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Book of the Week: A Pick by Laura Pressley

Book of the Week Book of the Week: A Pick by Laura Pressley Laura Pressley selects The Art in Ruin by Robert Stivers as Book of the Week.
The Art of Ruin. By Robert Stivers.
Twin Palms Publishers, 2015.
This week's Book of the Week pick comes from Laura Pressley who has selected The Art of Ruin by Robert Stivers from Twin Palms Publishers.

"This 16x20" book is reminiscent of the experience of  reading a book as a younger soul; sitting cross-legged, turning oversized pages of (in this case) a dark adventure tale. You tumble through a series of symbolic objects interwoven with cloudscapes and other lyrical sojourns. This experience is a dark and twisted scavenger hunt to put the pieces of a broken spirit back together again.

The cover image of a hand implies that The Art of Ruin is to be undone by the worn hands of digging. Here the artist shows us how to navigate through the detritus. These images are symbols and tools that contain clues for traveling from the depths of velvety unconscious spaces. Those tools include opera glasses, giving distance from oneself and the drama, and making way for light and clarity again. Other delicacies include a former dancer’s relationship to gesture that seems to contain multitudes and can be seen in all objects including the death of roses, a disappearing sunflower and white gloves.

The visual approach resembles the perceptual capacities of an all-consuming dance — after being entranced, spun around, and then put down again as you try to focus on what is nearest to you. Perhaps that is the moral of the story; the art of ruin is to become part of your theater, to lose yourself and to find yourself anew."—Laura Pressley

Purchase book

The Art of Ruin. By Robert Stivers. Twin Palms Publishers, 2015.
The Art of Ruin. By Robert Stivers. Twin Palms Publishers, 2015.

Laura Pressley is the Executive Director of CENTER, a not-for-profit organization, with a mission to honor, support and provide opportunities to gifted and committed photographers. CENTER is known for the long-standing programs including project grants, The Review Santa Fe Photo Festival and other offerings that have launched dozens of photographer’s careers.

Pressley is the founder of the Photographic Non-profit Leaders Association. She is also a portfolio reviewer who has served on several judging panels as well as a frequent nominator for recognitions like the PDN 30, the Look3 Festival, the Godowsky Color Awards, and others.

See more Book of the Week picks