) 2018
On the Bridge (black and white photograph)
On the Bridge (black and white photograph by Paul Politis,) 2018

“The neurotic fails through incessant vacillation. The artist succeeds in giving shape and form to the conflict and ejects truth and beauty.”
– Otto Rank

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“The neurotic, no matter whether productive or obstructed, suffers fundamentally from the fact that he cannot or will not accept himself, his own individuality, his own personality. On one hand he criticizes himself to excess, on the other he idealizes himself to excess, which means that he makes too great demands on himself and his completeness, so that failing to attain leads only to more self-criticism. If we take this thwarted type, as we may do for our purposes, and compare him to the artist, it is at once clear that the artist is in a sense the antithesis to the self-critical neurotic type. Not that the artist does not criticize himself, but by accepting his personality he not only fulfils that for which the neurotic is striving in vain, but goes far beyond it. The precondition, then, of the creative personality is not only its acceptance, but its actual glorification, of itself”
– Otto Rank, Art and Artist

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“The creative type nominates itself at once as an artist… in the artist-type the creative urge is constantly related, ideologically, to his own ego… whereas the average man uses his calling chiefly as a means to material existence, and psychically only so far as to enable him to feel himself a useful member of human society… the artist needs his calling for his spiritual existence, just as the early cultures of mankind could not have existed and developed without art… His calling is not a means of livelihood, but life itself”
– Otto Rank, Art and Artist

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