I was saddened to learn yesterday of the death of the author, painter, broadcaster and critic John Berger. It was only recently I was watching an excellent film on him on the BBC and thinking what a wonderfully trenchant thinker he was, and so this is another blow to the world of the arts.

bergerI’ve been aware of Berger for a long time, through his seminal TV programme “Ways of Seeing”, but it’s only recently that I’ve started reading his books.

berger

I thought very highly of his first novel, “A Painter of Our Time”, a wonderful book which gave much insight into the art world of the 1950s as well as making me consider how little we actually know about each other. I also have “Ways of Seeing” lurking and I really *should* bump it up the TBR pile.

bento

I also read and loved “Bento’s Sketchbook”, a beautiful fusion of images and words, featuring Berger’s sketches, reminiscences, thoughts and musings. I said at the end of my review that “I came to the end of Berger’s book intrigued, interested, thoughtful and oddly reassured – while there are minds like his in the world there is still hope.” Alas, we have lost another good mind and the world is a lesser place because of it.

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