Billion Dollar Painter: The Triumph and Tragedy of Thomas Kinkade, Painter of Light
written by G. Eric Kuskey
published by Weinstein Books 2014
Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Did I enjoy this book: I wasn’t riveted, but I didn’t stop reading either; Kusky bounces from less-than-thrilling business details to glossy memories of Kinkade and back again. I probably skimmed a bit more than I should have, but I couldn’t bring myself to stop reading. I might not have been quite so eager to finish the book if I’d already known Kinkade’s story, but my limited knowledge kept me reading. It’s interesting stuff, even if it is a little dry. I also wish Kusky had included some photos–for some reason biographies that include those few extra pages in the middle seem a bit more solid than those without.
Billion Dollar Painter is a decent read, and though I don’t own any of the $4 billion worth of art Kinkade and his company produced, after reading this book I’m tempted to seek out a print or two.
“Is art only art in the original? Is the Mona Lisa less art when depicted in a coffee table book? Did the words in the Bible become less meaningful when they were printed by Gutenberg’s printing press, rather than hand-painted by one monk for over a year?”
Would I recommend it: If you’re interested in the business details (and more than a few juicy personal tidbits) of Kinkade’s legacy, I say go for it.
About the book – from Goodreads: The unbelievable true story of artist Thomas Kinkade, self-described “Painter of Light,” and the dramatic rise – and fall – of his billion-dollar gallery and licensing business.