Friday, January 2, 2009

"Obsessive Efforts": Art as Autobiography

Pierre Dourthe, BELLMER: le principe de perversion $99.00 (Out of Print!)

This French-language monograph includes some of the most beautiful, perverse, and absorbing of Hans Bellmer's work. Bellmer, far from the 1930's artistic circles of Paris, worked largely in seclusion. His works reveal a complex, at times disturbing, interest in youth and femininity. The artist often discussed "his dolls" as a type of intensive self-analysis and autobiography, as evidenced in this fascinating book.

Niki de Saint Phalle, Traces: Remembering 1930-1949 $15.95

Niki de Saint Phalle was a self-taught artist and former model, who began painting in the 1950's. In some ways comparable to Bellmer, de Saint Phalle explored the concept of women and their roles in society, and also created a series of life-size "dolls". Many of de Saint Phalle's works, like this self-designed autobiography, feature reactions to her past that are both direct and open to interpretation.

Both titles available for purchase at Brickbat Books

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