Intermountain Jewish News

Jul 26th
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Globetrotters, Jewish history, artist memoir

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For the IJN Passover Edition, Chris Leppek reviews three new books: Thicker Than Paint, The Story of the Jews and The Legend of Red Klotz.

MANY in Denver, especially members of this city’s arts and Jewish communites, knew Sandra Wittow as an artist of significant skill and unique vision.

She exhibited in many venues, including many times in the Denver Art Museum, and although she never attained the status she aspired to — and probably deserved — earned a reputation as an artist fully capable of expressing her vision.

Thicker Than Paint, part coffee table art book and part autobiography, tells and shows a great deal about and by the artist who passed away in 2011.


This family-commissioned project, large in size and opulent in production, is a fitting memorial to the artist whose writing and paintings fill its pages.


Proficient as a writer, Wittow tells the story of her life in clear and controlled prose. She was as upfront and open in her writing as she was metaphorical and symbolic in her painting, sparing the reader no details of a life that was often difficult, sometimes tragic and always creative.

We learn from the author of her childhood on Denver’s West Side, her romances and marriage, her many arduous health battles, her concepts of art and literature, even of her family disputes.

Much of this is fascinating to read; some of it is almost embarrassing, giving the reader the unpleasant sensation of peering through the author’s deliberately un-curtained window, so seemingly private are many of Wittow’s revelations.

While one might question the author’s being so forthcoming, her directness and courage in doing so are remarkably resolute, leading to the conclusion that such openness was essential to her, both as an artist and as a person. That must be respected.

The rest of this review along with the reviews The Legend of Red Klotz and The Story of the Jews are available in the April 11, 2014 Passover print and digital edition only. Contact Carol to order your copy at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or subscribe to our online e-Edition.


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