Friday, 28 December 2007

Book Review

Above: Nicki Greenberg's incredible and painstaking graphic adaptation of F.Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. In Greenberg's imagination, those tragic and beautiful symbols of the 1920's become a series of wonderful alien and underwater creatures, who tell the entire story in a series of gorgeous vignettes. One of the most universally loved novels is now even more of a treat to read, and re-read. (Melbourne, 2007.)

Above: a great glamorous monograph on the tres-hip American artist Elizabeth Peyton (New York, 2005), who is all of 43 years old. Peyton draws and paints famous people (mostly men) she admires in a style that is somewhat idealising, highly varied in quality and incredibly appealing. Best of all, her work sends art critics into a spin because they want to believe that she has a higher theoretical purpose to her practice than an overgrown 13-year-old school girl drawing in order to possess her unattainable objects of desire.

For example, above: Kurt Writing (Newsweek), 2002, Peyton's portrait of Kurt Cobain, presumably taken from a photograph published in that journal. There is alot of love in this picture, not to mention skill: it just makes me want to take my pencils out, play E.P. (not to mention David Hockney, whom she cites as an influence) and draw all the boys that I like. Watch out male readers, you might see yourselves here one day: if you're lucky.

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