23 June 2015

1. N by E by Rockwell Kent

Great, great book telling the tale of Kent's trip to Greenland in a 33' sailboat.

I knew of RW from his Moby Dick woodcuts. And I learned a whole lot more about him in the intro: he designed the logo for Random House, Modern Library, and Viking Press.

And not only a visual artist, but a real wordsmith, too.

"Man is, after all, less entity than a consequence and his being is a derivation of a less subjective world, a synthesis of what he calls the elements. Man's very spirit is a sublimation of cosmic energy and worships it as God."

Take, for example, the compactness of the following sentence, as evidence of Kent's style:

"Shunning that coast as if it had the power to pursue us, we laid a course that put us at the bright hour of sunrise so far at sea that not the highest peaks of any land disturbed the far, hard line of the gulf's horizon."