Questa, New Mexico: Animist Press, 2019. Limited Edition. Hardcover. 285pp. Quarto [31cm]. Black cloth with title stamped in silver on spine, and silver stamped design on front board. Housed in a black cloth covered slipcase with silver stamped decor. Glossy, heavily illustrated pages. As new / as new. Item #58509
I will guarantee that if you love rivers, Southwestern river history, art, and a well written book... and if you have a coffee table, this book should be on it. "Rebel of the Colorado" would not have been written without Harry Aleson’s spirit looking over Renny’s shoulder to be sure he got it right.
An artist, naturalist, and writer, Renny Russell would prefer to be “on the loose,” rather than trodden through his beloved Southwest, or rowing his dory Seedskadee than to be stacked between the pages in some research library. But when Renny takes on a project it seems like food and sleep are only minor distractions in his determination to overcome the occasional frustration, hopelessness, and other obstacles he encounters.
For the last decade Renny worked on his latest project, "Rebel of the Colorado: The Saga of Harry LeRoy Aleson," a biography of eccentric river runner Harry
Aleson. Anyone who remembers, or is sad about the loss of Glen Canyon, will be moved by what may be the definitive book on Colorado River runners in the Golden Age of river running during the 1940s and through to 1965. It is a large format book embellished with striking photographs taken prior to the flooding of Glen Canyon, many by P.T. Reilly, with illustrations by Renny. But it's much more, as "Rebel of the Colorado" chronicles the iconic river runners Aleson ran with from Norm Nevills to Georgie White, both Colorado River legends. It follows Harry’s footsteps through the trials and tribulations he encountered—hardships that we cannot imagine today. This book is not a pedantic rewriting from historical documents. Russell knew Aleson, and draws his lyrics from that personal attachment.
As a young man, Renny Russell set out with his brother, Terry, from their Northern California home to discover and explore the American West. The result was "On the Loose," which chronicled their adventures and became an anthem for a generation, and continues to speak to readers of all ages. But the story doesn't end there. A profound journey marked by the loss of his brother to the powerful forces of nature on the Green River, and his return to the river years later to come to terms with it, are beautifully recounted in Rock Me on the Water: A Life on the Loose.
Renny has embraced life through art and books, where his love of nature extends to observations of the sacred, profane, and humorous in the world around us. His current adventure is the art of book binding and restoration of books as art. His love of books and appreciation for the traditions provide ongoing inspiration as he combines the bookbinding with his artistic roots in the Southwest. Through it all, he has maintained a healthy skepticism for societal constructs that pale in comparison with the powerful laws of nature. He lives in Questa, New Mexico, where he pursues his many interests in art, bookbinding, boat building, and nature.
- From publisher.