ISBN is

9780375754838 / 0375754830

Portraits: Talking with Artists at the Met, the Modern, the Louvre and Elsewhere (Modern Library Paperbacks)

by

Publisher:Modern Library

Edition:Softcover

Language:English

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About the book:

"One can only speak properly about paintings in front of paintings," Paul CÚzanne once said. It is usually, though, critics who speak in front of paintings, not artists. With an eye toward rectifying that situation, Michael Kimmelman, chief art critic of the New York Times, constructed Portraits. He invited individual artists to meet him at museums, then tagged along on their peregrinations through various galleries--sometimes the most unlikely ones. At New York's Metropolitan Museum, the late Roy Lichtenstein, papa of pop, stopped to praise some frou-frou Fragonards. Who knew? "Clearly there's something wrong with me," Lichtenstein said.

Kimmelman's knowledge of art is astonishingly broad, and he has a way with questions that ignite each artist's memories, reflections, and opinions. Otherwise, he inserts himself only to offer enough biographical data or physical description to bring a reader up-to-date and up close. For the most part, he simply listens. Closely. The result is a series of interviews so cozy readers may feel they're eavesdropping. Few readers will ever make another foray through the Metropolitan or the Museum of Modern Art or London's National Gallery completely alone. After devouring these "portraits"--most of which appeared originally as articles in the Times's art pages--they will be accompanied forevermore by the lively, eccentric, thoughtful, unguarded voices of Jacob Lawrence, Kiki Smith, Wayne Thibaud, Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, Elizabeth Murray, Cindy Sherman, Richard Serra, Leon Golub and Nancy Spero, Brice Marden, Hans Haacke, and Chuck Close. --Peggy Moorman

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