Primal Beauty is a quintessential coffee table book—large in size and produced with high quality, and leafing through it is pleasing. Nevertheless, the huge number of photos illustrating artworks with crystals is overwhelming, and not many will persist to view the entire book even though each piece is beautiful. Lawrence Stoller inserted ten pages of text here and there, including an introduction. The text is more lyrical than informative, including the author’s personal experience (like walking the Camino trail in Spain on a nine-day trek). Each photo illustrates a natural crystal, often of gigantic size, most of which Lawrence carved, shaped, and mounted on a bronzed stand. Occasional photos include subjects other than crystals, like huge pieces of petrified wood, fossils, and even ice crystals from an ice cave. Each photo is accompanied by a short description, and each one is named (like “La Sagrada;” “Whale”). He also includes quotes from a variety of sources. Too bad he did not include some scale for having a concept of size. Another problem is the artistic layout—the book designer left many page numbers out, making it inconvenient to refer to a piece of artwork. Information on how these crystals were formed would have been useful.
Cameron + Company