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Hardcover In Search of Norman Rockwell's America Book

ISBN: 1416595473

ISBN13: 9781416595472

In Search of Norman Rockwell's America

In this unprecedented collection, photojournalist Kevin Rivoli proves that the idealistic, all-American views found in Norman Rockwell's classic illustrations are, in fact, accurate and timeless portrayals of a nation that truly does exist.Some critics argue that Norman Rockwell's images are overly sentimental, old-fashioned, and contrived. Yet it was always photojournalist Kevin Rivoli's belief that the themes that make Rockwell's illustrations so...

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Customer Reviews

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Innocent, heart warming, idealistic, and perhaps a bit unrealistic

This book came along just at the right time for me. Of late I've been very interested in Norman Rockwell because that idealized vision of the innocent American lifestyle seems to be disappearing. While it is undeniable (at least in my opinion) that the vision of perfect Americana in Rockwell's work belongs in the realm of mythology rather than reality, there is still something irresistible about the innocence of it all. We live in such a jaded age these days that I often wonder what it must've been like to live in an age where a vision of a functional family was projected in popular media, back when people believed in something, the future looked bright, and people had hope. Photographer Kevin Rivoli has set out to show that the idealism and innocence of Norman Rockwell's work is still alive in our 21st Century world. I am perhaps a bit embarrassed to admit that I actually found this work moving. I suspect that many of the present day photographs, which are juxtaposed with the classic Norman Rockwell paintings, are likely staged and not spontaneous as we are led to assume. But I have to admit that the present day photograph of the teenage Eagle Scout getting a badge, juxtaposed with a Rockwell painting of a Boy Scout receiving a badge, actually brought me to tears. I have mixed emotions about projecting such idealized visions of American life which are ultimately unattainable. But in light of our current age of cynicism and jadedness, it's refreshing to be reminded of an age when people actually believed in something, and it's refreshing to see that remnants of this can still be found in our world today. This book made me realize that even in our age you can find fleeting glimpses of idealism and innocence, if you look quick enough.

...I'd put a puppy in it."

This is a lovely book of photographs paired up with pictures of Norman Rockwell's Americana paintings. The premise is to show a photo that more or less "jives" with the actual idea that Rockwell had in mind with each painting he produced. It sort of reminds me of the video clip with Natatlie Cole and her deceased father, Nat King Cole, singing the song,"Unforgettable." A meshing of two artists blending talents, one in flesh and blood, the other remaining in our hearts forever..... There are several original quotes from Norman Rockwell and a nice Bio/Introduction from Kevin Rivoli, the photographer. There are also a few paragraphs from famous people, like Dolly Parton, Debbie Reynolds, Arnold Palmer, etc..... some of them owning pieces of Rockwell's art and some just reminiscing about how his artwork has effected their soul. In these sorry, sometimes depressing times we live in, this book is inspirational and reminds us of our roots and of lives past gone. I am a great fan of Rockwell but an even greater fan of Rivoli. His photographs capture quiet joy and love. I'm proud to have his book gracing my coffee table and home. It's a very classy addition.

Perfect reconnection of Rockwell's world and the modern world

My parents lived in the Berkshires, and my dad knew several people who had posed for Norman Rockwell in his Stockbridge studio. They were playing roles for Rockwell's images that have formed a folk history of the first half of the twentieth century. Though posed, the countless images from Rockwell's brush have remained popular, even iconic, representations of this country. In this book, photographer Kevin Rivoli pairs Rockwell paintings with contemporary photos he has taken from across the country and with text from a variety of noted folks. The iconic images remains, it seems, part of normal American life today. It's easy to be cynical about the carefree and innocent images of Rockwell's America, but their widespread popularity is impossible to ignore. If Norman Rockwell's paintings, his America, his icons, are important to you, then this book is highly recommended--an updating of his ideas to today.

I Love This Book!

In Search of Norman Rockwell's America arrived today and I haven't been able to put it down! The photography of Kevin Rivoli side by side with the paintings of Norman Rockwell show us that the America which Rockwell saw and portrayed for us is still out there. This is the perfect book for the times we are in right now. It helps us to understand that even though we've been through bad times before, there is a spark and an internal strength in our country that cannot be crushed. Rivoli's photography is simply amazing. It captures the same pathos and displays the same emotion as Rockwell's paintings. The accompanying words by both Rockwell and many current (and famous) Americans add to both the feeling of nostagia and the promise of hope. If you have only one coffee table book, make sure it is this one! Highly recommended!

In Search of Norman Rockwell's America

I enjoyed the photojournalist's linking of Rockwell's work from the past with similar "happenings" in present time. Some experiences cross through generational barriers. Rivoli has captured those human emotions touchingly. Great gift!
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