Maurice Sendak

(Maurice Bernard Sendak)

Maurice Sendak
Maurice Sendak
  • Born: June 10, 1928
  • Died: May 8, 2012
  • Nationality: American
  • Profession: Artist

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Maurice Bernard Sendak was an American illustrator and writer of children's books. He became widely known for his book Where the Wild Things Are, first published in 1963. Born to Jewish-Polish parents, his childhood was affected by the death of many of his family members during the Holocaust. Sendak also wrote works such as In the Night Kitchen, Outside Over There, and illustrated many works by other authors including the Little Bear books by Else Holmelund Minarik.

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Quotes
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A book is a book is a book.
All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy.
All I wanted was to be straight so my parents could be happy. They never, never, never knew.
As a kid, all I thought about was death. Death
As a kid, all I thought about was death. But you can't tell your parents that. Death
Certainly we want to protect our children from new and painful experiences that are beyond their emotional comprehension and that intensify anxiety; and to a point we can prevent premature exposure to such experiences.
Childhood is a tricky business. Usually, something goes wrong. Business, Commerce & Finance
Do parents sit down and tell their kids everything? I don't know. I don't know.
Do parents sit down and tell their kids everything? I don't know. I don't know. I've convinced myself - I hope I'm right - that children despair of you if you don't tell them the truth. Truth ;Hope
Finding out that I was gay when I was older was a shock and a disappointment.
Girls are infinitely more complicated than boys and women more than men. And there's no doubt about that. We just don't like to think about it. Certainly the men don't like to think about it. Women
Grown-ups are afraid for children. It's not children who are afraid.
'Hansel and Gretel' is one of the scariest stories ever written! Psychotic mother; stupid, inane father.
I adored Mickey Mouse when I was a child. He was the emblem of happiness and funniness. Happiness & Unhappiness
I am not a religious person, nor do I have any regrets.
I became a set designer for opera.
I became a set designer for opera. I'm a great opera buff, I love classical music, and I needed a time-out. Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex ;Music, Chants & Rapps
I can't believe I've turned into a typical old man.
I can't believe I've turned into a typical old man. I can't believe it. I was young just minutes ago.
I cry a lot because I miss people.
I did not know how to paint a mural. I did not know how to prepare the surface. There was nobody from the Renaissance around who could advise me, and I did the best I could.
I didn't have much confidence in myself... never.
I do not remember any proper children's books in my childhood. I was not exposed to them.
I don't believe in an afterlife but I still fully expect to see my brother again.
I don't have kids at all and I thank God that I never did. Religion & God
I don't need faith. Religion & God
I don't write for children. I write and someone says it's for children.
I feel extremely vulnerable.
I feel like I don't have a lot of time left. Time
I grew up in a house that was in a constant state of mourning.
I had a brother who was my savior, made my childhood bearable.
I hate people.
I hate those e-books. They can not be the future... they may well be... I will be dead. Future
I hate those e-books. They cannot be the future. They may well be. Future
I have a good life. Life
I have a little tiny Emily Dickinson so big that I carry in my pocket everywhere. And you just read three poems of Emily. She is so brave. She is so strong. She is such a sexy, passionate, little woman. I feel better.
I have this idiot name tag which says 'controversial.'
I have to accept my role. I will never kill myself like Vincent Van Gogh. Nor will I paint beautiful water lilies like Monet. I can't do that. I'm in the idiot role of being a kiddie book person.
I mean, being a child was being a child, was being a creature without power, without pocket money, without escape routes of any kind. So I didn't want to be a child. Power ;Money, Coins & Minting
I only have one subject. The question I am obsessed with is: How do children survive?
I refuse to lie to children.
I remember how much - when I was a small boy I was taken to see a version of 'Peter Pan.' I detested it. I mean, the sentimental idea that anybody would want to remain a boy.
I stress character, character, character.
I teach.
I think people should be given a test much like driver's tests as to whether they're capable of being parents!
I think people should be given a test much like driver's tests as to whether they're capable of being parents! It's an art form. I talk a lot. And I think a lot. And I draw a lot. But never in a million years would I have been a parent. That's just work that's too hard. Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I want to be alone and work until the day my heads hits the drawing table and I'm dead. Kaput. I feel very much like I want to be with my brother and sister again. They're nowhere. I know they're nowhere and they don't exist, but if nowhere means that's where they are, that's where I want to be. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I want to write something so simple, so short and so silly... and I want it to be for my brother.
I wanted to be acknowledged as an artist, not just some kiddie-book artist.
I was miserable as a kid.
I would infinitely prefer a daughter.
I write books that seem more suitable for children, and that's OK with me. They are a better audience and tougher critics. Kids tell you what they think, not what they think they should think.
I'd like to believe an accumulation of experience has made me a sort of a grown-up person, so I can have judgment and taste and whatever.
