In this week’s newsletter: art, secrets, uncertainty, neurodiversity, and more...

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A newsletter from the desk of Austin Kleon
art is the fossil record of the artist

Hey y’all,

Here are 10 things I thought were worth sharing this week:

  1. Art is the fossil record of the artist.”
  2. Books: This week I drove to Bookpeople, bought Lynda Barry’s Making Comics, drove home, and read the whole thing in one sitting. I also read Caitlin Doughty’s Smoke Gets in Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory. (At the breakfast table, I’m catching up on back issues of Illustoria.)
  3. Philip Glass on lineage vs. legacy.
  4. I try not to miss a Werner Herzog interview. (Re: “Do not underestimate the Kardashians,” my friend Matt Thomas has been saying this for years.) Bonus read: Herzog on WrestleMania.
  5. Questions I like to ask when I interview creative people.
  6. It really helped me as a parent (and a human and an artist) when I learned about neurodiversity from books like Steve Silberman’s Neurotribes and Andrew Solomon’s Far From The Tree. In his essay “Stammer Time,” journalist Barry Yeoman writes about how he thinks his stuttering makes him better at his job and how he and other stutterers are starting to feel that fluent speech is overrated. (This is a topic near and dear to my heart, as I’m both fascinated by stories of how disabilities and physical shortcomings lead to signature work and the proud parent of a stutterer!)
  7. Teach your tongue to say, “I don’t know.”
  8. Eye candy: I wrote about the things we hide in our work after we watched Phantom Thread for the sixth time. (We followed it with Hitchcock’s Rebecca, which was excellent.)
  9. Ear candy: I had no idea the Breeders recorded country-tinged demos before Pod, I really like the new Billie Eilish song (I became a fan after watching Finneas’s tour of their childhood home), and my son has me listening to Aphex Twin’s Syro after school pickup.
  10. RIP comics journalist Tom Spurgeon. Here’s a lovely essay about his life in comics he wrote during a life-threatening health problem. (I wrote a little bit about him in this post about appreciating life through images of death, “Ain’t it good to be alive?”)
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PS. This week’s Keep Going inspiration:
Philip Glass
Austin Kleon

Austin Kleon is the author of Steal Like An Artist and other books.

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