Thomas Hart Benton: Drawing From Life by Henry Adams. Illustrated, 208 pages, hardcover. Abbeville Pr, 1993.
Prior to painting his murals or illustrating books, Thomas Hart Benton would make preliminary drawings, whether in the studio or outdoors. This book brings together over 190 of his many drawings which reflect all of his styles and subjects. Benton was a small man - not quite five foot three - who liked to paint big: he covered nearly as much wall space in five years as Michaelangelo did in twenty. The central role that his drawing played in the construction of his murals is clearly explained in this artistic biography giving examples of each stage along the way. The process of making preliminary drawings allowed Benton to paint the murals themselves with seemingly carefree exuberance - a public performance that the theatrical artist thoroughly enjoyed. This work captures Benton's pugnacious personality and aims to reveal his life through his drawings. This study orginally accompanied a travelling exhibition of Benton's work, organized by the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle in 1990.
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