Peggy: The Wayward Guggenheim

Jacqueline Bograd Weld, Author Dutton Books $24.95 (493p) ISBN 978-0-525-24380-9
After years of playing dutiful wife or confidante to a string of men, Peggy Guggenheim found herself alone and bored with domestic life. She turned to collecting modern art, partly because it was a sure attention-getter, partly to vex her bourgeois mother and partly out of genuine interest. Besides introducing the European avant-garde to America, she helped discover American artists like Pollock, Rothko and Motherwell. This study, written with Guggenheim's cooperation until her death in 1979, is the first biogrpahy of a remarkable woman. Weld evenhandedly catalogues Guggenheim's lovers, husbands, scandals. She shows the flaws of a woman disliked by some for her abrasive tongue and bitchiness, but whose energy, conviction and farsightedness helped transform modern art. Weld tells many intriguing stories: how Guggenheim walked out on her first husband, leaving behind a note (""Life too hellish''); how she helped underwrite Emma Goldman's autobiography; her husband-to-be Max Ernst's close brush with the Nazis. This candid, engrossing biography is also a dynamic cultural history, for Guggenheim's life intersected with many creative personalitiesBeckett, Joyce, Arp, Cocteau, Duchamp, Ray, Breton, Picabia, Cage. Photos. February 17
Reviewed on: 03/04/1986
Release date: 03/01/1986
Paperback - 978-0-525-48431-8
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