“What about the…

“What about the cliché of the artist who leaves his wife and children so he can paint? Or Nero playing the harp while Rome burned?”

“Both were moral decisions. Both served a higher good, in the mind of the artist. The conflict lies between the morals of the artist and the morals of society, not between aesthetics and morality: But often this isn’t understood; and here comes the waste, the tragedy. An artist, stealing paints from a store, for example, imagines himself to have made an inevitable but immoral decision, and then he sees himself as fallen from grace; what follows is despair and petty irresponsibility, as if morality were a great glass world which can be utterly shattered by one act.”

Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice

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