‘Vivian Maier Developed,’ A Very Special Intimate Biography

If a picture was still worth a thousand words, we’d know enough by now. Vivian MaierAfter her death at the age of 83 in 2009, the so-called photographer nanny, whose vast wealth of images was discovered piecemeal and literally unprocessed, as the iPhone expanded. Long before we all carried those little waffles of pleasure and …

The Fourth Time Around: The Final Volume of John Richardson’s Biography

PICASSO’S LIFE Minotaur Years, 1933-1943By John Richardson in collaboration with Ross Finocchio and Delphine Huisinga “Picasso” is a name meaning “greatness”. Only “Einstein”, short for “genius,” can rival him. John Richardson’s three previous volumes, “The Life of Picasso,” published between 1991 and 2007 and now followed by a fourth, are based on Picasso’s undisputed assumption …

Biography of EO Wilson, the Scientist Who Foreshadowed Our Problems

THE SCIENTISTEO Wilson: A Life in Natureby Richard Rhodes The scientist and naturalist EO Wilson has always reminded me of Alexander von Humboldt, the great 19th-century German scholar and explorer: both are great synthesizers, obsessed with empirical observation and detailed fieldwork. They have the ability to focus on the tiniest detail (a fire ant’s tiny …

Biography of WG Sebald, Who Turned Debt into Money

WG Sebald is probably the most respected German writer of the second half of the 20th century. It is very difficult to categorize his best-known books like “Immigrants”, “The Rings of Saturn”, “Austerlitz” published here between 1997 and 2001. Carole Angier, author of a new biography, “Speak, Silence: In Search of WG Sebald,” likes to …