The Albright-Knox’s Book AK program is a museum-hosted book club that provides the opportunity to explore the lives of artists and learn more about art- and museum-related topics.
After reading the pre-selected book, participants will be invited to meet at the museum, where Assistant Curator of Education Jessica DiPalma will lead a group discussion of the book in the beautiful setting of AK Café. A reading guide and/or discussion questions will be posted on the website one month prior to the discussion.
Participation in each Book AK discussion is FREE with museum admission and FREE for Members. Registration is required and is limited to fifteen individuals.
Please note: The Book AK program is full at this time. If you would like to be placed on a waiting list, please call Guest Services Manager Christine Goerss-Barton at 716.270.8296.
The Yellow House: Van Gogh, Gauguin, and Nine Turbulent Weeks in Provence
Saturday, December 6, 2014, 10:15–11:30 am
In this book, author Martin Gayford recounts the period from October to December of 1888, when artists Paul Gauguin and Vincent van Gogh shared a yellow house in the south of France. Today, they are arguably two of the most well-known figures in the history of art, but, at that time, they were not-yet-famous artists struggling to get by; during this period of cohabitation, they created some of their greatest masterpieces. Gayford explores not only van Gogh’s developing mental illness but also focuses on the pair’s everyday living and working relationship, exploring their deep friendship and the effect that each had on the other’s artistic development.
Book AK Participants: Discussion Questions are now available.
Lee Krasner: A Biography
Saturday, March 23, 2013, 10:15–11:30 am
Written in 2011, this engaging biography explores the life and art of the Abstract Expressionist painter Lee Krasner. Author Gail Levin does not just focus on Krasner’s relationship with her husband, the painter Jackson Pollock, but explores all aspects of Krasner’s life and provides a rich account of her work as an artist, while asserting her role as a leading figure in the twentieth-century art world.
Lives of the Artists
Saturday, June 8, 2013, 10:15–11:30 am
Author Calvin Tomkins provides an intimate look at the work and lifestyles of ten leading contemporary art world figures, including Matthew Barney, Maurizio Cattelan, John Currin, Damien Hirst, Jasper Johns, Jeff Koons, Julian Schnabel, Richard Serra, Cindy Sherman, and James Turrell.
The Pop Revolution
Saturday, September 7, 2013, 10:15–11:30 am
Alice Goldfarb Marquis provides an entertaining look at Pop art, while examining the artistic, social, political, and economic impacts of the movement. Goldfarb Marquis gives portraits of the leading artists of the period, including Robert Indiana, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, Robert Rauschenberg, James Rosenquist, and Andy Warhol. The author also shares stories of the critics, businessmen, collectors, curators, and dealers who helped to shape what was one of the liveliest and most influential art movements of the twentieth century.
The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History
Saturday, December 7, 2013, 10:15–11:30 am
During World War II, Adolf Hitler sought out Europe’s greatest artworks with the goal of building both a personal art collection and destroying all that he considered to be “degenerate” art. In this book, author Robert Edsel details the true account of the Monuments Men, a special force of American and British art historians, museum directors, curators, and others who sought to prevent the appropriation and destruction of Europe’s great art. This moment in history is told through the moving personal accounts of six of these brave men.
Matisse and Picasso: The Story of Their Rivalry and Friendship
Saturday, March 1, 2014, 10:15–11:30 am
Artists Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso have left an indelible mark on the art world and continue to influence contemporary artists working and creating today. In this compelling book, art historian Jack Flam provides engaging biographies about both men through the recounting of their interactions with each other. The reserved Matisse and the intensely emotional Picasso may not have always liked each other’s work, but they shared a bond over their love of art and the creative process. In this book, Flam explores this complicated friendship that was often fraught with competition and rivalry.
Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo
Saturday, June 28, 2014, 10:15–11:30 am
Mexican painter Frida Kahlo is one of the world’s best-known female artists whose life is almost as interesting as her work. Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo by Hayden Herrera provides an in-depth and engrossing look into the life of this artist and explores many influences on her work, which often consisted of self-portraits and was heavily influenced by the events of her life, including her coming of age during the Mexican Revolution, the accident that left her crippled and unable to bear children, and her romantic life and tempestuous marriage to fellow artist Diego Rivera.
Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art
Saturday, September 6, 2014, 10:15–11:30 am
In this book, investigative reporters Laney Salisbury and Aly Sujo relate the fascinating true story of one of the most elaborate forgery schemes in art history. Spanning the globe, this story recounts the actions of John Drewe and his associates as they attempted to create and sell more than two hundred forged paintings, many of which still exist in collections around the world. This story focuses not only on how the artists created these forgeries but also delves into the elaborate scheme by Drewe to fake the provenances of these forged works through the fabrication of false purchase receipts, the creation of catalogues for nonexistent exhibitions, and the physical infiltration of British museum archives.
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