© Barbara Morgan, 1940,
 Portrait of Martha Graham, Letter to the World, “Kick”

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.

You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate YOU. Keep the channel open… No artist is pleased…  There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction; a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.” (Martha Graham to Agnes DeMille)

This photograph is part of the exhibition 'Made in America 1900-1950. Photographs from the National Gallery of Canada’, featuring pictures by Edward Steichen, Paul Strand, Walker Evans, Margaret Bourke-White, Dorothea Lange, Lisette Model, Weegee, a.o.

Sobey Curatorial Assistant Katherine Stauble and Senior Designer Stefan Canuel tell you what’s so special about this exhibition in this video.

Exhibition dates:
Dec. 9, 2011 – Apr. 1, 2012 at the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa.

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