Accidentally Wes Anderson

Wally Koval. Voracious, $35 (304p) ISBN 978-0-3164-9273-7
Koval gleefully arrays the awe-inspiring products of his Wes Anderson fan-photography Instagram project, an (officially authorized) labor-of-love. The selections in this debut coffee-table conversation-piece are culled from submissions by a “global community of more than one million Adventurers” that recall the filmmaker’s color-saturated oeuvre, many published for the first time here. While it may be impossible to visit the fictitious Grand Budapest Hotel, here are real-life rivals to its nostalgic grandeur, including the Georgian Hotel (California), Hotel Molitor (Paris), and Hotel Sacher (Vienna). Highlights include the Darjeeling Limited–reminiscent narrow La Casa Mínima (Buenos Aires) and gorgeous Amanjena (Marrakech), and shabby-twee Camp Shady Brook (Colorado), à la Moonrise Kingdom. Varying in layout, the images share vibrant color composition, both joyful and surreal. Koval includes brief histories of the locations—such as a capsule backstory to Anderson-film–flexible setting Hearst Castle, in California, and descriptions of the ship port-style windows and “mosaic of light blue tiles” welcoming “seafaring patients” of Buenos Aires Hospital Naval (or perhaps travelers on Life Aquatic). Sometimes, though, the quest to capture the oddball gets carried away, such as a lonely camel-crossing road sign. True to its inspiration, the collection is breathtaking, witty, and happily ambitious, a perfect diversion for film fans and globe trotters alike. Agent: Chris Clemans, Janklow & Nesbit Assoc. (Oct.)

This review has been updated for clarity.

Reviewed on : 08/28/2020
Release date: 10/20/2020
Genre: Nonfiction
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