What is so chilling about the front and back covers of MARK LOMBARDI: GLOBAL NETWORKS is not that "George W. Bush, Harken Energy, and Jackson Stephens, c. 1979-1990" (5th version, 1999) illustrates the nexus of big oil and terrorists, a notion we have become "used to," but that the direct nexus of Osama bin Laden and Big Oil is not found at Bush & Co. but at James R. Bath, whose political patronage flows not only from the Bushes but from Democrat and leading U.S. Senator (now retired) Lloyd Bentsen and his son Lan. The ability of big business to coöpt governance knows no party bounds.
The essay and annotations accompanying GLOBAL NETWORKS, by eminent art historian and critic Robert Hobbs, are a mating of the post-modernist perspective with a body of work whose subject matter happens to be the subject matter of post-modernist criticism - power structures.
Lombardi, who had been an abstract artist, became interested in the interrelationships of global players during the Savings and Loan scandal of the early nineties. At the time, he lived in Houston, so it's no surprise that he found a ripe field in the myriad, widespread and incestuous linkages of the oil industry.
Hobbs cites Herbert Marcuse as Lombardi's acknowledged aesthetical mentor. Marcuse was a "neo-Marxist" philosopher who asserted the sexual basis for class suppression in America and who became a darling of the New Left in the sixties. He has not fared well with the subsequent structuralist schools, who dismiss Marx and in turn Marcuse, and their respective dialectics, as obsolete.Read more ›
I really like Mark Lombardi's artwork, but buyer beware--the dimensions of this book are a mere 11 x 9.2 x 0.4 inches. Mr. Lombardi's work is relatively large by comparison. For this book, his pieces have been shrunk to where it is almost impossible to read what's been written in the nodes of the networks. Each featured piece is instead explained by the authors, with the occasional enlargement of a section for clarification. This seems contrary to the spirit of Mr. Lombardi's work. I was expecting this book to at least have fold-out pages, but no such luck. The artwork is completely subordinate to the authors' verbose text. So if you want to READ about Mark Lombardi and his work, and get a little information design history lesson in too, then this book will do just fine. But if you want to actually LOOK at Mark Lombardi's artwork, look elsewhere. I think I will be reselling this book.
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I recently saw Mark Lombardi's work at the Whitney (NYC) and was thunderstruck, not only be the content, but by the spiderweb of relationships that only great art can provide. Great art, like great comedy, shows us something, that we've been exposed to every day, in a new way that gives us insight into life. Words cannot describe the feeling, the impact, of the events listed, until you see it in his drawings. It's as though you've been allowed to crawl into the mind of a savant.
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I agree with all the reviews that this book is a vital piece of the global puzzle and assists us in understanding the interlocking nature of our world, which is speciously disjointed and perhaps intentionally compartmentalized. I even agree with the one star review which states that a genius like mark deserved larger dimensions for his work. I believe to reiterate these points would be redundant, so i only write this review to warn people to look elsewhere to buy this book before considering the exorbitant asking prices of the vendors above. Mark's work is priceless and will continue to become scarcer because of the veracious revelations contained within them. Someday it may warrant a price above $1000, but i purchased it brand new from another site for $30. Best wishes in your search for truth.