Between Lives: An Artist and Her World

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W. W. Norton & Company, Aug 22, 2011 - Biography & Autobiography
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The life and times of one of our most enchanting artists; a twentieth-century fairy tale, lovingly remembered and luminously told.

Fourteen years ago, the artist Dorothea Tanning published Birthday, a collection of reminiscences. Now she has expanded it into a memoir of her journey through the last century as confidant, collaborator, and muse to some of its most inspired minds and personalities: a diverse assemblage that ranges from the fathers of dada and surrealism to Virgil Thompson, George Balanchine, Alberto Giacometti, Dylan Thomas, Truman Capote, Joan Miró, James Merrill, and many more. At its center is the relationship, tenderly rendered, between Tanning and her famed husband, the enigmatic surrealist Max Ernst.

Whether recalling the poignant presence of her friend Joseph Cornell or simply marveling at the facades along a Venice canal, "their filmy reflections fluttering in the dirty canal like fragile altar cloths hung out to dry," Tanning's writing is beguiling, wry, and shot through with the same eye for pregnant detail and immanent magic that marks her art.
 

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Contents

Headlong
13
Before and Always
59
Flight
93
An Artist Remembers
103
Cactus and Stars
137
Paris with a Patina
159
In the Garden of France
221
Provence and a House
249
Plummeted Bird
285
A Time Suspended
295
Unfinished Picture
329
Veils and Verities
347
Acknowledgments
365
Index
367
Copyright

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About the author (2011)

Dorothea Tanning's painting and sculpture rank among the most inventive of any living American artist. Her poetry has appeared in The New Republic, Partisan Review, and The Paris Review, among many other publications, and was included in The Best American Poetry 2000. She lives in New York City.

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