Fishpond Gift Vouchers - Let them choose!

We won't be beaten by anyone. Guaranteed

The Accidental Masterpiece
By

Rating
A "New York Times" bestseller--a dazzling and inspirational survey of how art can be found and appreciated in everyday life Michael Kimmelman, the prominent "New York Times" writer and a regular contributor to "The New York Review of Books," is known as a deep and graceful writer across the disciplines of art and music and also as a pianist who understands something about the artist's sensibility from the inside. Readers have come to expect him not only to fill in their knowledge about art but also to inspire them to think about connections between art and the larger world - which is to say, to think more like an artist. Kimmelman's many years of contemplating and writing about art have brought him to this wise, wide-ranging, and long-awaited book.It explores art as life's great passion, revealing what we can learn of life through pictures and sculptures and the people who make them. It assures us that art - points of contact with the exceptional that are linked straight to the heart - can be found almost anywhere and everywhere if only our eyes are opened enough to recognize it. Kimmelman regards art, like all serious human endeavors, as a passage through which a larger view of life may come more clearly into focus. His book is a kind of adventure or journey.It carries the message that many of us may not yet have learned how to recognize the art in our own lives. To do so is something of an art itself. A few of the characters Kimmelman describes, like Bonnard and Chardin, are great artists. But others are explorers and obscure obsessives, paint-by-numbers enthusiasts, amateur shutterbugs, and collectors of strange odds and ends. Yet others, like Charlotte Solomon, a girl whom no one considered much of an artist but who secretly created a masterpiece about the world before her death in Auschwitz, have reserved spots for themselves in history, or not, with a single work that encapsulates a whole life.Kimmelman reminds us of the Wunderkammer, the cabinet of wonders - the rage in seventeenth-century Europe and a metaphor for the art of life. Each drawer of the cabinet promises something curious and exotic, instructive and beautiful, the cabinet being a kind of ideal, self-contained universe that makes order out of the chaos of the world. "The Accidental Masterpiece" is a kind of literary Wunderkammer, filled with lively surprises and philosophical musings. It will inspire readers to imagine their own personal cabinet of wonders.
Product Details

About the Author

Michael Kimmelman is chief art critic of The New York Times and a contributor to The New York Review of Books. A native New Yorker, he was educated at Yale and Harvard, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize, and is the author of Portraits: Talking with Artists at the Met, the Modern, the Louvre and Elsewhere, which was named as a notable book of the year by the Times and The Washington Post. He has written and hosted various television shows about the arts. He is also a pianist.

Reviews

The chief art critic of the New York Times, Kimmelman (Portraits) delivers an uplifting art-is-good-for-you message that is surprisingly easy to swallow. Intelligent but not obscure, warm but not intrusively personal, Kimmelman manages in 10 chapters to cover a lot of ground, with a working definition of "art" that goes far beyond what's found in galleries and museums. The reader encounters not only the likes of Pierre Bonnard and Matthew Barney but Hugh Francis Hicks, a serious collector of lightbulbs, and Frank Hurley, whose miraculously preserved images of the 1914 Antarctic Endurance expedition are as haunting as any "art." This is Kimmelman's point: though passionately concerned with "gallery" art, he is more concerned with the rewards of aesthetic experience, how the attentiveness we bring to art can help to make a "daily masterpiece" of ordinary life. Kimmelman's enthusiasm is infectious; he has an impressive ability to incorporate recent artistic trends into his argument; the chapter on "The Art of the Pilgrimage," for instance, discusses the earth art of Michael Heizer and the minimalism of Donald Judd with a clarity that doesn't shortchange the work's difficulty. If Proust can change your life, so can Bonnard. (Aug.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

In this ten-essay collection filled with various platitudes and deep thoughts about the connections between life and art, Kimmelman, chief art critic for the New York Times (Portraits: Talking with Artists at the Met, the Modern, the Louvre, and Elsewhere), examines the theme of the accidental masterpiece-a universal, "creative impulse, a deep compulsion pursued to the nth degree" that when recognized by individuals renders their lives artful and results in art that resembles lives. Relating to the lives and works of famous and lesser-known artists and literary figures-e.g., Pierre Bonnard, Paul C?zanne, Charlotte Salomon, Lewis Carroll, Nancy Holt, and Matthew Barney-as well as to those of explorers, obsessives, enthusiasts, amateurs, collectors, and others, Kimmelman successfully argues that art can be found in ordinary experiences as well as extraordinary ones. By way of several diverse examples and an encompassing literary framework, he provides readers with valuable insight into his subjects' lives and works as well as into their own. Kitschy and candid yet thought-provoking and uniquely awesome, this stimulating but not-too-scholarly book is recommended for most public libraries and some special and academic libraries. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 4/15/05.]-Cheryl Ann Lajos, Free Lib. of Philadelphia Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.

"A book that captures very well the enigmatic status of art and how we might approach it. . . . Kimmelman [is] a knowledgeable guide to all sorts of places we'd never have though of going." --Adrian Searle, The New York Times "Michael Kimmelman writes that 'the world is full of amazing surprises.' As it happens, this book is one of them. Knowledgeable, charming, thoughtful, lucid, unpretentious writing about art? A critic who actually leaves his room and comes back with stories about interesting people and places in the real world? And if that weren't amazing and surprising enough, Kimmelman is on an earnest old-school quest, determined to convince us (in his charming and unpretentious way) that modern art is not a cynical game, that we can glimpse all kinds of improbable marvels and wonders in all sorts of places if we take the time to look and feel and think. I am grateful for The Accidental Masterpiece." --Kurt Anderson, New York Times-bestselling writer and host of the Peabody-winning radio program Studio 360 "I get more from reading Michael Kimmelman--the dry wit, the elegant conviviality of tone, the broad range and the underlying toughness of judgment--than from any art critic writing now. He really knows art and, what's more, really enjoys it. And he brings that enjoyment to the reader in a way that you can't fail to share. He's neither a jargoneer nor an art world nerd: He is deeply immersed in life, its pleasures, and the winding, unexpected ways in which art puts you in touch with both. Chapeau!" --Robert Hughes, awarding-winning art critic, writer, and director "Michael Kimmelman, one of the most brilliant and sensitive critics of our time, in this book presents a surprisingly refreshing view of art and artists. From the beginning to the end, he exercises his wry sense of humor to explain something that is deeply insightful of our culture. His book shows how you may be an artist too, without even knowing. Read, and see yourself in this mirror of our contemporary and future society. You'll love it." --Yoko Ono

Ask a Question About this Product More...
Write your question below:
Look for similar items by category
People also searched for
How Fishpond Works
Fishpond works with suppliers all over the world to bring you a huge selection of products, really great prices, and delivery included on over 25 million products that we sell. We do our best every day to make Fishpond an awesome place for customers to shop and get what they want — all at the best prices online.
Webmasters, Bloggers & Website Owners
You can earn a 5% commission by selling The Accidental Masterpiece: On the Art of Life and Vice Versa on your website. It's easy to get started - we will give you example code. After you're set-up, your website can earn you money while you work, play or even sleep! You should start right now!
Authors / Publishers
Are you the Author or Publisher of a book? Or the manufacturer of one of the millions of products that we sell. You can improve sales and grow your revenue by submitting additional information on this title. The better the information we have about a product, the more we will sell!
Item ships from and is sold by Fishpond.com, Inc.
Back to top