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The Sorcerer's Apprentice: A Memoir of Picasso, Provence, and Douglas Cooper

3.95  ·  Rating details ·  59 ratings  ·  6 reviews
John Richardson's riveting memoir about growing up in England and, at twenty-five, beginning his twelve-year adventure with the controversial art collector Douglas Cooper.

With a new introduction by Jed Perl, here is John Richardson's richly entertaining memoir of his life with the brilliant but difficult British art expert Douglas Cooper--a fiendish, colorful,
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Hardcover, 336 pages
Expected publication: November 12th 2019 by Knopf Publishing Group (first published 1999)
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Average rating 3.95  · 
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 ·  59 ratings  ·  6 reviews


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Doria
Mar 10, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great, juicy, gossipy read by a marvelous writer and art critic, who seems to have known everyone who was anyone when it counted most. Taking a break from his more scholarly tomes, Richardson invites us backstage, giving us an insider's view of the exciting and lurid art world scene of the mid twentieth century. Kept for many formative years as the clever and attractive Maitre en Titre of the once-powerful and venomous art critic Douglas Cooper, he met everyone from Picasso to Auden, Braque, P ...more
Marshall
May 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an interesting, but at times bizarre time capsule, of the era the noted art historian learnt his trade from Douglas Cooper, in his day one of the leading authorities on Cubism and a leading collector of Cubist art. Cooper comes off a perpetually petulant pain in the ass. This book, along with the biographical insights on Picasso, Braque and other consequential modern artists, art authentication, is a mid century “Absolutely Fabulous,” replete with toxic narcissism and at times comic vind ...more
Edward
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This is a book that I never would have read, had I not been in a book group where it was selected. But having said that, I'm glad I read it, even though it is a bit padded with name-dropping and details that seem superfluous. It's essentially Richardson's memoir of his impression of the mid 20th century European art scene with Picasso at its center.

Cooper enters the picture as an art historian and collector, a friend of Picasso, and a pretty unlikeable person. He was wealthy (and although unst
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Bobby Lafong
Feb 01, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Terrific insights into the modern art world from the collectors to the artists themselves delivered by the author who was in the midst of this crazy world. Cooper, Picasso and Provence layed out right in front of you. A high art soap opera filled with big money and big emotions!
Jim
I read this too many years ago to write a proper review, but I enjoyed Richardson's memoir very much.
Liz
Very amusing...as long as one never had to actually deal with Douglas Cooper.
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Sir John Patrick Richardson, KBE, was a British art historian and Picasso biographer. The elder son of Sir Wodehouse Richardson, he was sent to board at two successive schools after his father's death in 1929. When he was thirteen he became a boarder at Stowe school, where he admired the architecture and landscape and was taught something about the
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