Anyway this week we offer a wining selection of fabulous art books for your viewing pleasure from home and abroad, treats from the past and the present.
We start with some books that I've been eagerly anticipating since they were announced, now they're here am I satisfied? Read on,
LOST ART OF HEINRICH KLEY VOLUME 1
SC 224pp Black + White
Picture This Press
Containing some 300 black and white images, along with it's companion volume this new presentation of Kley's work brings to an English speaking audience the broadest sampling yet of this German master draftsman's work.
What to say about Kley's work, well it's dramatic, irreverent, exuberant, sensual, humorous, it is brimming with vitality.
This first book collects his illustrations for children's books and adult genre fiction, along with editorial illustrations and sketches.
LOST ART OF HEINRICH KLEY VOLUME 2
SC 140pp Black + White
Picture This Press
The second collection of Kley's work features sketches and color pieces, as with the first book the accompanying text shed's light on Kley's life and times.
So this reviewer can tell you he's very happy with the books, though he wishes they were available in sturdy hard cover because he knows his copies will be subject to a lot of scrutiny.
Walt Disney acknowledged his indebtedness to Kley and the influence on fantasy artists like Krenkel and Frazetta is also clear, so all you enthusiasts of quality illustration are sure to want copies for yourselves!
From the same source and with the same "joie de vivre" - was it perhaps Laudanum induced - comes,
PREHISTORIC PEEPS THE LOST ART OF E.T. REED
SC 136pp Black + White
Picture This Press
Reed was a British cartoonist from the end of the 19th Century, his work appeared in Punch and other distinguished journals. This book focuses on Reed's inspired recreations of our ancestors fledgling attempts at just about everything!
Which leads us nicely into,
THE ART OF THE CROODS
HC 176pp Color Black + White
The few reviews of this new film from the talented animators at Dreamworks which I've read have given this film a somewhat cool reception.
Sill the quality of the film doesn't determine the quality of said film's art book, take Brave a pretty empty film but great book, The Incredibles was exactly that film wise while the book was dull!
So regardless of the quality of the film, I have seen this art book and OMG it is spectacularly good looking.
So a feisty cave girl and her over protective dad lead their clan to a startling world just waiting for Darwin's theory to shut it down; the artistic story behind this one is wonderfully displayed in this beautiful book.
From animated films to animated games now,
VALKYRIA CHRONICLES 3 COMPLETE ARTWORKS
SC 256pp Color Black + White
OK so everything visual from Sega's acclaimed video game of strategy and tactics is given a thorough examination in this book.
A must for all fans of women going to war in nice, lacy frocks and little hats!
OK over on our side of the planet, good people have gotten together to produce,
COEUR DE PIERRE
HC 32pp Color
Another utterly charming book from Almanza the artist behind these two previous hits, Eco and Aristide.
Finally a classic character gets his just deserts,
SPIROU: LE GALERIE DES ILLUSTRES
HC 391pp Color Black + White
Belgium's favorite bellboy gets a homage to celebrate surviving both the Nazis and the vagaries of time and fashion to make it to 75 years old!
OK there's no episode recounting the day he picked up his bus pass, instead the great and the good of BD recount in text and image what the "ginger nut" meant and means to them.
Being an anthology and by nearly 200 artists it's a hit and miss affair but when it is good it's excellent!
Thanks for your patience this week, hope you enjoy reading this blog and that you've seen something here which you'd like to own!