Sometimes I love the Internet.(Note 1.)
The Bas Bleu Booksellers catalog arrived in the mail last week, as it does from time to time, and I happened to glance at the cover, which displayed a colorful patchwork of book covers. My eye was drawn to the top right corner, where a stunning painting adorned the cover of a paperback novel. I set off on a mission: I had to find that painting and the artist.
I could just barely make out that the novel was Mariana, by Monica Dickens. A quick Internet search revealed that the publisher was Persephone Classics, and by applying a few more judicious terms in a search engine, I found a blog that discussed works of art on book covers, among which were some of the Persephone Classics. It turns out that the image on the Dickens paperback was indeed a significant painting called Amity; the artist was Bernard Fleetwood-Walker, whom I had never heard of.
So, about three and a half minutes after being struck by a tiny image on a book catalog, I had found not only the full reproduction of the original painting, but a biography of the artist and a collection of all of his known works. That’s pretty amazing, when you think about it. There was a day, not so very long ago, in which this “mission” to find the artist would have taken a lot more effort.
Image from the National Gallery of Canada
Anyway, if you like this sort of thing, I recommend checking out Bernard Fleetwood-Walker’s paintings and drawings. Because it contains everything, the collection is not uniformly brilliant, but many of his works appeal strongly to my sense of aesthetics.
1. And sometimes I don’t. But that’s another story.
2. Image from the National Gallery of Canada, http://www.gallery.ca/1930/themes.htm.