"At Varengeville-sur-Mer, in 1939, I began a new stage in my work which had its source in music and nature. It was about the time that war broke out. I felt a deep desire to escape. I closed myself within myself purposely. The night, music and the stars began to play a major role in suggesting my paintings. Music had always appealed to me, and now music in this period began to take the role poetry had played in the early twenties - especially Bach and Mozart - when I went back to Majorca upon the fall of France.
"Also the material of my painting began to take a new importance. In watercolours I would roughen the surface of the paper by rubbing it. Painting over this roughened surface produced curious chance shapes. Perhaps my self-imposed isolation from my colleagues led me to turn for suggestions to the materials of my art...
"Nowadays I rarely start a picture from a hallucination as I did in the twenties, or, as later, from collages. What is most interesting to me today is the material I am working with. It supplies the shock which suggests the form just as cracks in a wall suggested shapes to Leonardo.
"For this reason I always work on several canvases at once. I start a canvas with a thought of what it may eventually become. I put it aside after the first fire has abated. I may not look at it again for months. Then I take it out and work at it coldly like an artisan, guided strictly by rules of composition after the first shock of suggestion has cooled" (Miró, quoted in J. Johnson Sweeney, 'Comment and Interview', in Partisan Review, New York, February 1948).