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Approaching the Magic Hour: Memories of Walter Anderson

4.28  ·  Rating details ·  105 ratings  ·  23 reviews
A widow�s riveting yet poignant memoir of her marriage to a prolific creator, the extremely inspired Gulf Coast artist Walter Anderson, whose splendid art was heightened and enriched by his madness
Paperback, 177 pages
Published March 1st 1995 by University Press of Mississippi (first published June 1st 1989)
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4.28  · 
Rating details
 ·  105 ratings  ·  23 reviews


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Teresa
Mar 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
The artist Walter Inglis Anderson has been dubbed the Van Gogh of the South. That’s likely not only for his use of color, form and light; but also due to his bouts of terrifying mental illness. Though Van Gogh never married, he had intense feelings toward several women. Walter, known as Bob, had intense feelings for only one, the woman he married, Agnes, known as Sissy.

This is Sissy's story of her relationship with her husband; and it’s a sad, illuminating and exhausting read. It’s also a gener
...more
K.
Jun 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: memoir-biography
Agnes Anderson was my first-grade teacher and taught me how to read; later in life I found her again, and she was friend, mentor, and inspiration to me. She began this memoir as HER life story, not (as the dustcover says) soon after her husband died, but much later, when she was 70 years old and was tired of living in the emotional and artistic shadow of the tormented artist-genius she married. Sadly, ironically, for marketing reasons, her 1800-page typed ms was cut and shaped to be a memoir of ...more
Kate Martin
Jan 26, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I could not put this book down and read it in two sittings. What a lovely woman and a beautiful writer! I cannot say enought about how much I respect her and appreciate her, her husband, and the Anderson family. Ocean Springs is a wonderful place to visit and I highly recommend everyone visit. Now I just need to get to Horn Island.
Kendall
Jan 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
A fascinating memoir for fans of Walter Anderson's art from the perspective of his wife, this book tells the story of their marriage, his struggles with mental illness, and the times and places that inform his paintings, drawings, and pottery. Though clearly a loving and sympathetic portrayal, this account does not shy away from discussing the challenges they faced together.
Meredyth
Mar 27, 2009 rated it liked it
If you appreciate walter Anderson's work, This enlightening book by his wife shows the depth of soul searching...of his neccesity of being one with his subjects, and what one one who loves an artist will put up with for the sake of the art.
Harry Miller
Mar 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book reveals what it's like to be married to a mad genius. The author, "Sissy" Grinstead Anderson was Walter Anderson's long-suffering wife. The text is her own reconstruction of diaries she'd previously burned, a fact which may convey a bit of the ambivalence she must have felt about sharing the fraught experience of her marriage. Evidently, she decided in the end on complete candor, and the result is very powerful.

Anderson remains my favorite artist, despite what I learned from reading t
...more
Caroline
Jun 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, 2009
Agnes Grinstead Anderson writes so honestly about life with (and without) Walter Anderson. There were several points at which I closed the book and thought, "I'm not sure this is any of my business." But it's a compelling story, and I see his work with even more appreciation now, knowing it came at a high cost.
Richard Thompson
From the Goodreads blurb: A widow's riveting yet poignant memoir of her marriage to a prolific creator, the extremely inspired Gulf Coast artist Walter Anderson, whose splendid art was heightened and enriched by his madness

I was introduced to Walter Anderson and his work in Jack E. Davis' book GULF, thought he sounded like an interesting character, and went looking to see if there were any books about him. I found an "official biography" and this one. The bio was hard slogging, the kind of biogr
...more
Melanie Vidrine
Aug 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I cried at the end of the book. I have a few Walter Anderson works and have visited Ocean Springs and shearwater pottery many times. During the reading, I often wondered how she stayed with him. But thank goodness for art, she did.
Devon
Aug 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Heather
Feb 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is an extraordinary account of a woman's love for her mentally ill husband who produced beautiful art. Rich in detail of life on the Mississippi coast in the first half of the twentieth century. I look forward to visiting the Walter Anderson museum in Ocean Springs next time I pass through!”
Pants
Jan 14, 2008 rated it liked it
I adore Walter Anderson, and though I think his history is fascinating, I am not taken with his wife's writing style. It's very simple, which is nice, but sometimes stilted and over-done. Oh well, it is still terribly worth the read. All those pelicans! And the snake bite...Oh my!
Rosieboros
Jul 07, 2008 rated it it was amazing
this tells about the mississippi artist who had a mental illness but painted and created inspite of his problem. His family endured a lot so he could be an artist.
Elsie
Feb 22, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Intriguing story - love beyond the ordinary, creativity into the insane.
Meredith
Nov 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Honest, visual, personal, heartbreaking, lovely, beautiful! A time piece.
rachel
Jul 16, 2008 rated it really liked it
beautiful...
Rhonda
Jun 29, 2011 rated it really liked it
A wonderful look into the life of Walter "Bob" Anderson as written from his wife's point of view. Agnes deserves a medal for putting up with him.
Tootsie
Aug 26, 2008 rated it it was amazing
this book too is an excellent read. it is about walter anderson, one of the most amazing artist of our times, written by his wife. fascinating story.
Amy
Aug 25, 2009 rated it really liked it
After a visit to Shearwater Pottery in Ocean Springs, Mississippi, I'm inspired to pull out this fascinating memoir by artist Walter Anderson's wife of their unconventional life.
Leslie Angel
Sep 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Brilliant, tumultuous,tragic. She really captures the artist's way of looking and feeling.
Rich Boyett
Jan 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
Unusual man, unusual love affair, unusual life. Brilliant artist.
Ellie Metz
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Feb 22, 2019
Vita
Mar 27, 2018 marked it as to-read
Shelves: finish-later
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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“I sat there and my love to him poured out more and more, and, lo, he flew down to a stump, and then to my knee. I knew beyond a shadow of doubt that the important thing is the love that goes out from oneself.” 3 likes
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