In 2018, without any plan or agenda for what might happen next, Patti Smith posted her first Instagram photo: her hand with the simple message “Hello Everybody!” Known for shooting with her beloved Land 250 Camera, Smith started posting selfies with her phone, portraits of her kids, her radiator, her boots, and her Abyssinian cat, Cairo. Followers felt an immediate affinity with these miniature windows into Smith’s world, her daily coffee, the books she’s reading, the graves of beloved heroes: William Blake, Dylan Thomas, Sylvia Plath, Simone Weil, and Albert Camus. Over the days and months, a coherent story of a life devoted to art took shape in the extraordinarily personal photographs that chart Smith’s passions, devotions, obsessions, and whims. Original to this book are vintage photographs: anniversary pearls, a mother’s keychain, and a husband’s Mosrite guitar. Here, too, are photos from Smith's archives of life on and off the road, train stations, obscure cafés, a notebook always nearby. In wide-ranging yet intimate daily notations, Smith shares dispatches from her travels around the world.
With more than 365 photographs that take you through a single year, A Book of Days is a new way to experience the expansive mind of the visionary poet, writer, and performer. Hopeful, elegiac, playful—and complete with an introduction by Smith that explores her documentary process –A Book of Days is a deeply generous and inspirational map of an artist’s life.
Hardcover, 400 pages, 2022.
7.3 x 5.5 x 1.5 in.
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