We’re remembering pianist Van Cliburn, who died this morning at the age of 78. We were honored to have him here at LIVE from the NYPL last May.
A “Conversation Portrait” of Van Cliburn by Flash Rosenberg. For more, visit http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10150902767553189.440253.74159958188&type=1.
The May 19, 1958 TIME cover after Van Cliburn won the first Tchaikovsky Competition in Moscow. Cliburn will be at LIVE on May 22 to discuss his piano career and becoming, essentially, a rock star in the eyes of the American public during the Cold War.
Another note about this cover: it was done by Robert Vickrey, who is responsible for painting many of the TIME covers at this time with egg tempera. A few years ago, I was in a used bookstore in Syracuse, NY and found a book titled, The Affable Curmudgeon. I bought it because I liked the name, and I was on a non-fiction essay kick. It was Vickrey’s makeshift journal, where he wrote about his experiences painting iconic figures for TIME alongside personal anecdotes of family life, and being at dinner parties he really didn’t want to be at. Vickrey passed away last year, but luckily, his works have been compiled and published by Philip Eliasoph in Robert Vickrey: The Magic of Realism.
Today in 1958, Van Cliburn won the first International Tchaikovsky Competition for piano in Moscow.
Now, 54 years later, you can see Mr. Cliburn in person on May 15 when he joins us at LIVE from the NYPL, co-presented by Christie’s. Tickets are on sale now: http://www.nypl.org/events/programs/2012/05/15/texan-who-conquered-russia-conversation-van-cliburn