Everyone knows Steve Martin for his comedic acting skills as that “wild and crazy guy" we all love. Others will know Martin for his newly honed skills as a Grammy-award winning bluegrass musician. But it is his passion for art and writing that is the driving force behind his latest project: the novel “An Object of Beauty.”
Set in a time span ranging from 1998 to 2009, “An Object of Beauty” follows the life of Lacey Yeager, an up and coming young art expert who takes on the art world like a one-woman army, determined to conquer, divide and become fantastically wealthy and beloved. At least that is what Lacey wants, but what Lacey actually accomplishes ranges from the brilliantly executed to the sadly forlorn.
Lacey’s story is told by Daniel Franks, a former lover who first met Lacey in college as they were taking the same art history classes. As Daniel begins his art writing career, Lacey begins her own assent into the art world from the basement of Sotheby’s auction house.
Working as a sorter and taking her time to learn all she can about the various paintings and artists whose works pass through her hands, Lacey develops an eye for artistic trends as well as becoming very adept at taking advantage of opportunities. As she slowly climbs out of the basement and into a gallery of her own, Lacey takes no prisoners as she cruises through men, artwork and friends on her way to success.
Lacey’s story takes readers on a thrilling ride through the ups and downs of the often volatile world of art collecting. Set primarily in New York City, the tale also travels to post-communist Russia and the California coast as Lacey pursues the latest and greatest works.
“An Object of Beauty” offers a visual treat for readers with 22 color reproductions of stunning art scattered through the book, each having a significant reference in the tale.
Martin blends romance and humor with an intriguing premise, and his gift for storytelling shines in this captivating novel, which also highlights his love and knowledge of art through the authenticity of the story.