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Bento's Sketchbook

Bento's Sketchbook

Bento's Sketchbook

Berger, John; Berger, John; Berger, John; Berger, John;  
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Art > Techniques > Drawing
Art > Techniques > Drawing > General
Literary Collections > Essays
Philosophy > Aesthetics
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
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Product Description

From the author of the modern classics Ways of Seeing and To the Wedding (“Wherever I live in the world . . .  I have this book with me.”Michael Ondaatje), a singularly conceived, beautifully written consideration of how we can refresh the way we perceive our world.
Over the last half century, John Berger has created a body of work like no other, distinguished, as Susan Sontag wrote, by its “attentiveness to the sensual world with responsiveness to the imperatives of conscience.” In Bento’s Sketchbook Berger continues his exploration of the relationship between experience and expression, giving us a book of dazzling, inventive, and, ultimately, deeply moving impressions of how stories embedded in visual art provide us with the impetus to see and understand our world in extra-ordinary ways. Using as his jumping-off point the sketchbooks of the great philosopher Baruch Spinoza—books believed to exist but never found—Berger moves between his own quotidian experience of seeing and the imagined experience of Spinoza in a narrative that weaves its own surprising, poignant picture, inviting us to contemplate the mystery of what and how we see.

About the Author

John Berger is the author of many works of fiction and nonfiction, including Hold Everything Dear, Here Is Where We Meet, the Into Their Labours trilogy, G., and Ways of Seeing. He lives in a small rural community in France.


"Someone familiar with John Berger as a writer, might have guessed the Spinozian bent of his humanity. Someone familiar with John Berger the art critic certainly knows of his visual sensibility. What a feast it is, then, to discover these two strands of Berger's astonishing body of work united in this treasure of a book." –Antonio Damasio, author of Self Comes to Mind

“A deceptively brief volume offers profound meditations on art, the creative process and so much more… Whether he’s extending an analogy that compares making a drawing to riding a motorbike or discusses storytelling in a manner that could apply just as well to drawing, he makes such interaction and interconnection seem central to the human condition. Berger’s readers will see with fresh eyes.” –Kirkus, starred review