A FINALIST FOR THE LOS ANGELES TIMES BOOK PRIZE IN BIOGRAPHY AND SHORTLISTED FOR THE PEN/JACQUELINE BOGRAD WELD AWARD FOR BIOGRAPHY
"Welcome to Rockwell Land," writes Deborah Solomon in the introduction to this spirited and authoritative biography of the painter who provided twentieth-century America with a defining image of itself. As the star illustrator of The Saturday Evening Post for nearly half a century, Norman Rockwell mingled fact and fiction in paintings that reflected the we-the-people, communitarian ideals of American democracy. Freckled Boy Scouts and their mutts, sprightly grandmothers, a young man standing up to speak at a town hall meeting, a little black girl named Ruby Bridges walking into an all-white school—here was an America whose citizens seemed to believe in equality and gladness for all.
Who was this man who served as our unofficial "artist in chief" and bolstered our country's national identity? Behind the folksy, pipe-smoking façade lay a surprisingly complex figure—a lonely painter who suffered from depression and was consumed by a sense of inadequacy. He wound up in treatment with the celebrated psychoanalyst Erik Erikson. In fact, Rockwell moved to Stockbridge, Massachusetts so that he and his wife could be near Austen Riggs, a leading psychiatric hospital. "What's interesting is how Rockwell's personal desire for inclusion and normalcy spoke to the national desire for inclusion and normalcy," writes Solomon. "His work mirrors his own temperament—his sense of humor, his fear of depths—and struck Americans as a truer version of themselves than the sallow, solemn, hard-bitten Puritans they knew from eighteenth-century portraits."
Deborah Solomon, a biographer and art critic, draws on a wealth of unpublished letters and documents to explore the relationship between Rockwell's despairing personality and his genius for reflecting America's brightest hopes. "The thrill of his work," she writes, "is that he was able to use a commercial form [that of magazine illustration] to thrash out his private obsessions." In American Mirror, Solomon trains her perceptive eye not only on Rockwell and his art but on the development of visual journalism as it evolved from illustration in the 1920s to photography in the 1930s to television in the 1950s. She offers vivid cameos of the many famous Americans whom Rockwell counted as friends, including President Dwight Eisenhower, the folk artist Grandma Moses, the rock musician Al Kooper, and the generation of now-forgotten painters who ushered in the Golden Age of illustration, especially J. C. Leyendecker, the reclusive legend who created the Arrow Collar Man.
Although derided by critics in his lifetime as a mere illustrator whose work could not compete with that of the Abstract Expressionists and other modern art movements, Rockwell has since attracted a passionate following in the art world. His faith in the power of storytelling puts his work in sync with the current art scene. American Mirror brilliantly explains why he deserves to be remembered as an American master of the first rank.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
How does art work? How does it move us, inform us, challenge us? Internationally renowned painter David Salle’s incisive essay collection illuminates the work of many of the most influential artists of the twentieth century. Engaging with a wide range of Salle’s friends and contemporaries—from painters to conceptual artists such as Jeff Koons, John Baldessari, Roy Lichtenstein, and Alex Katz, among others—How to See explores not only the multilayered personalities of the artists themselves but also the distinctive character of their oeuvres.
Salle writes with humor and verve, replacing the jargon of art theory with precise and evocative descriptions that help the reader develop a personal and intuitive engagement with art. The result: a master class on how to see with an artist’s eye.
Stephen Silverman and Raphael Silver tell of the turning points that made the Catskills so vital to the development of America: Henry Hudson’s first spotting the distant blue mountains in 1609; the New York State constitutional convention, resulting in New York’s own Declaration of Independence from Great Britain and its own constitution, causing the ire of the invading British army . . . the Catskills as a popular attraction in the 1800s, with the construction of the Catskill Mountain House and its rugged imitators that offered WASP guests “one-hundred percent restricted” accommodations (“Hebrews will knock vainly for admission”), a policy that remained until the Catskills became the curative for tubercular patients, sending real-estate prices plummeting and the WASP enclave on to richer pastures . . .
Here are the gangsters (Jack “Legs” Diamond and Dutch Schultz, among them) who sought refuge in the Catskill Mountains, and the resorts that after World War II catered to upwardly mobile Jewish families, giving rise to hundreds of hotels inspired by Grossinger’s, the original “Disneyland with knishes”—the Concord, Brown’s Hotel, Kutsher’s Hotel, and others—in what became known as the Borscht Belt and Sour Cream Alps, with their headliners from movies and radio (Phil Silvers, Eddie Cantor, Milton Berle, et al.), and others who learned their trade there, among them Moss Hart (who got his start organizing summer theatricals), Sid Caesar, Lenny Bruce, Mel Brooks, Woody Allen, and Joan Rivers.
Here is a nineteenth-century America turning away from England for its literary and artistic inspiration, finding it instead in Washington Irving’s “Rip Van Winkle” and his childhood recollections (set in the Catskills) . . . in James Fenimore Cooper’s adventure-romances, which provided a pastoral history, describing the shift from a colonial to a nationalist mentality . . . and in the canvases of Thomas Cole, Asher B. Durand, Frederick Church, and others that caught the grandeur of the wilderness and that gave texture, color, and form to Irving’s and Cooper’s imaginings.
