Monday, January 10, 2011
Not Far From Home - Daniel Gerhartz
This holiday season I received Daniel Gerhartz book, "Not Far from Home." It was self published and is offered through Liliedahl Video Productions (where his video demonstrations are also available). The book is 175 pages and co-written by Angela Sekerak, who studied a couple years behind me in art school and is equally a great artist and designer, helping Dan bring his work the presentation it deserves.
I used to work in both the publishing and printing industries, and I can say from experience that this book is one of the most beautiful and well-printed books that I have ever seen and definitely the finest in my library. It's cover is linen and gold-leaf and the interior printing has great color, a nice varnish on all the images, and the ink registration is spot on page after page. Kudos to The Fox Company, Lithographers, Inc. for a magnificent job on the production.
I have always enjoyed Daniel's paintings, but felt that sometimes they were to pastoral and maybe even cliche, but this book has changed my mind. Seeing them side by side and at a higher quality has put them in the category of timeless and masterful. He has accomplished a feeling of contemporary color and composition with century old brushwork and layering, and all this while working from life -- which he says is the one key to his success.
The book contains a forward by Richard Schmid, an intro by Dan, and a thorough biography by Angela. There are also 128 images, close-ups, studies, and one demonstration.
As a conclusion, this is one of the only art books that I feel is worth the cover price. I understand that because of shorter runs and self-publication that a lot of artists need to charge double or triple what you would expect from a large publishing house, but if Dan can create a book of this quality, everyone else should be able to as well. If your an artist or collector, you should have this book, and have it out so everyone can admire it.