One must be a living man and a posthumous artist.

Jean Cocteau

Jean Cocteau

Profession: Film Director
Nationality: French

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Man seeks to escape himself in myth, and does so by any means at his disposal. Drugs, alcohol, or lies. Unable to withdraw into himself, he disguises himself. Lies and inaccuracy give him a few moments of comfort.

Art is a marriage of the conscious and the unconscious.

There is always a period when a man with a beard shaves it off. This period does not last. He returns headlong to his beard.

Everything one does in life, even love, occurs in an express train racing toward death. To smoke opium is to get out of the train while it is still moving. It is to concern oneself with something other than life or death.

I believe in luck: how else can you explain the success of those you dislike?

One of the characteristics of the dream is that nothing surprises us in it. With no regret, we agree to live in it with strangers, completely cut off from our habits and friends.

If a hermit lives in a state of ecstasy, his lack of comfort becomes the height of comfort. He must relinquish it.

I have lost my seven best friends, which is to say God has had mercy on me seven times without realizing it. He lent a friendship, took it from me, sent me another.

A film is a petrified fountain of thought.

Tact in audacity is knowing how far you can go without going too far.

The greatest masterpiece in literature is only a dictionary out of order.

Whatever the public blames you for, cultivate it; it is yourself.

Film will only became an art when its materials are as inexpensive as pencil and paper.

Art is not a pastime but a priesthood.