Picasso was born a Spaniard and, so they say, began to draw before he could speak. As an infant he was instinctively attracted to artist’s tools. In early childhood he could spend hours in happy concentration drawing spirals with a sense and meaning known only to himself. At other times, shunning children’s games, he traced his first pictures in the sand. This early self-expression held out promise of a rare gift. Málaga must be mentioned, for it was there, on 25 October 1881, that Pablo Ruiz Picasso was born and it was there that he spent the first ten years of his life. Picasso’s father was a painter and professor at the School of Fine Arts and Crafts. Picasso learnt from him the basics of formal academic art training. Then he studied at the Academy of Arts in Madrid but never finished his degree. Picasso, who was not yet eighteen, had reached the point of his greatest rebelliousness; he repudiated academia’s anemic aesthetics along with realism’s pedestrian prose and, quite naturally, joined those who called themselves modernists, the non-conformist artists and writers, those whom Sabartés called “the élite of Catalan thought” and who were grouped around the artists’ café Els Quatre Gats. During 1899 and 1900 the only subjects Picasso deemed worthy of painting were those which reflected the “final truth”; the transience of human life and the inevitability of death. His early works, ranged under the name of “Blue Period” (1901-1904), consist in blue-tinted paintings influenced by a trip through Spain and the death of his friend, Casagemas. Even though Picasso himself repeatedly insisted on the inner, subjective nature of the Blue Period, its genesis and, especially, the monochromatic blue were for many years explained as merely the results of various aesthetic influences. Between 1905 and 1907, Picasso entered a new phase, called “Rose Period” characterised by a more cheerful style with orange and pink colours. In Gosol, in the summer of 1906 the nude female form assumed an extraordinary importance for Picasso; he equated a depersonalised, aboriginal, simple nakedness with the concept of “woman”. The importance that female nudes were to assume as subjects for Picasso in the next few months (in the winter and spring of 1907) came when he developed the composition of the large painting, Les Demoiselles d’Avignon. Just as African art is usually considered the factor leading to the development of Picasso’s classic aesthetics in 1907, the lessons of Cézanne are perceived as the cornerstone of this new progression. This relates, first of all, to a spatial conception of the canvas as a composed entity, subjected to a certain constructive system. Georges Braque, with whom Picasso became friends in the autumn of 1908 and together with whom he led Cubism during the six years of its apogee, was amazed by the similarity of Picasso’s pictorial experiments to his own. He explained that: “Cubism’s main direction was the materialisation of space.” After his Cubist period, in the 1920s, Picasso returned to a more figurative style and got closer to the surrealist movement. He represented distorted and monstrous bodies but in a very personal style. After the bombing of Guernica during 1937, Picasso made one of his most famous works which starkly symbolises the horrors of that war and, indeed, all wars. In the 1960s, his art changed again and Picasso began looking at the art of great masters and based his paintings on ones by Velázquez, Poussin, Goya, Manet, Courbet and Delacroix. Picasso’s final works were a mixture of style, becoming more colourful, expressive and optimistic. Picasso died in 1973, in his villa in Mougins. The Russian Symbolist Georgy Chulkov wrote: “Picasso’s death is tragic. Yet how blind and naïve are those who believe in imitating Picasso and learning from him. Learning what? For these forms have no corresponding emotions outside of Hell. But to be in Hell means to anticipate death. The Cubists are hardly privy to such unlimited knowledge”.
A visionary work of radical empathy.
Known for immersion journalism that is more immersed than most people are willing to go, and for a prose style that is somehow both fierce and soulful, Jeff Sharlet dives deep into the darkness around us and awaiting us.
This work began when his father had a heart attack; two years later, Jeff, still in his forties, had a heart attack of his own. In the grip of writerly self-doubt, Jeff turned to images, taking snapshots and posting them on Instagram, writing short, true stories that bloomed into documentary. During those two years, he spent a lot of time on the road: meeting strangers working night shifts as he drove through the mountains to see his father; exploring the life and death of Charley Keunang, a once-aspiring actor shot by the police on LA’s Skid Row; documenting gay pride amidst the violent homophobia of Putin’s Russia; passing time with homeless teen addicts in Dublin; and accompanying a lonely woman, whose only friend was a houseplant, on shopping trips.
Early readers have called this book “incantatory,” the voice “prophetic,” in “James Agee’s tradition of looking at the reality of American lives.” Defined by insomnia and late-night driving and the companionship of other darkness-dwellers—night bakers and last-call drinkers, frightened people and frightening people, the homeless, the lost (or merely disoriented), and other people on the margins—This Brilliant Darkness erases the boundaries between author, subject, and reader to ask: how do people live with suffering?
Real crimes are stranger than fiction!
Leopold and Loeb were two wealthy law students who could buy anything. But they wanted the one thing that no amount of money could buy: life.
They wanted to create the Perfect Crime--to kidnap and murder a 14-year-old boy for the thrill of getting away with murder.
The crime was so horrifying that even legendary filmmaker Alfred Hitchcock took notice, and directed his version of the story: Rope. But the real story of the Rope is much more brutal and suspenseful than even Hitchcock could do justice to.
Read the real history in this thrilling true crime book.
“I'm done hurting her. She's been hurt enough. It's time I set her free...”
Once upon a time, I wished to go home and forget.
Now, I’m strong and ready to fight.
Seduced and claimed, Elder no longer just demands my voice, he commands me to be a thief like him.
But he offers me things I shouldn’t want, favours I should run from.
In return for his protection, I’m ordered to steal enough pennies and dollars to buy back my freedom.
Only, we both aren’t prepared for how he changes me, evolves me.
And now, it’s my turn to learn about him.
Book 3 in the USA Today Bestselling Romance, Dollar Series
Read the shocking real stroy behind Hitchcock's classic film!
The Wrong Man tells the incredible tale of an innocent man falsely accused of a crime. That in itself is hardly an unusual story, but in this case, a string of unlikely coincidences and sheer bad luck built a seemingly airtight case against him.
It seemed that the entire justice system was deaf to his pleas and all too willing to ignore the evidence his defenders had worked so hard to unearth. In the end, it was only a slip by the real perpetrator that proved his innocence.
While the movie certainly had its share of truth, it was still a movie, and parts were fabricated.
This book tells the real story behind the movie.
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The Birds was different from most of Hitchcock's work.
For admirers of Hitchcock, The Birds also raises disturbing questions about the director as a person. He was a complex and confusing character in many ways, and perhaps it's not surprising that someone who built a career out of creating suspense and fear on-screen might also have had some darker sides to his personal life.
Beyond the details of the story and how it came to be filmed, though, one of the most interesting questions about The Birds is why Hitchcock made it in the first place. It took its title from a short story by English author Daphne du Maurier, but beyond the basic idea of people being attacked by birds, it didn't take much else from it. The storyline was pure Hitchcock. So where did it come from?
It turns out that his inspiration was a strange and alarming incident that happened just a few miles from his home in California.
This book uncovers the truth behind the plot as well as other factoids that fascinate any fan of the film.
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