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

An exploration of the source of artistic inspiration in poets, jazz musicians, writers...From Rimbaud to Lorca, Hirsch examines the emotional power of creativity and its results, covering the creation of music and poetry in a completely original way. This power is called "duende", a Spanish word meaning roughly "dark angel", and is the force that inspires artists to create their most powerful works.

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Review:

PRAISE FOR"HOW TO READ A POEM""Laudable . . . The answer Hirsch gives to the question of How to Read a Poem is: Ecstatically."--"The Boston Book Review""A lovely book, full of joy and wisdom."--"The Baltimore Sun""Hirsch takes us forcefully through his love of verse, with welcome technical asides and biographical detours along the way."--"Publishers Weekly""Hirsch, a truly gifted poet and scholar, brings the full heat of his literary passion to this enlightening and deeply moving journey into the heart of poetry."--"Booklist""Hirsch is so steeped in literature, painting, and music, and so voracious in his pursuit of the revelations art delivers, that he's able to articulate the seemingly ineffable through brillant critical analyses and empathic insights into artists' lives....[a] unique, exhilarating, and virtuosic performance." -"Booklist"

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.
"

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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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