The Demon and the Angel: Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration

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9780151005383: The Demon and the Angel: Searching for the Source of Artistic Inspiration

A work of art, whether a painting, a dance, a poem, or a jazz composition, can be admired in its own right. But how does the artist actually create his or her work? What is the source of an artist's inspiration? What is the force that impels the artist to set down a vision that becomes art?
In this groundbreaking book, poet and critic Edward Hirsch explores the concept of duende, that mysterious, highly potent power of creativity that results in a work of art. It has been said that Laurence Olivier had it, and so did Ernest Hemingway, but Maurice Evans and John O'Hara did not. Marlon Brando had it but squandered it. Billie Holiday and Bessie Smith had it, and so did Miles Davis.
From Federico García Lorca's wrestling with darkness as he discovered the fountain of words within himself to Martha Graham's creation of her most emotional dances, from the canvases of Robert Motherwell to William Blake's celestial visions, Hirsch taps into the artistic imagination and explains, in terms illuminating and emotional, how different artists respond to the power and demonic energy of creative impulse.
A masterful tour of the minds and thoughts
of writers, poets, painters, and musicians, including
Paul Klee
Federico García Lorca
Robert Johnson
Miles Davis
Billie Holiday
Louis Armstrong
T. S. Eliot
Ezra Pound
Wallace Stevens
Charles Baudelaire
Herman Melville
Nathaniel Hawthorne
William Blake
Rainer Maria Rilke
Arthur Rimbaud
Walter Benjamin
Mark Rothko
Robert Motherwell
Anthony Hecht
Benny Goodman
Ella Fitzgerald
William Meredith
Sylvia Plath
Jackson Pollock

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From the Back Cover:

Paul Klee * Robert Johnson * Billie Holiday * T.S. Eliot * Wallace Stevens * Baudelaire * Herman Melville * Rainer Maria Rilke * Rimbaud * Sylvia Plath * Jackson Pollock * Ella Fitzgerald * Ezra Pound * W.B. YeatsA work of art, whether a painting, a dance, a poem, or a jazz composition, can be admired in its own right. But how does the artist actually create his or her work? What is the source of an artist's inspiration? What is the force that impels the artist to set down a vision that becomes art?
In this groundbreaking book, poet and critic Edward Hirsch explores the concept of duende, the mysterious, highly potent power of creativity that results in a work of art. From Federico Garcia Lorca's wrestling with darkness as he discovered the fountain of words within himself to Martha Graham's creation of her most emotional dances, from the canvases of Robert Motherwell to William Blake's celestial visions, Hirsch taps into the artistic imagination and explains, in terms illuminating and emotional, how different artists respond to the power and demonic energy of creative impulse. Hirsch's passionate exploration of the creative process is an inspiration in itself.
"Unique, exhilarating, and virtuosic. . . . [Hirsch] is able to articulate the seemingly ineffable through brilliant critical analyses and empathic insights into artists' lives. . . . Hirsch himself is imbued with the soulful spirit he celebrates, and its 'dark radiance' shimmers in every inspired page." --Donna Seaman, Booklist
Edward Hirsch is the author of many books, including five books of poetry. He also writes a weekly poetry column for the Washington Post Book World. He has received a Guggenheim Fellowship, the National Book Critics Circle award, the Prix de Rome, and a MacArthur Fellowship. He is president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation and lives in New York City.
"

About the Author:

Edward Hirsch is the author of five books of poetry, as well as the acclaimed How to Read a Poem. A frequent contributor to leading magazines and periodicals, including the New Yorker, DoubleTake, and American Poetry Review, he has received the Prix de Rome, a Guggenheim Fellowship, an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award for Literature, a MacArthur Fellowship, and the National Book Critics Circle Award. He teaches at the University of Houston.

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Hirsch, Edward
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EDWARD HIRSCH
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Book Description Harcourt March 2002, 2002. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. At root, duende is that charm or ghost, that mysterious and potent power to attract and create. Spanish poet Federico Garcia Lorca declares ''Whatever has black sounds, has duende. These 'black sounds' are the mystery.'' Ralph Waldo Emerson affirms but contrasts, ''Draw out of thee that dream-power which every night shows thee is thine own; a poweraby virtue of which a man is the conductor of the whole river of electricity.'' Delineating these ''black'' and ''white'' lights as alternately demon and angel of the artist's work, Edward Hirsch explores the part inspiration plays in producing great art. His subject trips the minds and works of poets, painters and musicians including Mark Rothko, Rilke, Blake, Milosz, Plath, Melville, Ella Fitzgerald, William Carlos Williams, Marina Tsvetaeva, Miles Davis and Paul Klee. Not all of these sought duende, and Hirsch accedes to ''an authentic American art that lives finely within its means and limits, and thereby contributes to our artistic health.'' Yet his thrust here is the artists ''who use their bodies to throw themselves into the present tense, who crave precipices,'' and one can't deny his delight in fleshing out the metaphors necessary for the exploration of such a treatise. His prose seems to at least tap into the current of these artists if not maintain its own substantive energy: ''Where is the angel? It is burning on rooftopsagathering its strength in railroad yards at sunset that are tinged with immaterial reds, ghostly bluesaAnd where is the duende? It is flinging itself into the vast night. Look for it hiding under your boot soles.'' Keep your pen and notebook handy. This book will make you want to jot down names and read more. Bookseller Inventory # 20070607108946

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Book Description Harcourt Brace (New York), 2002. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Dust Jacket Condition: New. 1st Edition. First edition, first printing. Hardbound. Fine in a fine dust jacket. A tight, clean copy, new and unread. NOT price-clipped. Comes with archival-quality mylar dust jacket protector. Shipped in well padded box. POETS. Bookseller Inventory # poets-10

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