In 1966, Piri Halasz became the first woman within living memory to write a cover story for Time (and not just any cover story, either: the notorious one on "Swinging London"). With wit and wisdom, she provides a glimpse into her "red-diaper" childhood, as well as reporting on her climb at Time from research to the writing staff. Vividly, she describes her controversial career as a female journalist during the sixties, offering an inside view of newsweekly rivalries during that tempestuous decade. Halasz then moves on to her initiation into the art world, her lively interaction with some of its most distinguished denizens and her immersion in graduate school. She concludes with what she has learned about art, art history, and history itself since the early eighties, applying that knowledge to better understand the twenty-first century. Through sharing her life story, Halasz encourages others to remain open to new experiences, to try different ways of seeing, and to use creativity to tackle hurdles.
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What People are Saying About This
"A fresh and revealing account of the American art, art history, and journalism of the past half-century through the eyes of a participant....."--(Terry Fenton, Artist, Author, Kenneth Noland, Sir Anthony Caro)
"A fascinating, very personal account of the author's wide-ranging experience in journalism, art criticism, politics and, not least of all, self-examination. Early on, A Memoir of Creativity takes us deep inside New York's publishing world, which Halasz recreates for us with authority and detail. Her discussion of the chain of command, the levels of creative activity, and the interplay of personal and professional motives at Time may very well become a classic essay on how a great magazine was produced. Equally impressive is the author's quest to define and clarify abstract expressionism amidst the many important movements in modern art. A Memoir especially comes to life when Halasz recounts her dealings with the leading artists and art critics of her time. At once informative, witty, outrageously honest and distinguished by just the right amount of irony, this book should be of interest to many readers."--(Leigh Winser, Professor of English, Seton Hall University)
"A native New Yorker, Halasz was one of the first women elevated from researcher to writer at Time, in the years just before the feminist movement of the 1970s. ...this fascinating chronicle of an intellectual coming of age in America tells how.... she eventually finds her way to her current work as a passionate - and fierce - art critic, refreshingly free of the dour academic mentality that paralyzes so much current writing about art. Her newsletter From the Mayor's Doorstep is read throughout the art world, in the U.S., Canada and Europe."--(Katherine B. Crum, President, Art Museum Partnership)
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I opened A Memoir of Creativity by Piri Halasz, lost myself in it, closed it only for one night's sleep before opening it again and finishing what turned out to be a rivetting read! Art history, social history, and a poignant personal memoir: for me the last quarter completed the wide circle. Well done!
It was a page turner. I loved it and couldn't put it down for at least 3/4 of the book. I was least interested was the political aspects. I liked the way she approached the discussion of the creative mind at work and her personal experience learning art history.