Q: At what point does something become beautiful? Does it only occur when “true art” emerges or is it simply an effect of creation, the process of creation?
Scully: I think it is very difficult to decide, to quantify what goes into it. There was a period where people thought a certain shape in relation to the “S” made beauty. The serpentine river in London is based on that principle and you would find this shape occurring in paintings, or people talking about paintings and looking for this shape. I don’t believe you can do it like that. I am not sure I believe in “schools” either. I am really an individualist. The question for me is whether or not something moves me and engages me. If I am moved and engaged by something, I find it beautiful. For me the term beautiful is not pejorative, it is always affirmative. If I say I find it very convincing, even though it is ugly, the fact it is done with such authenticity and conviction and it is finally persuasive, it becomes beautiful. In other words, I don’t think beauty is simply a question of appearances. It can come out left field and redefine itself. It can be something you’ve never seen before, or it can be something you think you have seen before, like my work, that presents itself with another life.