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Uncompromising Souls: The Lives and Work of Artist Helen West Heller and Husband Roger Paperback – January 6, 2016
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About the Author
Larry Stanfel, a professor emeritus at the University of Alabama, earned his PhD from Northwestern University. Twice the winner of competitive postdoctoral fellowships for research abroad, he has been listed in Who’s Who in America and was selected for a number of honorary fraternities. He has worked frequently as a consultant to government and private businesses and has been an invited speaker around the world. Presently he and his artist wife, Jane, live on a small ranch in Montana.
He has published three previous books and around eighty articles, most of them peer-reviewed, and several of his poems and stories have appeared in web journals, including a prize-winning story in Enchanted Conversation. He also writes novels, plays, and song lyrics.
Stanfel spent twelve years exhaustively researching the lives and work of Helen West Heller and her husband, Roger, and is considered the world’s leading authority on the pair. His book Uncompromising Souls is a biography of the artist and her eccentric husband.
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Review by Kit Smyth Basquin, PhD
Larry Stanfel, a writer and Professor emeritus at the University of Alabama, grew up in Canton, Illinois, with rumors of an eccentric character, Roger Paul Heller, supposedly married to a New York artist. Heller cluttered his house so much that he had to enter by ladder in the attic! Eventually he ended up in a mental institution. Stanfel fascinated with the rumors about the eccentric Heller, uncovered the story of his wife, Helen West Heller. Stanfel’s biography, The Lives and Work of Artist Helen West Heller and Husband Roger, a tribute to the creativity and drive of the artist, is the definitive work on the couple with extensive research, detailed chronologies, five photographs of the couple, fifty-five reproductions of art, and a bibliography with many primary sources. Helen West Heller (1872—1956) was a printmaker, painter, poet, illustrator, and bookbinder. The Metropolitan Museum of Art owns 182 of her prints, mostly woodcuts, donated in 1955 by a friend who also wrote articles about her, Ernst Harms.