In any game of word association the term 'bird sculptor' is most likely to prompt the name Guy Taplin. But Britain's most successful avian image maker is also in a field of his own - with a story like no other in the art world. A beautiful and revelatory new book about the Taplin life and work charts a riveting journey from the wartime East End to the wilds of the Essex coast. En route the self-taught artist, hurtling through many careers before finding his feet and pouring his spirit into sculpture, has meandered as far as the driftwood he turns into magical art. Written by "East Anglian" author Ian Collins, a close friend of Guy Taplin for the past decade, the book will trace the obsessions and adventures in a very creative life. It features interviews with many artists, writers and collectors and a foreword by Michael Palin.
Ian Collins was born in Norfolk, raised in Cambridgeshire and now lives on the Suffolk coast at Southwold and in London's Barbican. London and arts correspondent for the Eastern Daily Press, Ian is an author and exhibition curator who has also co-produced a series of arts documentaries television. His books include A Broad Canvas: Art in East Anglia Since 1880,Nelson's Ships: A Trafalgar Tribute; the Life and Work of Derek Gardner and Making Waves: Artists in Southwold. The latter volume was a 2005 Book of the Year choice in the Times, Sunday Telegraph and Spectator magazine.