Cy Twombly. An Artist’s Bookshelf Review.



I’ve had a long love of books, and some of my most prized books are art books. This is a review of books from my collection that can be found on shelves in my studio. I will provide links when possible.

Cy Twombly.

Cy Twombly.

I was saddened to learn that Cy Twombly passed away on Tuesday, July 5, 2011. The critic Robert Hughes described him brilliantly as “the Third Man, a shadowy figure, beside that vivid duumvirate of his friends Jasper Johns and Robert Rauschenberg.”

A couple of years ago I was lucky enough to get a copy of Cy Twombly: Cycles and Seasons, published by the Tate in conjunction with his retrospective at the Tate Modern in 2008, it is a beautifully designed book covering all periods of his long carer. Edited by Nicholas Serota, with essays by Nicholas Cullinan, Tacita Dean, and Richard Shiff. There is an interesting interview between Cy Twombly and Nicholas Serota in the book that begins with Twombly’s early formation and interests as artist that I particularly enjoyed.

Twombly is a difficult artist when first experienced, and the first time I saw his work I really didn’t know what I was looking at. Was it some kind of joke or the work of a mad man? Over time I’ve come to admire this great artist, and I suppose what really won me over to his work was his Nini’s paintings of 1971. they were painted in tribute to Nini Pirandeelo who was the wife of Twombly’s Roman gallerist, they really are beautiful gestures.

Is is strange to love a book? All my life I’ve escaped into books, and it excites me to see my children developing a deep love of books and art. Looking through this book again tonight really does bring back that thrill I get when I’m enjoying a book. I love this beautiful book, and the art of Twombly has made the world a better place.

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