Art Book Reviews

Art Book Reviews by Stuart Bush

As an artist, it is common to learn from your own mistakes, however, why not learn real insight from other people’s mistakes. So when I am in that moment of feeling unsure of what to do, when I have nagging feelings of being a fraud and my intuition doesn’t give me an answer. I can reflect on the challenges that others have faced. I can remind myself how someone overcame a fork in the road.  In my art book reviews, I document many of the important lessons I have learnt from others.

The obstacles is the way, stuart bush studio notes, book review

The Obstacles is the Way – review

The Obstacles is the Way – book review Have you ever considered that there are no statues of critics?   If someone said to you “Really! You’re going to make a living out of your art! Ha, ha! You’re going to starve!”  How would that make you feel? Would that be enough to break the hypnotic rhythm of everyday life? Would a statement like that make you stand up an inch taller and say I’ll show you!  Does it make you want to prove it to them, that you can do it?  Does it become the power of you? In ‘The Obstacles is the Way,’ it is Ryan Holiday’s contention,… Read More »The Obstacles is the Way – review

How To See, David Salle, Stuart Bush Studio notes

How To See by David Salle review

‘How To See’ by David Salle book review Have you ever wondered what you are supposed to think when you look at a painting? In the book ‘How To See,’ David Salle is dissatisfied that art critics focus on: content, artist’s intention, the audience, and the market.  Salle believes artist intention and content might help to explain a small aspect of the work.  The content might have helped to get the work started and quite often the intention is an afterthought.  Considering the audience and the market while focusing on the little plagues takes your attention away from where it should be.  When Salle stands in front of a painting,… Read More »How To See by David Salle review

Stuart bush Studio, Outliers book review, 10,000 hours, malcolm gladwell

Outliers – Book review

‘Outliers, The Story of Success’ by Malcolm Gladwell – book review   As an artist, the idea of wanting to make an impressive declaration through your work, and reaching for the top is understandable; this happens in almost any field, not just in art.  Quite often I look at other artists and the people who have gone before me and think, what can I learn from them and also what am I looking for?  In his book ‘Outliers, The Story of Success,’ Malcolm Gladwell believes that we often focus on people’s personalities and intelligence. “Our hero was born in modest circumstances,” Gladwell writes, “and by virtue of his own grit and… Read More »Outliers – Book review

Stuart Bush Studio Notes, Playing to the gallery, Grayson Perry

Playing to the Gallery – book review

Playing to the Gallery by Grayson Perry Have you ever stepped into a contemporary art gallery and felt angry and confused?  How do you tell if something is good or bad?   It can be puzzling trying to form an opinion about contemporary art.  Who can answer this question for us?  Grayson Perry, the transvestite pottery and Turner Prize winner, takes on this brave task in his book ‘Playing to the Gallery’.  In it, Perry guides us on a whistle-stop tour of dissecting contemporary art as he sets out the tools to allow us to an understanding of modern societies’ relationship with art.   His book is based on a… Read More »Playing to the Gallery – book review

Stuart Bush Studio Notes, artist Eric Fischl,

‘Bad Boy’ by Eric Fischl – book review

‘Bad Boy’ by artist Eric Fischl – book review I imagine when artist Eric Fischl wrote ‘Bad Boy,’ about his journey as an artist, it must at times been excruciating to write.  Fischl along with his co-author Michael Stone goes deep with stories about the uncertainty of life as an artist.   He includes narratives of middle-class white America, from his messy dysfunctional family to his roller-coaster career.  However, the highlight for me is the journey Eric Fischl took to realise the type of artist he wanted to be.   Eric Fischl talks a lot about his time at art school at CalArts, California Institute of the Arts under the… Read More »‘Bad Boy’ by Eric Fischl – book review

Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday book review, Stuart Bush Studio

Ego is the Enemy – Book Review

We have all come across people who appear cocky and arrogant. People with massive high opinions of themselves.  People who seek the attainment of superiority and ascendancy above making a real difference to others in this world.   When I come across people like this, they always rub me up the wrong way. As an artist, at times I can get overly focused on my work, like most people who enjoy what they do.  However, I don’t want my confidence to turn into arrogance. I am very mindful that I don’t allow my focus to lead me to be self-absorbed and egocentric.   Luckily, I have come across the excellent… Read More »Ego is the Enemy – Book Review

Stuart Bush Studio Notes, Making it in the art world, art world,

Making it in the Art World – book review

Making it in the Art World The once traditional approach of cracking the art market by working the gallery and exhibition circuits, and applying for bigger and bigger opportunities, is no longer the only route to notoriety.    The book, ‘Making it in the art world: New approaches to Galleries, Shows and Raising Money by Brainard Carey’, was written to give artists insight to finding their own way into the art world. Carey incites artists to raise their own money; build up networks; and bypass the gallery system in order to light a fire under their own career.   I had the assumption, before reading the book, that it would… Read More »Making it in the Art World – book review

image

Art and Fear book review

Art and Fear, Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Making, by David Bayles and Ted Orland – art book review Have you ever wondered about the best way to approach art-making? In Art and Fear, Observations on the Perils (and Rewards) of Art Making, by David Bayles and Ted Orland the artists and authors take on the challenge of verbalising the disquiet and unease of making art.   It is somewhat comforting to read an artist talking about typical problems and how to overcome them. One of the memorable anecdotes from the book comes from a ceramics class. The ceramics class is put into two groups and are told they… Read More »Art and Fear book review

the war of art, stuart bush studio notes, book review

War of Art book review

‘The War of Art’ by Steven Pressfield – book review At some point, most creative people realise that something needs to change.  The book  ‘The Art of War’ by Steven Pressfield, essentially it is a self-help book for amateur artists and writers battling with inner self-doubt and fear, to help them understand what is holding them back.   The highlight of the book for me was about learning to overcome resistance and ‘turning pro’ as the book inquires, “Are you a writer who doesn’t write, a painter who doesn’t paint, an entrepreneur who never starts a venture? Then you know what “Resistance” is.”   When I tried to read ‘The Art of… Read More »War of Art book review

Leonardo Da Vinci Vitruvian Man

Leonardo Da Vinci book review

Leonardo Da Vinci by Walter Isaacson book review If you have ever wondered about the life and mind of a voracious creative genius, then this is undoubtedly a satisfying read.  Leonardo Da Vinci left 7200 pages of notebooks after his death, filled with anatomical and scientific drawings, detailed designs for new machines and weapons, military strategies, maps, sketches, and observations, as well as 15 paintings.  He was interested in art, engineering, biology, medicine and geology amongst many other subjects.  Walter Isaacson’s book is an interpretation and analysis of those notebooks and paintings.  The six hundreds pages of the book, ‘Leonardo Da Vinci’ by Walter Isaacson it is an immensely impressive undertaking.   Author… Read More »Leonardo Da Vinci book review