Patti Smith's Advice For Aspiring Artists Is Just Wonderful

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05.01.13 2 Comments

A friend sent me this video last night because the Patti Smith interview it features took place at the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art, which you would think would be some place in Louisiana, except it’s not — it’s in Denmark. Anyway, the speech contained within is actually quite lovely and inspiring, not to mention filled with excellent advice. A highlight of the speech was Smith describing the advice she received from William S. Burroughs when she was young and struggling.

“Build a good name. Keep your name clean. Don’t make compromises, don’t worry about making a bunch of money or being successful. Be concerned about doing good work. Protect your work and if you build a good name, eventually that name will be its own currency. Life is like a roller coaster ride, it is never going to be perfect. It is going to have perfect moments and rough spots, but it’s all worth it.”

She added when closing: “Have fun, but try to stay clean and stay healthy, because you have a lot of challenges ahead, but be happy.” Words to live, and create, by.

(Laughing Squid via my friend Alex)

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Brett has been a New York Times contributing writer, a national affairs reporter for Yahoo! News, and a writer/editor at Gawker Media. Brett has also written for Esquire, Yahoo! Sports, Deadspin, Complex, Gourmet, Hazlitt, Animal, Gambit, and Dealbreaker.

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