From the author:

Hook's connection to his cousin and middle-name namesake, author Willa Cather (1873-1947), prompted an investigation of Cather's fiction, essays, and recently published letters. Although he never met her, Hook has read many of her novels and essays. In addition to sharing midwestern roots, he and Cather have a profound affection for the land and their philosophies of expressing that love are remarkably parallel.  As Cather described in a letter, "It's the heat under the simple words that counts. I early learned that if you loved your theme enough you could be as mild as a May morning and still make other people care."  Accordingly, we could not resist including her works where they convey the spirit of Hook and his art.

In retrospect, other themes also became apparent:  Hook's passion for the shapes of light and dark, his penchant for pattern and dynamic design, his commitment to craftsmanship, and his goal of uniting traditional and modern by commingling pictorial illusion with pure paint - essentially, recording evocative subjects in sophisticated color relationships and surface treatments that reflect nature's harmonious abstractions.


About the book:

For three decades, the signature “W.C. Hook” has connoted dynamic design, saturated color, and muscular brushwork. William Cather Hook’s ability to straddle the border between pictorial illusion and pure paint, between traditional yet modern, has won him collectors worldwide.

Less well-known about this master of acrylics is the breadth of his subject matter.   In this retrospective of paintings dating from the early 1980s to the present, Hook guides the reader on a journey that includes the back roads of northern New Mexico, the high country of the Colorado Rockies and Sangre de Cristos, California’s Pacific coastline and central valley, the reaches of the Sonoran Desert, and historic vistas in England and Italy. Whether depicting crashing surf, aspen forests, or luminous big skies, Hook’s vision is inviting, vibrant, and infused with radiant light.

The former editor of Southwest Art magazine, Susan Hallsten McGarry, has authored much more than just a picture book as she explores Hook’s working methodology and his biography, from his Kansas roots to his current studios in Santa Fe, New Mexico, and Carmel, California. Hook’s namesake cousin, Pulitzer Prize winning author, Willa Cather, is deftly quoted throughout the book as her love of the land parallels Hook’s passion for capturing the nuances of earth, sea, and sky.

SF Design/Fresco Books is responsible for the design and production, with printing in Italy. The superior quality printing provides every page with brilliant color reproduction that remains true to each of Hook’s dazzling paintings.

This book is truly an exceptionally beautiful art book, unlike any other art book you’ve seen!

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Copyright William Hook. All images are copyrighted and cannot be reproduced without written consent.