Recently republished (see Why Do Something # 23), my photobiography is being offered by KQED as part of the May 2011 pledge drive. A timely offer, together with tickets to the museum openings about Stein…
When the book first appeared and won the Lambda Award for biography, in 1994, everybody who was anybody reviewed it. What Elle Magazine said about it is worth repeating:
“Who was Gertrude Stein? The social and artistic dominatrix of the lost generation? The literary founder of modernism? The sensual companion of Alice B. Toklas? A ‘dictator of art’ or an ‘infant prodigy’? Stein, whose freedom with the written word ‘liberated language from the nineteenth century,’ remains a heroine hard to grasp.
Now, as the century turns, Renate Stendhal’s Gertrude Stein: In Words and Pictures (Algonquin) takes a good look at the slippery genius. After an astonishing, playful essay, the book opens into a revelatory combination of quotes, clips, and 360 photos of Stein and her wildly brilliant circle. The subtle minimalism of Stein’s cool face, repeating page to page like her own rhythmic sentences, brings a nuanced embodiment to our imcomplete sense of her. From a serious, chin-in-air profile of ‘Gertie’ at age three to a chin-in-hands portrait taken at age seventy-two, the woman is ‘a rose is a rose is a rose.’” Bethany Schneider, ELLE MAGAZINE