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Book review Living the artist's advice 

Survival tips for the creative class


If the quality of an artist's career advice can be judged by his PR agent, then you might want to take your coupon-clipping self to Borders bookstore in the Quarry Market, 255 E. Basse, at 7:30pm Tuesday, May 3. Paul Dorrell, author of Living the Artist's Life, will hold forth on topics such as "How will you know when you're ready to show publicly?" and "Clients, rich and otherwise," issues covered in the book's eight pithy chapters.

In addition to finding a good publishing house that will push your book like the latest male-performance-enhancing drug, Dorrell advises "If a gallery ever takes longer than thirty days to pay you, something is wrong. Either there's a problem with the bookkeeping, or they're broke, or dishonest." Dorrell's book is filled with useful tips on mental health, legal agreements, and portfolios, and he uses sample documents and colorful prose - "if the director seems so twisted that he'd defecate a corkscrew upon eating a nail, then you'd better pull your work and cut your losses" - to illustrate his recommendations. The art that illustrates the book is less confrontational, tending towards Pompeii Coppini-style public art works, but as a gallery owner, writer, and painter who was once six figures in the hole, Paul Dorrell deserves a viewing.

Elaine Wolff

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