Quotes by abstract artists about colour

One of the key focuses of abstract artists is to elicit feeling in the viewer and one of the primary ways to do this is through skilled use of colour.

Here are some inspirational quotes from famous abstract artists on how they viewed and used colour to create great works of art.


Seek the strongest colour effect possible… the content is of no importance.

Henri Matisse

Colour is a power which directly influences the soul.

Wassily Kandinsky

Cutting into colour reminds me of the sculptor’s direct carving.

Henri Matisse

We get used to a certain kind of colour of form or format, and it’s acceptable. And to puncture that is sticking your neck out a bit. And then pretty soon, that’s very acceptable.

Lee Krasner

All painting – the painting of the past as well as of the present – shows us that its essential plastic means we are only line and colour.

Piet Mondrian

You think my paintings are calm, like windows in some cathedral? You should look again. I’m the most violent of all the American painters. Behind those colours there hides the final cataclysm.

Mark Rothko

Colour is the keyboard, the eyes are the hammers, the soul is the piano with many strings. The artist is the hand that plays, touching one key or another purposively, to cause vibrations in the soul.

Wassily Kandinsky

I have established the semaphore of Suprematism. I have beaten the lining of the coloured sky, torn it away and in the sack that formed itself, I have put colour and knotted it. Swim! The free white sea, infinity, lies before you.

Kasimir Malevic

It is not enough to place colours, however beautiful, one beside the other; colours must also react on one another. Otherwise, you have cacophony.

Henri Matisse

Objective painting is not good painting unless it is good in the abstract sense. A hill or tree cannot make a good painting just because it is a hill or tree. It is lines and colours put together so that they may say something.

Georgia O’Keeffe

View my current work and read other articles on my blog to see my interpretations of abstract art.

See also quotes from abstract artists on abstract art.