What's your best art novel
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Translated from the Spanish by Hanna Grzimek. Fabio Gemelli cheated his way through life according to all the rules of the art - as a mediocre sculptor, unfaithful husband and bad father. Several years after his death, his daughter Claudia happened upon one of his sculptures, which he apparently bequeathed to a former lover. Having become curious, Claudia begins to reconstruct the life story of her father. She makes contact with other loved ones to learn more about him. But each of the women has their own truth. Betina Gonzalez tells of a daughter's search for her father, in which many a "dream image" falls by the wayside. Last but not least, your novel can also be read as a critical parable on Argentina, which strives for greatness and fails because of its vices.
Review note on Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, July 30, 2010
Anja Hirsch liked to let herself be drawn into the course of the narrative, into a narrative room, and sometimes pushed out again. The reviewer makes it clear that we have to live with cut narrative strands if we want to like this novel by Betina Gonzalez. However, the book has only rudimentarily to do with the Latin American tradition of magical realism, explains Anja Hirsch. Rather, the author puts down a father's deconstruction that can be determined in terms of form and content if we understand Hirsch correctly. Gonzalez Hirsch convinces with quick turns, with the ability to set impulses and to speak with many voices (and their reflections). Truth is not to be had, but it is always an attractive game with its possibilities, says the reviewer.Read the review at buecher.de
Review note on Neue Zürcher Zeitung, 07/27/2010
After reading Betina Gonzalez's novel "According to all the rules of art", reviewer Kersten Knipp would like to build a museum for all those works of art that artists only devised in large drafts but never created. He is stimulated to such considerations by the protagonist of the story, Fabio Gemelli, an Argentine artist who dreamed of works with which he wanted to change the world. Unfortunately, it stayed with a few "conventionally executed sculptures" and with a modest celebrity, according to the reviewer. And yet the author succeeds in making these works shine in her novel, not least because she not only depicts the seductive power of art, but also the art of seduction, which Gemelli mastered a lot better. From the narrative perspective of his daughter, his numerous love affairs, his eventful life and his manipulative power - also as a father - are described and the myth he himself created about himself is disenchanted bit by bit. So after his death there is not much left for the art world, but at least this "graceful" novel, according to the enthusiastic reviewer.
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