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George Rodrigue: A Cajun Artist

Freundlich, Lawrence S.

3 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0670868701 / ISBN 13: 9780670868704
Published by Studio 1997-01-01, US, 1997
Condition: Very Good Hardcover
From Monroe Street Books (Middlebury, VT, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

221 pages. Extensive color illustrations throughout. Blind stamp on cover and spine. Includes extensive bibliography. Illustrated end papers and fly leaves. Faint foxing to top edge, otherwise a clean, tight copy. Record # 466737. Bookseller Inventory # 466737

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Bibliographic Details

Title: George Rodrigue: A Cajun Artist

Publisher: Studio 1997-01-01, US

Publication Date: 1997

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: Very Good

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

George Rodrigue's paintings and prints of that intriguing canine known as Blue Dog have brought him international renown. Exhibited from Japan to Germany and across America, the golden-eyed Blue Dog is fast becoming a contemporary icon. George Rodrigue: A Cajun Artist is the first major monograph on the artist and surveys his career from student days in the early 1960s to the present. The book explores his artistic education, aesthetic principles, and Cajun legacy, and presents a broad survey of the various stages of his career, with concentration on his Cajun period and the development and fruition of the Blue Dog story.
Born in New Iberia, Louisiana, in 1944, George Rodrigue is a scion of Cajun culture. Stricken with polio as a child and bedridden for months, he took up painting and drawing to pass the time. He showed himself to be a masterful draftsman. His talent was recognized immediately, and he was encouraged by his parents and teachers. From the University of Southwest Louisiana he went on to Los Angeles to continue his studies. He explored abstraction and his own brand of Pop Art, but wanting to find his own artistic vision he returned to Louisiana, to his roots, with the intention of expressing something of his Cajun background and the Cajun way of life - which he sensed was on the wane. He hoped that by rendering that twilight world and exile culture he could make his own unique contribution to art.
He began by painting bayou landscapes and established the oak tree as a profound symbol of the Cajun world. From there he moved on to painting scenes of Cajun life, a sort of floating world of a nonetheless cohesive community. He captured its ghostlike essence before it was tainted by the ersatz culture that was fast encroaching upon it.

From Booklist:

Penguin rolls out the lavish art book carpet for latter-day fauvist Rodrigue, whose vision of a beloved pet brought him fame and fortune. The animal was a dog that Rodrigue always paints a rich blue; it gazes from the canvas with beseeching yellow eyes that Rodrigue says implore help in bringing rest to its wandering spirit. Feel-good guru John Bradshaw compares the blue dog to Faust, the Flying Dutchman, and the Wandering Jew in his introduction to this album, which also features portraiture and landscapes reflective of Rodrigue's Cajun Louisiana roots. The progression of blue dog paintings suggests that Rodrigue has grown sardonic, or at least wittier, about his icon. The landscapes and portraits bespeak his links to Warhol, nineteenth-century formal photography, Van Gogh, so-called primitive or naive painters, and the twentieth-century obsession with repetition (a Rodrigue nearly always emerges out of pitch-black surroundings, features a massive oak tree midground, and is backlit by a moody sky). The more you look, the better they look. Ray Olson

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