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In Solitude — Artists' Lives in Seclusion

When chosen, solitude grants the creation of a sacred space to reveal oneself. Through this lens we explore sanctuaries of artists past & present.
Shaina Mote — In Solitude — Artists' Lives in Seclusion

How much better is silence; the coffee cup, the table. How much better to sit by myself like the solitary sea-bird
that opens its wings on the stake.
Let me sit here for ever with bare things,
this coffee cup, this knife, this fork,
things in themselves, myself being myself.

― From The Waves by Virginia Woolf


Above: Eileen Gray's home, Tempe à Pailla — courtesy of Centre Pompidou



E-1027's Exterior, Eileen Gray's villa on the French Riviera — courtesy of Cap Moderne




The Home Studio of Frida Kahlo — courtesy of Museo Casa Estudio Diego Rivera y Frida Kahlo



"A house is not a machine to live in. It is the shell of a man — his extension, his release, his spiritual emanation. Not only its visual harmony but its organization as a whole, the whole work combined together, make it human in the most profound sense."  — Eileen Gray

Interior of Frida Kahlo's House-Studio — courtesy of Estudio Casa de Diego Rivera y Frida Kahlo




O'Keeffe opening the curtains of her studio, 1960 — Georgia O'Keeffe Museum


The Breakfast Room, Ghost Ranch — Georgia O'Keeffe Museum



For now she need not think of anybody.
She could be herself, by herself.
And that was what now she often felt the need of - to think;
well not even to think. To be silent; to be alone.
All the being and the doing, expansive, glittering, vocal, evaporated;
and one shrunk, with a sense of solemnity, to being oneself, a wedge-shaped core of darkness, something invisible to others... and this self having shed its attachments was free for the strangest adventures. 

From The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf



Andrea Zittel, Experimental Living Cabin — NY Times



Andrea Zittel, A-Z West — courtesy of A-Z West



There is no doubt that solitude is a challenge and to maintain balance within it a precarious business. But I must not forget that, for me, being with people or even with one beloved person for any length of time without solitude is even worse. I lose my center. I feel dispersed, scattered, in pieces. I must have time alone in which to mull over my encounter, and to extract its juice, its essence, to understand what has really happened to me as a consequence of it.

From Journal of a Solitude by May Sarton 


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