Hidden Tapestry reveals the unforgettable story of Flemish American artist Jan Yoors—childhood vagabond, wartime resistance fighter, and urban bohemian. At the peak of his fame in the 1970s, Yoors’s photographs and vast tapestries inspired a dedicated following in his adopted Manhattan. Though his intimate friends guessed the rough outline of his colorful life, Hidden Tapestry is first to detail his astonishing secrets. A luminous and inspiring account of resilience, resourcefulness, and love.
"Debra Dean puts the stitches in the rich tapestry that was Jan Yoors’s life, surely one of the most remarkable artistic stories of the twentieth century. She reveals his incredible life of exploration, adventure, and heroism, as well as his truly unique ménage. I’m hugely impressed with her research and writing—and green with envy that she found such a fascinating subject to write about.” –Ross King, author of Brunelleschi’s Dome and Mad Enchantment
“It’s rare when an extraordinary artist wins a biographer of equal quality. As someone who admired Jan Yoors greatly and once spent a few days in his unusual household, I’m delighted to see this story told with grace, with careful research, and with such compassion for the women who were an invisible part of his work.” —Adam Hochschild, author of Half the Way Home: A Memoir of Father and Son, and King Leopold's Ghost
"In Hidden Tapestry, Debra Dean dives into the artist’s singular backstory and the equally compelling stories of his wives, Annabert van Wettum and Marianne Citroen. This is a well-researched, well-written, and unusual biography. . . There’s a fascinating story here, and Dean tells it well." —Foreword Magazine
"Her riveting descriptions breathe life into events that many of us are familiar with. Like an artful documentarian, Dean whisks us from the panorama of wartime to close-ups of our main characters, each trying to survive. Because of Dean’s ability to balance the narrative, I found myself caught up in each of their lives, wondering how the three would come together." —Washington Independent Review of Books
“Debra Dean has written that unique book that is scholarly, historically important... full of vibrant and fascinating characters, beautifully written, and somehow—almost improbably—true.” —Ann Hood, author of The Book That Matters Most and The Knitting Circle
"Hidden Tapestry by Debra Dean is a tour-de-force tapestry of intertwined lives, set against a background of modern art, war, and polymorphous polygamy." —Dan Wakefield, author of Going All The Way and New York In The Fifties
". . . the kind of book that stays with you long after reading the last page." —Story Circle Book Reviews