Sunday, August 12, 2018

Alberto Giacometti: Works, Writings, Interviews (Essentials Poligrafa) Hardcover – March 1, 2007 by Alberto Giacometti (Author, Artist, Contributor), Ángel González (Author) (Ediciones Poligrafa)

Intelligent introduction

Frankly, the more work there is in the english language on Giacometti the better. This book is a refined and intelligent introduction. It's reproduced images are excellent and the writings vary from critique and interview to Giacometti's own words. It meshes studio photographs and contemporary photos with images of museum works so there is a progression and context for the novice to draw from.

Giacometti was the Leonard Cohen of the 20th century art world. Linked to movements and society, but always a recluse whose art work now draws bigger sums at auction than Picasso and yet is unknown to the common man. Generally his art is more archetypal while the artist, a vibrant Gainsbourg-like personality of the swinging sixties remains obscure. It is refreshing to know that his words are still available and linked to viable photographs.

Alberto Giacometti's early Surrealist and Cubist forms, compact volumes inspired by Africa and the Cyclades, eventually led this seminal twentieth-century Swiss artist to acknowledge a formal void that he would spend the balance of his career filling with the human figure. In the mid-1930s, influenced by the terrible social and political changes that were taking place across Europe, Giacometti began to develop heads and nudes in a signature style--they were universally elongated, skeletal, haunting, solitary and above all, transcendent. Giacometti's written testimony and reflections on his change of perspective, and on his artistic ideas and goals, are remarkable for their aptness and poetic quality. In his writings, gathered here, the artist pours out his doubts, his suffering and his creative hopes as very few artists have been capable of doing before or since.

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