April 29, 2005

Magic Feathers by James W. Reid

This lavishly illustrated large-format art book by James Reid - is the first major publication in the world devoted entirely to this magnificent ancient art form. It focuses on the aesthetic beauty of the feather textiles and three-dimensional objects, unparalleled in their artistry and sophistication, that were created for the elite of the ancient Andean world between approximately 500 BC and 1550 AD.

Son of a British Army Officer and UN diplomat, and of an American mother, James Reid was educated at England’s 600 year old Winchester College, at Princeton (BA), the Ecole de Sciences Politiques ( Paris), Stanford (MA), and with doctoral studies at the University of Buenos Aires.

The author, internationally recognised as one of the leading authors and scholars on the textile art of ancient America, focuses on:
- The characteristics and chronology of the major featherwork-producing cultures of ancient Peru, and the geographical features of the area.
- Technical facets of feather textile production, including: sources of the feathers; different types of feather objects; creation and construction; dating and cultural attribution.
- The religious, political, social, psychological, economic and communication roles of the feather textiles in ancient Peruvian life.
- Design concepts and the meaning and importance of the motifs and shapes employed.
- The parallels to be drawn between ancient Peruvian feather textiles and Modern Art.

He is the author of eleven major books, which contain introductions by HRH Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, Mario Vargas Llosa and such internationally renowned archaeologists as Federico Kauffmann-Doig. He has presented his books personally, in official ceremonies, to the Presidents of Brazil and Peru.

In addition to numerous other publications( scholarly articles and museum catalogues, et al.,), he has been guest lecturer at US universities ( Princeton, Yale, Syracuse), and such institutions as the Americas’ Society, New York; the Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto; the Israel Museum, Jerusalem , and numerous South American institutions. He was recently invited by Germain Viatte, Directeur du Musee du quai Branly – French President Chirac’s huge new museum, ten years in construction( due to open in 2006) – to lecture in Paris, and to author a 100 page catalogue.

A linguist in seven languages, Colonel Reid is an elected member of New York’s prestigious Explorers Club as the result of his expeditions to, and accounts of remote areas of the world. An artist who studied in Paris, he has exhibited his paintings internationally – primarily in France, the US and South America.

An excellent Feather book though not so feather-weight (11 pounds)

April 29, 2005 in Art, Books, Columnists, History, Travel | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

December 12, 2004

National Parks

Picturing America's National Parks

Quang-Tuan Luong became the first person to photograph all 58 US national parks in 2002 and continues to do so, with over 3,600 photographs of them online. Last month, Scott Parker completed his two-year project of visiting all the national parks and documenting them in paint and pastel.

December 12, 2004 in Art, Photography, Travel | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack