May 22, 2005

"Matt Lamb:  The Art of Success"

Both a biography and a study of an artistic life, this book centers on the controversial artist Matt Lamb, whose work has been greeted with both praise and derision.

Writer Speer is visual arts critic for Portland's Willamette Week, and his work has also appeared in Newsweek, ARTnews, The Los Angeles Times, and Opera News. He is a former television news anchor and reporter.

All that experience shows in this book. Most biographies lope along; this one runs and jumps. Speer is fascinated by Lamb, as will be any reader.  After all, how many art books open with a sentence anything like: "There are demons in the gallery"?

This book's one true fault is that Lamb's paintings are all reproduced in black and white.

-- Dan Hays