"I was reading Kierkegaard," the artist recalled, "and I came across the phrase 'To be purified is to will one thing.' It made me sick."(31) No purity means no oneness. But de Kooning's will to impurity, to many things rather than one - which is to say, to something incomplete in its unification - was not a doctrine either; it was simply that the "desire to make a style is an apology for one's anxiety," and better to make a picture that trembles with anxiety than one that is static because stylistically pure.
De Kooning, a retrospective by John Elderfield