Did he really say that?

The kind of humor I like is the thing that makes me laugh for five seconds and think for ten minutes = GEORGE CARLIN...Stained glass, engraved glass, frosted glass–give me plain glass = JOHN FOWLES...Music is the mathematics of the gods = PYTHAGORAS...Nothing is more fluid than language = R.L.SWIHART

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Bellini, Yale, Abrams & Carol

The text was imported from New Haven

Colin T. Eisler
Yale 1952
Ph.D. Harvard

Colin is the Robert Lehman Professor of Fine Arts at the Institute of Fine Arts in New York City. Sterling Library contains seventeen of his books. Four of these are in this exhibit.

The Genius of Jacopo Bellini (Harry Abrams Inc. 1989) is my favorite book. Unavailable since their splendid, costly two volume facsimile, a lavish labor of love by Prince Victor Goloubew (Brussels and Paris 1902), this was given to me by my wife shortly after we were married in 1960. I had long hoped to issue an affordable one volume edition of all the drawings by Jacopo Bellini along with his other drawings and paintings. Most of the drawings are in two great notebooks in the British Library and the Louvre.

By using infra-red reflectography for the British Museum drawings, that recent device led to many important discoveries, first published in my book. Instead of reproducing the Venetian's hundreds of pages once again as they appear in the Notebooks, which is what Goloubew had done with such care, I made narratives of their contents in word and image, integrating the Paris and London books' contents, organizing these 'filmed chapters' into such subjects as the Old and New Testaments, lives of saints, knightly life, genre, and 'Venice observed'.

Graduate students at the Institute of Fine Arts (where I have taught since 1958), helped with the research, and it is the first book I did using a computer, with Cindy Deith's assistance. Paul Gottlieb, director of Harry Abrams Inc, was a most sympathetic, patient publisher, and Patricia Egan (editor) and Barbara Lyons (picture editor) were as generous as they were expert. That the result is a very beautiful book is of course due to its artist and to the truly superb designer, Carol Ann Robson.

I remain very happy with this publication whose preparation was a pleasure I shall never forget. It was also a privilege to dedicate the book to my dearest friend, M. Roy Fisher, who died all too soon thereafter. Suddenly spying the Italian edition of the The Genius of Jacopo Bellini for sale in a Venetian bookshop window near the Piazza di Marco- the artist's favorite space- left me 'surprised by joy'.

Blogger's Notes
New Haven is separated from Rocky Point by the Long Island Sound. New Haven is in Connecticut–the Nutmeg State–and Rocky Point is in New York–my birth state.
The italics in the book review are mine.
The Lapidary Letter of the previous post inspired (mandated?) this post.

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