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The Love Lives of the Artists: Five Stories of Creative Intimacy Hardcover – October 25, 2011

ISBN-13: 978-1582437750 ISBN-10: 1582437750

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Counterpoint (October 25, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1582437750
  • ISBN-13: 978-1582437750
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 8.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,597,878 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for The Love Lives of the Artists

"A captivating exploration of artists seeking personal happiness amid the turmoil of professional success." —Kirkus

"If you happen to enjoy, say, Kahlo’s paintings or admire Steiglitz’s work with artists in his galleries and Camera Work, and are curious to learn about their personal lives, this is a handily informative book. On the other hand, if you know nothing at all about any of these artists but are interested in love relationships between artists in general, this book is likewise informative and worth your while." —Patrick James Dunagan, Newpages.com

"Bullen tells these stories with cool passion: Just the facts, ma’am, but the facts are plenty fascinating . . . Bullen concentrates on the aftermaths of those meetings, and the inspirations and wreckage that ensued. He reports scrupulously and writes well, and hints only briefly at his own feelings about his artists’ actions and moral decisions. As a result, he’s created a kind of moral mirror, allowing readers to see bits of themselves, or at least bits of their own attitudes, in what they read." —Bob Hicks, artscatter.com

"In The Love Lives of the Artists, Daniel Bullen examines the intersection of art and amorous love in the affairs of five artistic couples who had open relationships at a time when the sanctity of marriage, as an institution, adhered to more conventional expectations. Artistic and erotic freedom is at the core of this complex, philosophically insightful book." —Kathleen Gerard, blogger at Reading Between the Lines

"This is a fascinating book, addressing the intricate subject of intimacy, Eros, and creativity. Where is the muse and who is the muse when art is being produced? And what is the price for passion that fuels inspiration? This exploration into the love lives of artists will open endless conversations among creators, partners, and lovers, as well as readers and voyeurs!" —Jan Freeman, Editor, Paris Press

“Bullen tells these fascinating stories with relish and with a remarkably balanced eye. He speaks to our modern ambivalence about marriage and monogamy by tracing its cultural roots across a century, as expressed—and creatively addressed—by five exceptional artist-lovers. An important addition to the conversation about the viability of various alternatives to monogamy.” —Suzanne Benack, Professor of Psychology, Union College

“Bullen describes, in clear, concise prose, the spoken, unspoken and bespoke romantic lives of five famous and famously articulate couples, whose marriages were as open as their minds, and as receptive to new passions. Their exceptional passions transcend what marriage was then, or is now, to serve as examples, in extremis, by which we might measure ourselves. A first class book and a fascinating read.” –Pete Nelson, author of I Thought You Were Dead: A Love Story

“The amours of some of our greatest artists are explored here with balance and understanding. Bullen takes a serious look at both the beauty and the wreckage that results from the artist’s sense of exceptionalism, and transports us into the bedrooms and the ambitions of these titanic artist-couples. Totally engrossing.” –Amity Gaige, author of The Folded World and O My Darling

“Bullen draws from life the lines of force that animate creative love and creative work.” –Cary Tennis, author of Since You Asked: The Best of Salon.com’s Cary Tennis

About the Author

Daniel Bullen grew up in the suburbs of New York City, and took a Ph.D. in American literature before writing The Love Lives of the Artists, his first book. He lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Michael Carolan on October 25, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In each of the five love stories, Daniel Bullen writes evocatively about the meanings of marriage, art and intimacy, in the lives of these artists who came of age in the 20th century, when love--and everything--was changing. Mr. Bullen follows the artists' development as lovers closely--from the self-centeredness and self sacrifice for art to the emotional connection with a fellow artist to its complications with lovers, the sexual passion and its revulsion. He follows their relationships through public notoriety and private monstrosity; through the degrees of commitment and of artistic ambition; back through the childhood traumas and forward through the addictions, obsessions, and manias, to finally, and above all, to the enduring love itself.

In crisp prose, compelling scholarship, and in the creators' own voices, Mr. Bullen sheds new light for biography writing itself--mining the creative process of intimate relationships and connecting it to the artistic endeavor--messy one minute and beautifully eternal the next. He highlights the passion that drove these quintessential truth-seekers together and apart, playing such an organic part of the creations themselves--the art and literature and thought that so changed the world. Art that, as Mr. Bullen puts it, at once "became a kind of offering, to eternity and to culture, for the things they had not been able to compose within their lives."

This book is for everyone aspiring to live their lives creatively--not just writers or thinkers, but anyone whose marriage is a palette on which each partner paints his or her ever-evolving, creative lives.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Janine Roberts, professor, University of Massachusetts on March 9, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Daniel Bullen writes beautifully and lucidly about complex psychological issues and relationships, as well as art, writing, and the creative life. Bravo!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Baer on November 18, 2011
Format: Hardcover
There is no love that burns deeper than the love of true artists. These 5 stories really grab you and bring their dynamics to life. I loved it!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Intimate and amazing. Slow to start but once you get past the first chapter you are hooked. Maintaining a primary relationship while contributing great art is almost impossible.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Cynthia Blachly on November 24, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Too "scholarly" - too dry - not interesting - and this should have been a great book!
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