In Asia, all sculptures are diagrams, conventionalized schemes mastered
by professional artists from academic rules, traditional texts,
"handed-down" models. Standard forms and identical patterns are repeated
and refined for centuries. The intensity, consciousness, and
perfection of Asiatic art comes only from repetitiousness and
sameness, just as true originality exists only where all artists work in
the same traditions. Never anywhere in Asia was there no awareness that
real freedom in art, and the absolute essence that makes art the thing
it is, can be realized only through the formula; in Asia this has been
understood. Without art's continuity and an art-for-art's sake
conviction and art's unchanging spiritual identity and a timeless world
point of view, Asia's art would be inaccessible and the "one thing"
completely secret. The one thing is the only thing in art worth thinking
and talking about.
from TIMELESS IN ASIA in Art News, January 1960.