Part ISCA 55-56. Interview by Art Speaks magazine on 3 August 1993, at an exhibition of 70,000 Dream-Freedom-Peace-Birds, Soho, New York.
Interviewer: Does the work of pop art have any relevance to your art — in other words, to very directly spiritual art?Sri Chinmoy: You have to forgive me. It is not that I do not appreciate pop art. It is only that I have not been to a museum for a long, long time. In 1964, when I first came to New York, I went to the Asia Society, where they had the works of a few Eastern artists. Then I visited a few other museums, but I could not understand what I saw. Of course, art is not something to be understood; it is something to be felt. Only I am saying that it was so foreign to me that I could not appreciate it; I am in no way criticising or judging it.
I never thought that God would make me an artist. In my life I have done quite a few things through the Grace of God. I play a number of musical instruments, but there is nobody who teaches me. Again, although I did not complete high school, my philosophy is taught at some universities and many people read my books. I studied a little art in school, around 1944, but I never had real instruction.
Everything I do is entirely the result of God’s Grace. Out of His infinite Compassion, He blesses me with inspiration. His inspiration is all the time helping and guiding me in my painting and in everything else. Therefore, it has not been necessary for me to see the work of other artists in order to paint. It is not because I do not appreciate them; far from it. The reason is that I get all my inspiration from God.