73.1 F
Fort Worth
Sunday, September 20, 2020
- Advertisements -
Culture 17 stories inspired by great American paintings

17 stories inspired by great American paintings

Other News

Book celebrates defunct newspaper on anniversary of demise

By ANDREW WELSH-HUGGINS Associated PressCOLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Vindicator in Youngstown, a 150-year-old paper that shut down last year because of...

D Magazine founder Wick Allison dies

D Magazine founder and longtime publisher Wick Allison died Sept. 1 after a lengthy battle with cancer, according to a story in...

Fortress Festival team launching Fort Worth-based creative agency

The team behind Fortress Festival is launching Fortress Creative, a new full-service creative agency focused on serving brands and local businesses.

Local agencies take home national honors at AAF program

Balcom Agency wins five silver awards Balcom Agency, a Fort Worth agency founded in...

“From Sea to Stormy Sea: 17 Stories Inspired by Great American Paintings,” Pegasus Books, edited by Lawrence Block

Writers take their inspiration from a variety of sources: an unforgettable face, overheard conversation or perhaps, a painting.

The well-known crime writer Lawrence Block has parlayed that last scenario into two volumes of short stories, the first inspired by works of Edward Hopper and the second, favorite paintings of his authors.

Now he has come out with a third, “From Sea to Stormy Sea,” an anthology of 17 stories that riff exclusively on American paintings, from Robert Henri’s portrait of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney to Andy Warhol’s mural for the 1964 World’s Fair, “Thirteen Most Wanted Men,” and Mark Rothko’s shimmering “Number 14.”

Since the writers he’s chosen tend to specialize in crime and genre fiction, the stories are chock-full of loners, losers and cynics who get to say snappy lines like, “Sex. Religion. Dining out. Sooner or later, some human being is going to make you regret participating in any or all of the above.” (Spoken by the enterprising heroine of Jan Burke’s “Superficial Injuries.”)

One of the very best is “Baptism in Kansas” by detective writer Sara Paretsky, who uses the 1928 John Steuart Curry painting of the same name to conjure up a vivid portrait of the hardscrabble lives of white farmers in Kansas in the early 1900s, their religious revivals, as depicted in the artwork, and racist campaigns to get rid of the Native American population.

Other standouts include “The Man From Hard Rock Mountain,” a post-apocalyptic fantasy by Jerome Charyn based on the eerie Rockwell Kent engraving, “Twilight of Man,” and the deliciously noir “On Little Terry Road” by Tom Franklin and “Get Him” by Micah Nathan, inspired by paintings of the lesser known artists John Hull and Daniel Morper.

Not all the stories work, but enough do to make it worth it. Admirers of Winslow Homer’s stormy seascapes will likely enjoy “Adrift off the Diamond Shoals,” by Brendan DuBois, which pivots on a writer seeking revenge on a sleazy real estate developer who wants to knock down his family’s modest house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks to put up a “capitalist castle.”

Then there’s the nasty little confection “Garnets” by the crime writer Christa Faust, who has moonlighted as a professional dominatrix. It’s a chilling tale of a chance meeting between two women who give new meaning to the term “femme fatale.” Her inspiration is Helen Frankenthaler’s “Adirondacks,” whose swirls of red paint could make you think of a brilliant sunset — or a bloody corpse.


- Advertisements -
- Advertisements -

Latest News

Ginsburg, a feminist icon memorialized as the Notorious RBG

By MARK SHERMAN Associated PressWASHINGTON (AP) — Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg moved slowly.When court was in session, she often had...

Magnolia at the Modern returns (with masks)

 Magnolia at the Modern, an ongoing series featuring critically acclaimed films, resumes on Friday, September 18, in the Modern’s auditorium. New adjusted showtimes:

Jude Law, Carrie Coon on the moody marital drama ‘The Nest’

By LINDSEY BAHR AP Film WriterCarrie Coon so badly wanted the slow-burn familial drama "The Nest" to be made, she told its...

National memorial to President Eisenhower dedicated

After several delays, a national memorial to President Dwight Eisenhower will open in Washington D.C.The memorial to...

What to Know: The Ugly American, relaxed restrictions and I know where Greggo is!

Remember the movie The Ugly American? It was from the 1960s and all I remember is adults watching it...