By Henry James, Read by William Coon
Length: 1 hour, 42 minutes [Unabridged]
What does it mean to be an artist? In this classic tale, a young American tourist meets an odd character in Florence. Mr. Theobald clearly knows art, and he claims to be an artist, but no one has seen his work. As Mr. Theobald begins to reveal more and more of his life to his new friend, the mystery only deepens. He claims to have worked for years on his life’s masterpiece, a modern version of the Madonna and Child. But what’s really going on? Why won’t he show the results of his labors? Is the true artist obligated to hide his art until it’s reached the heights of perfection? Or should he make it available for others to judge? This story explores these questions as only Henry James can. Originally published in 1873, it’s an excellent early example of his lifelong fascination with art and artists.
Altogether the story is a masterpiece. –William James to Henry James, February 13, 1873
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