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Just Kids by Patti Smith
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Just Kids

by Patti Smith

Other authors: Robert Mapplethorpe (Photographer)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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English (137)  French (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  Catalan (1)  Czech (1)  Danish (1)  Norwegian (1)  German (1)  Swedish (1)  All languages (145)
Showing 1-5 of 137 (next | show all)
Smith’s memoir of her life and her relationship with Robert Mapplethorpe from their first meeting in New York in 1967 until his death in 1989 is filled with scenes of bohemian life New York City in the late 1960s and early 1970s told in Smith’s own voice. It’s also a fascinating look at the avant-garde art scene and the social life surrounding it at the time. It also chronicles their transition from visual artists whose primary expression were drawing, painting, and sculpture to poet and rock star for Smith and notorious and simultaneously critically acclaimed photographer for Mapplethorpe. The title comes from an encounter that the couple had with some tourists during a stroll through Washington Square in 1967.

We were walking toward the fountain, the epicenter of activity, when an older couple stopped and openly observed us. Robert enjoyed being notices, and he affectionately squeezed my hand.
“Oh, take their picture,” said the woman to her bemused husband, “I think their artists.”
“Oh, go on,” he shrugged. “They’re just kids.” ( )
  MaowangVater | Feb 7, 2016 |
Robert Mapplethorpe's death has brought Patti Smith the vehicle for transmuting this tale of their entwined paths into a luminous poetic memoir. This is a gut-wrenching tale full of sound and fury that resonates on so many levels. Smith hammers every word of their story against the anvil of a bard – every word counts, every word conveys its intended meaning. The dreamlike encounters with the likes of Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin just add to the mythic grandeur of it all. Being in the right place at the right time helped, but these ‘kids’ each filled the shoes of heroic opportunism with genius. This is an inspiring elegy to a friend and an era. ( )
  dbsovereign | Jan 26, 2016 |
This is a beautifully written story and a treat to hear Patti tell it herself. I remember the first time I ever heard Horses, and Easter was the soundtrack for freedom as I graduated from high school. This gave me some insight into what "Cowboy Mouth" was all about, too...a play she wrote with Sam Shepard that I was able to catch on a long-ago trip to New York. Hope she keeps writing. I'll keep reading (or listening)... ( )
  bibleblaster | Jan 23, 2016 |
Patti Smith may be a poet but she is not a writer. The book has no flow. Too many blind alleys filled with disjointed ideas. ( )
  Marion_B | Jan 19, 2016 |
Well worth the read. A good sense of how fairly "normal" kids become famous. Difficult to say at what point it has happened. Great snaps of famous folks living life around the Chelsea Hotel in NYC in the late 60s and 70s. Very interesting to see how Smith's poetry readings gradually morph into rock and roll. Definitely recommend. (On my Kindle.) ( )
  idiotgirl | Dec 25, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 137 (next | show all)
The reader knows who Smith and Mapplethorpe will become, so it is intriguing to read about his continued attempts to encourage her to become a musician, while she urges him to delve into photography.
 
“Just Kids” is the most spellbinding and diverting portrait of funky-but-chic New York in the late ’60s and early ’70s that any alumnus has committed to print. The tone is at once flinty and hilarious, which figures: she’s always been both tough and funny, two real saving graces in an artist this prone to excess. What’s sure to make her account a cornucopia for cultural historians, however, is that the atmosphere, personalities and mores of the time are so astutely observed.
 
It’s possible to come away from “Just Kids” with an intact image of the title’s childlike kindred spirits who listened to Tim Hardin’s delicate love songs, wondered if they could afford the extra 10 cents for chocolate milk and treasured each geode, tambourine or silver skull they shared, never wanting what they couldn’t have or unduly caring what the future might bring. If it sometimes sounds like a fairy tale, it also conveys a heartbreakingly clear idea of why Ms. Smith is entitled to tell one.
 

» Add other authors (13 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Smith, Pattiprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mapplethorpe, RobertPhotographersecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
Speaker, Mary AustinDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Much has been said about Robert, and more will be added. Young men will adopt his gait. Young girls will wear white dresses and mourn his curls. He will be condemned and adored. His excesses damned or romanticized. In the end, truth will be found in his work, the corporeal body of the artist. It will not fall away. Man cannot judge it. For art sings of God, and ultimately belongs to him.
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I was asleep when he died.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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In this memoir, singer-songwriter Patti Smith shares tales of New York City : the denizens of Max's Kansas City, the Hotel Chelsea, Scribner's, Brentano's and Strand bookstores and her new life in Brooklyn with a young man named Robert Mapplethorpe--the man who changed her life with his love, friendship, and genius.… (more)

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