December 31, 2011

Maurice Sendak says "Go to hell"...

... and a lot of other fascinating art-related things in a beautiful video shot in a beautiful room:



(Via Metafilter.)

13 comments:

KenK said...

Oh the curse of the "one hit wonder". Just enjoy the wealth and ease that your book royalties allow you Maurice. You'll be dead soon enough. I doubt if the guy/s who invented the Pet Rock kvetch about their success. Life is short; enjoy it.

Peter Hoh said...

Did you watch a different video, Ken?

I thought it was a delightful video. The man's demons have nothing to do with the success of Where the Wild Things Are.

Skippy said...

The room is beautiful...the art, the tchotchkes, the warm light. I loved the gentle "Little Bear" books when I was a child and read "Chicken Soup with Rice" over and over with my own little ones. I liked listening to Sendak speak about the magic that is childhood, the mysteries and strangeness. Thanks for posting the video.

EDH said...

Why do I get the feeling that actual living, breathing children might piss this guy off something awful?

Especially if let loose in that beautiful room.

Robert Cook said...

"One hit wonder?"

Where The Wild Things Are may be Sendak's best known work, presumably his best-selling book, but he has been a productive and renowned illustrator and writer for decades.

Moreover, if you think think he was grousing about his success, you didn't hear him at all.

Ann Althouse said...

"Why do I get the feeling that actual living, breathing children might piss this guy off something awful?"

He asserts that his books are not children's books. He seems quite mad, but so within art that it's extremely touching.

sydney said...

He's right - Where the Wild Things II would not have been good. Some books/art are so good a sequel only ruins them. My favorite was always In the Night Kitchen, though. Such a wonderful imagination.

That's why he's wrong about his books not being children's books and it's why he is such a wonderful author of children's books. He never gave up the childhood view of the world. That may be why he's so grouchy, too, though. Children get grouchy when reality disappoints them.

michaele said...

As he described the ordinariness of his surroundings during his youth and yet, for many years has lived in beautifully designed and decorated spaces...I couldn't help but think...is this a great country or what?

Chip Ahoy said...

He wrote one one my favorite pop-up books, mechanisms by Matthew Reinhart. Mommy? is brilliant. Video with Sendak and Reinhart, I don't know what role the third guy had.

In the bok the little boy is looking for his mum and encounters movie monster icons along the way. Each double page a different monster and background. The boy stumbles into each scene fearlessly, encounters each monster and innocently befouls each one. Finally all monsters together in one chaotic scene of tangled limbs. The last page the sprog finds his mum, Morticia, bride of Frankenstein.

Okay, another video of Mommy? flipping each page, the most grotesque pair of regretfully over-adorned disembodied hands you'll ever see. Those nails! Ay, mis ojos!

And of course the book is available yadda yadda.

Freeman Hunt said...

He asserts that his books are not children's books.

He and I sort of agree there.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

Interesting guy, surprising that he claims he'd not set out to write any children's books.

We read 'Where the Wild Things Are' to our kids and they really found the illustrations to be 'exciting'.

Don't crusty old guys like to drop 'go to hell'? Not all that surprising.

ricpic said...

Hemingway kvetched too. It comes with the territory, the artist territory. That said, it is a bit unseemly in one so richly rewarded.

KenK said...

Sendak seems like one of those people who aren't happy unless they're unhappy. He meets with great success and then bitches because he has to do it all again. Bah. He reads every book he can find about Blake's art and poetry and complains he can't understand him? Hell Maurice nobody understands Blake. Sendak denies he writes "children books" because he wants to be known as serious writer. But yet those same books have made him rich, famous, and immortal. To recap: Fame, fortune, reputation, immortality all enjoyed in a beautiful home, amid beautiful things and the love of a good dog. Some of us would say this is heaven, but not MS.