If life is so critical, if Anne Frank could die, if my friend could die, children were as vulnerable as adults, and that gave me a secret purpose to my work, to make them live. Because I wanted to live. I wanted to grow up. Life ;Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I'm a lucky buck.
I'm an illustrator. I have to accept my role.
I'm not a religious person.
I'm not afraid of death. Death
I'm not Hans Christian Anderson. Nobody's gonna make a statue in the park with a lot of scrambling kids climbing up me. I won't have it, okay?
I'm not obsessed with angels but I do adore angels.
I'm scared of watching a TV show about vampires. I can't fall asleep.
I'm sick of 'Wild Things.'
I'm still as enamored and turned on by work as I was when I was young. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
I'm totally crazy, I know that.
I'm writing a poem right now about a nose. I've always wanted to write a poem about a nose. But it's a ludicrous subject. That's why, when I was younger, I was afraid of something that didn't make a lot of sense. But now I'm not. I have nothing to worry about. It doesn't matter.
In plain terms, a child is a complicated creature who can drive you crazy. There's a cruelty to childhood, there's an anger.
It dawned on me that art was the way I could survive. Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
It's no fun being lonely.
I've always loved pigs: the shape of them, the look of them, and the fact that they are so intelligent.
I've convinced myself - I hope I'm right - that children despair of you if you don't tell them the truth. Truth ;Hope
Kids are so shrewd.
Kids don't know about best sellers. They go for what they enjoy. They aren't star chasers and they don't suck up. It's why I like them.
Kids lead a very private life. Life
Most children - I know I did when I was a kid - fantasize another set of parents. Or fantasize no parents. They don't tell their real parents about that - you don't want to tell Mom and Dad. Families, Children & Parenting
Most children - I know I did when I was a kid - fantasize another set of parents. Or fantasize no parents. They don't tell their real parents about that - you don't want to tell Mom and Dad. Kids lead a very private life. And I was a typical child, I think. I was a liar. Life ;Families, Children & Parenting
Mothers and children are human beings, and they will sometimes do the wrong thing.
My being gay was something of not great interest to me.
My father belonged to a Jewish social club.
My father could be very witty, even if the humor was always on the darker side of irony. Humor
My life in Brooklyn was in constant danger because of my bad health. Life ;Health, Healthcare & Medicine
My parents were ignorant peasants from the Old World.
My parents were very indiscrete.
My therapies went on forever.
My work is not great, but it's respectable. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
My work is not great, but it's respectable. I have no false illusions. Work, Workers & The Labor Force
Newt Gingrich is an idiot of great renown... There's something so hopelessly gross and vile about him it's hard to take him seriously.
Oh, I adored Mickey Mouse when I was a child. He was the emblem of happiness and funniness. You went to the movies then, you saw two movies and a short. When Mickey Mouse came on the screen and there was his big head, my sister said she had to hold onto me. I went berserk. Happiness & Unhappiness ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
Parents shouldn't assume children are made out of sugar candy and will break and collapse instantly.
Parents shouldn't assume children are made out of sugar candy and will break and collapse instantly. Kids don't. We do.
People from New York have been calling, to see if I'm still alive. When I answer the phone, you can hear the disappointment in their voice.
That always seemed to be the most critical test that a child was confronted with - loss of parents, loss of direction, loss of love. Can you live without a mother and a father? Love, Romance, Marriage & Sex
The distinctions of fine art bore me to death. Death ;Arts, Culture, Entertainment & Lifestyle
The world is twice as crazy as it's ever been.
There are certain pieces of music that are always attached to certain books. Music, Chants & Rapps
There must be more to life than having everything. Life
There's so much more to a book than just the reading.
There's something in this country that is so opposed to understanding the complexity of children.
Things come to you without you necessarily knowing what they mean.
To get a child's trust - you may know or not - is a very hard thing to do. They're so used to not believing adults - because adults tell tales and lies all the time. Time ;Trust
We're animals. We're violent. We're criminal.
We're supposed to do all these things which trouble us deeply because it's so against what we naturally would want to do.
What I do as best I can is out of a deep respect for children, for how difficult their world is. Respect
When I did 'Bumble-ardy,' I was so intensely aware of death. Eugene, my friend and partner, was dying here in the house when I did 'Bumble-ardy'. I did 'Bumble-ardy' to save myself. I did not want to die with him. I wanted to live, as any human being does. Death
When Mozart is playing in my room, I am in conjunction with something I can't explain... I don't need to. I know that if there's a purpose for life, it was for me to hear Mozart. Life
Yes, there have to be places for safe wonderful stories.
You cannot write for children They're much too complicated. You can only write books that are of interest to them.
You can't write masterpieces in your 80s and be happy too.
You don't want to do something that's all terrifying.
You know who my gods are, who I believe in fervently? Herman Melville, Emily Dickinson - she's probably the top - Mozart, Shakespeare, Keats. These are wonderful gods who have gotten me through the narrow straits of life. Life