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Oskar Kokoschka: Letters 1905-1976 Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Thames & Hudson (May 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0500015287
  • ISBN-13: 978-0500015285
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 6.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,768,605 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Throughout his life, Austrian painter Oskar Kokoschka (1886-1980) kept up voluminous correspondence with friends and lovers as well as with some of the most important artists, composers, musicians and political leaders of the 20th century. The letters in this volume (selected by his wife, Olda, and his close friend, Marnau, a novelist and translator) span his student days, his youthful love affairs (particularly his liaison with Alma Mahler, widow of the composer Gustav Mahler), his military service during WW I, his travels, his exile in London during WW II and his mature artistry. Although they reveal little about Kokoschka's working methods, the letters are interesting, for in them he poured out his feelings about the political, intellectual and cultural events of his time with the passion and intensity that characterizes his expressionist paintings. The book would be more satisfactory, however, if the explanatory notes, short biographies of the recipients and chronology of the artist's life (all of which are essential for an understanding of the letters) had not been relegated to the back of the volume. Illustrations not seen by PW.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

Kokoschka's (1886-1980) historical significance has long been generally recognized, but, curiously, few specialist studies on his work are currently available. The artist, whose career spanned seven decades, was molded in turn-of-the-century Vienna, where he was closely linked to the expressionists. An outspoken critic of Hitler, he was the second largest "contributor" to the Nazi's landmark "Degenerate Art" exhibition of 1937. The current selection of his letters, supported by explanatory notes, biographies of the recipients, and a chronology of Kokoschka's life, is abridged from a four-volume German edition published in Dusseldorf (1984-88). While many influential people number among the correspondents, of special interest are letters to Alma Mahler and to Herbert Read, Augustus John, and Sir Kenneth Clark, with whom he corresponded after taking refuge in England. Oskar Kokoschka is a significant contribution to existing scholarship on this fascinating artist and the first to treat his late work at length. The volume is based on an exhibition catalog published in German that accompanied a major retrospective of Kokoschka's paintings last summer at the Kunstforum, Vienna. It contains a broad selection of paintings from all periods. An extensive biography illustrated with photographs, a selected bibliography, and a list of exhibitions since 1945 enable the reader to place Kokoschka's works within the context of his life and cultural milieu.--For serious art collections.
- Russell T. Clement, Brigham Young Univ. Lib., Provo, Ut.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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