Read The Italian Teacher by Tom Rachman Online

The Italian Teacher

Rome, 1955The artists are gathering together for a photograph. In one of Rome's historic villas, a party is bright with near-genius, shaded by the socialite patrons of their art. Bear Bavinsky, creator of vast, masculine, meaty canvases, is their god. Larger than life, muscular in both figure and opinion, he blazes at art criticism and burns half his paintings. He is at the centre of the picture. His wife, Natalie, edges out of the shot.From the side of the room watches little Pinch - their son. At five years old he loves Bear almost as much as he fears him. After Bear abandons their family, Pinch will still worship him, striving to live up to the Bavinsky name; while Natalie, a ceramicist, cannot hope to be more than a forgotten muse. Trying to burn brightly under his father's shadow - one of the twentieth century's fiercest and most controversial painters - Pinch's attempts flicker and die. Yet by the end of a career of twists and compromises, Pinch will enact an unexpected rebellion that will leave forever his mark upon the Bear Bavinsky legacy.What makes an artist? In The Italian Teacher, Tom Rachman displays a nuanced understanding of twentieth-century art and its demons, vultures and chimeras. Moreover, in Pinch he achieves a portrait of painful vulnerability and realism: talent made irrelevant by personality. Stripped of egotism, authenticity or genius, Pinch forces us to face the deep held fear of a life lived in vain....

Title : The Italian Teacher
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ISBN : 9781786482570
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 336 pages
Url Type : Home » Download » The Italian Teacher

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The Italian Teacher Reviews

  • Vivek Tejuja

    After a very long time, I read a book about art and its understanding and more than anything else about the value it holds in our lives. “The Italian Teacher” is a melting pot of everything – well, almost – it is about art, its integrity, how to preserve it, the frailty of humans, and of relationships we hold close and the ones that often break way too easily.

    Pinch’s parents are both artists. To a very large extent it is the bane of his life, but somehow Pinch learns to live with it. His mother
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  • Marianne

    “Pinch doesn’t know. But he supposes that this is how culture works: the taste-makers call something important until it becomes so, making themselves important in the process.”

    The Italian Teacher is the fourth novel by British-born journalist and author, Tom Rachman. Charlie Bavinsky (Pinch to his parents) always seemed to exist in the shadow of his father, renowned mid-twentieth century artist, Bear Bavinsky. Pinch was always trying to measure up, always failing to make the grade. And yet, he b
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  • Jeffrey Keeten

    ”How amazing my mother and father were! All those years, all their bullying doubts, all in the paltry hope that strangers might someday stand before their work and look, probably no longer than a few seconds. That’s all they were fighting for.

    What driven lives!”


    Charles “Pinch” Bavinsky is the Roman spawn of a Canadian sculptor and a celebrated American artist. Bear Bavinsky achieved his reputation in the 1950s by painting body parts, never faces. His canvases are masculine and virile to match hi
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  • Alecia

    I am rounding this up from a 3.5. I enjoyed Tom Rachman's novel from a few years back, The Imperfectionists, so I was looking forward to this new one. His writing does not disappoint, and, although it is a rather dense read, it is ultimately a rewarding one.

    The main character who takes us through the book, is Charles "Pinch" Bavinsky, son of Bear Bavinsky, a world-renown artist. Bear is a driven, narcissistic painter, and his main focus in life is painting. If he doesn't think his works are up t
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  • Ellen

    I've had Tom Rachman's debut novel, The Imperfectionists, on my Want to Read list since it was published to great reviews in 2010, but have neglected it in favor of other books. In two days, I have consumed his latest, The Italian Teacher, and will now move The Imperfectionists to the top of my list.

    It took awhile for me to get hooked. Rachman's protagonist is Pinch Bavinsky, and we meet him as a child and then follow him through all the phases of his life. He is a hapless but endearing characte
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  • Libby Chester

    ‘The Italian Teacher’ by Tom Rachman is a beautiful novel about art and relationships. Opening in Rome, 1955, the main protagonist is Pinch Bavinsky, five years old. Pinch’s Dad is the famous artist Bear Bavinsky, larger than life, and aware of his affect on lesser folk. Natalie, Pinch’s mother, meets Bear when she’s barely twenty. Although she struggles to become known for her pottery creations, her greatest accomplishment seems to be as Bear’s muse. Bear paints Life Stills, a hand, a leg, etc. ...more

  • Penny (Literary Hoarders)

    Wow, I can't say I cared for this one at all.

    It was such a highly anticipated read too, especially after the love I had for The Rise & Fall of Great Powers, I was expecting the same amount of love to pour out of me for The Italian Teacher. Sadly, that just wasn't the case. The gorgeous cover doesn't match the bland story and unlikeable everyone inside.

    :-(

  • Chrissie

    I can see that many will enjoy this novel, but it did not fit me. I will explain why in the hope that you may determine if perhaps it will fit you.

    We follow the lives of Bear Bavinsky, an artist, and Charles Bavinsky, his son. Charles is born in 1950 and we follow him from his childhood in Rome through to his death in 2011. His father dies a decade earlier. Loose ends are tied up and the book concludes with a retrospective of Bear’s artwork at Tate Gallery in 2018. Along the way readers visit R
    ...more