Overview

This is the first book to tell the inspiring story of near tragedy and ultimate triumph behind the dazzling work of one of today's most respected and best-loved artists. Chuck Close is one of the most acclaimed American artists to emerge since Andy Warhol. His larger-than-life portraits look out from the walls of museums and galleries around the globe. His virtuosity and variety of technique, combined with the ambition and accessibility of his chosen subject matter the portrait re-invented on a heroic scale has ...
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Chuck Close: Life

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Overview

This is the first book to tell the inspiring story of near tragedy and ultimate triumph behind the dazzling work of one of today's most respected and best-loved artists. Chuck Close is one of the most acclaimed American artists to emerge since Andy Warhol. His larger-than-life portraits look out from the walls of museums and galleries around the globe. His virtuosity and variety of technique, combined with the ambition and accessibility of his chosen subject matter the portrait re-invented on a heroic scale has made him a great favorite with the public and has won him the respect of his peers. Chuck Close has achieved fame, yet his full story has never been told until now. Author Christopher Finch has known Close since the late 1960s when the artist was creating his first masterpieces in an unheated SoHo loft. Finch chronicles Close's childhood battles with illness and dyslexia and his rise to the pinnacle of the art world. At the age of 48 he was struck down by an occluded spinal artery that left him a partial quadriplegic. With extraordinary determination, Close overcame this potentially career-ending disability, not only learning to paint again but producing work of extraordinary richness that equals or surpasses his previous achievements. With style and authority, Finch reveals the human reality behind Close's visually eloquent but eternally silent portraits.

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Editorial Reviews

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Contemporary American artist Chuck Close works on such a large scale that his giant photorealist paintings emerge from subtle pixelizations to confront us with their unblinking humanity. Close has been forced to confront such stark realities himself: In 1988, at the age of 48, he was struck down by a spinal artery occlusion that left him in a wheelchair for life as a partial quadriplegic. This biography is the first to centrally address "The Event" and the radical adjustments it necessitated in the making of Close's art. An inspiring biography written by a longtime friend of the artist.

Publishers Weekly
Conceived as a companion to the 2007 collection of images, Chuck Close: Work, Finch presents in this volume a more thorough traditional biography. Though an honored and prolific artist today, Close's road to success hasn't been glamorous. Plagued by learning disabilities and health problems throughout his youth, Close was encouraged to express his thoughts and feelings creatively and learned to faithfully trust the artistic process. He "showed a marked ability to depend on himself" and was able to create visual solutions to logical problems. These skills aided him greatly in receiving a Master's Degree from Yale and gaining recognition in the 1970s for his large scale photo realistic portraits (a term the artist dislikes) of friends and family. In 1988, following several occurrences of chest pain as well as a severe respiratory infection, Close suffered what he calls "The Event," a spinal stroke, which caused temporary quadriplegia. Through incorporating art into his physical therapy, he was able to regain the ability to paint. Close says art saved his life, but the book illustrates well his tenacity and persistence to overcome obstacles, with art functioning more as a companion than a savior. Photos.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9783641083410
  • Publisher: E-Books der Verlagsgruppe Random House GmbH
  • Publication date: 6/27/2012
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Sales rank: 846,680
  • File size: 8 MB

Meet the Author

Christopher Finch was born in Guernsey, studied at Chelsea Art School and has written for Art & Artists, Art International and British Vogue. Finch met Chuck Close when he was Curator at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. Since then he has written dozens of books on art, popular culture, and social history, His most recent work is the monograph Chuck Close: Work (Prestel). ISBN: 978-3-7913-3676-3, price GBP50, reprinting April 2010.

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