Sunday, October 30, 2011

Worth a Second Look

WORTH A SECOND LOOK:  Yes, kids, your books can be like your best friends -- they are always there to comfort you and they never let you down because they give you that wonderful feeling when you read them time and again.  These are some of the many books in my personal library (two of them were signed to me by their authors: Beatrice Wood and Bret Parsons).  (1) The Andy Warhol Diaries edited by Pat Hackett. I'm currently reading this for the 10th time and still I find it fascinating -- seeing as how many of the people tattled on by Andy are still alive and having to deal with their naughty pasts long after the deeds were done.  Oh my -- what coke, sex and booze will do to you! (2) The Beautiful Fall: Fashion, Genius and Glorious Excess in 1970s Paris by Alicia Drake.  Like fashion, all books have their critics -- and this book is no exception.  I'm reading it for the fourth time and am always awed by Lagerfeld's mad obsession for work, work, work.  He is the #1 fashion designer in the world and he earned it by sheer determination and will.  (3)  In the Pink: Dorothy Draper by Carleton Varney.  What a lady, what a book.  I never tire of looking at Draper's wonderful, colorful, imaginative, timeless designs.  (4)  Colcord Home by Bret Parsons.  With more than 300 residential estates to his credit, Beverly Hills architect Gerald R. Colcord was an unsung legend.  It took Parsons to bring it all together to show us why and we're glad he did.  One of my "comfort" books that I read when I want to reassure myself that all is well with the world -- and it works every time.  (5)  Swanson on Swanson by Gloria Swanson.  She was one tough cookie in those early days of silent film Hollywood, but she never stopped believing in herself.  Forget any other biographies -- take it straight from the clothes horse's mouth.  (6)  Andrea Palladio: The Four Books of Architecture.  If I have to explain this one to you, I will be floored.  This is where the real glamour in architecture and interiors began, kids.  (7)  Blood & Glitter by Mick Rock.  If you love the glam rock '70s, then this is the photography book for you.  Page after glorious page of Bowie, Iggy, Lou Reed, Queen, Tim Curry in sequins, feathers, satin and sexed-up rock 'n roll.  (8)  Helmut Newton: Work.  Buy this book.  Period.  (9)  I Shock Myself by Beatrice Wood.  When I interviewed Wood at her Ojai home in the 1980s I immediately fell in love with her and it was easy to see how others could too -- and in her book she tells all on Dada and then discovers her real love: pottery.