Here are the entrepreneurs and financiers who saw the Catskills as a way to strike it rich, plundering the resources that had been likened to “creation,” the Catskills’ tanneries that supplied the boots and saddles for Union troops in the Civil War . . . and the bluestone quarries whose excavated rock became the curbs and streets of the fast-growing Eastern Seaboard.
Here are the Catskills brought fully to life in all of their intensity, beauty, vastness, and lunacy.
From the Hardcover edition.
Stories of New York City's fabled art scene conjure up artists' lofts in SoHo, studios in Brooklyn, and block after block of galleries in Chelsea. But today, no artist can afford a SoHo loft, Brooklyn has long gentrified, and even the galleries of Chelsea are beginning to move on. Art on the Block takes the reader on a journey through the neighborhoods that shape, and are shaped by, New York's ever-evolving art world. Based on interviews with over 150 gallery directors, as well as the artists themselves, art historian and cultural commentator Ann Fensterstock explores the genesis, expansion, maturation and ultimate restless migration of the New York art world from one initially undiscovered neighborhood to the next.
Opening with the colonization of the desolate South Houston Industrial District in the late 1960s, the book follows the art world's subsequent elopements to the East Village in the ‘80s, Brooklyn in the mid-90s, Chelsea at the beginning of the new millennium and, most recently, to the Lower East Side. With a look to the newest neighborhoods that artists are just now beginning to occupy, this is a must-read for both art enthusiasts as well as anyone with a passion for New York City.
In The Philosophy of Andy Warhol—which, with the subtitle "(From A to B and Back Again)," is less a memoir than a collection of riffs and reflections—he talks about love, sex, food, beauty, fame, work, money, and success; about New York, America, and his childhood in McKeesport, Pennsylvania; about his good times and bad in New York, the explosion of his career in the sixties, and his life among celebrities.
Buick considers the institutions and people that supported Lewis’s career—including Oberlin College, abolitionists in Boston, and American expatriates in Italy—and she explores how their agendas affected the way they perceived and described the artist. Analyzing four of Lewis’s most popular sculptures, each created between 1866 and 1876, Buick discusses interpretations of Hiawatha in terms of the cultural impact of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s epic poem The Song of Hiawatha; Forever Free and Hagar in the Wilderness in light of art historians’ assumptions that artworks created by African American artists necessarily reflect African American themes; and The Death of Cleopatra in relation to broader problems of reading art as a reflection of identity.
An art form often associated with male creative endeavors, muralism in fact reflects significant contributions by Chicana artists. Encompassing these and other aspects of contemporary dialogues, including the often tense relationship between graffiti and muralism, Walls of Empowerment is a comprehensive study that, unlike many previous endeavors, does not privilege non-public Latina/o art. In addition, Latorre introduces readers to the role of new media, including performance, sculpture, and digital technology, in shaping the muralist's "canvas."
Drawing on nearly a decade of fieldwork, this timely endeavor highlights the ways in which California's Mexican American communities have used images of indigenous peoples to raise awareness of the region's original citizens. Latorre also casts murals as a radical force for decolonization and liberation, and she provides a stirring description of the decades, particularly the late 1960s through 1980s, that saw California's rise as the epicenter of mural production. Blending the perspectives of art history and sociology with firsthand accounts drawn from artists' interviews, Walls of Empowerment represents a crucial turning point in the study of these iconographic artifacts.
Drawing on archival documents, press releases, periodicals, and exhibition brochures in all known collections and archives, Paula L. and Michael R. Grauer provide as much information possible on the artists' birth and death dates and place, primary city of residence, art education, professional credentials, and exhibition record.
Following the alphabetical list of artists, tables for each of the major exhibitions and competitions in Texas in the late nineteenth and first half of the twentieth centuries cross-reference the artists who participated in those exhibitions. More than one hundred-fifty color illustrations supplement the entries, showing Texas artists at their best.
Using pre-1945 exhibition records as the criterion for inclusion, the compilers received assistance from leading scholars in the field as well as collectors, Texas artists' descendants, and, in some cases, the artists themselves.
Given the developing interest in Texas art and artists among collectors and museums, the Dictionary of Texas Artists, 1800–1945 will be invaluable to art historians, collectors, curators, and scholars and will enhance the national appreciation for the achievements and contributions of Texas artists in American art.
With these words as a starting point, Michael Gross, leading chronicler of the American rich, begins the first independent, unauthorized look at the saga of the nation’s greatest museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In this endlessly entertaining follow-up to his bestselling social history 740 Park, Gross pulls back the shades of secrecy that have long shrouded the upper class’s cultural and philanthropic ambitions and maneuvers. And he paints a revealing portrait of a previously hidden face of American wealth and power.
The Metropolitan, Gross writes, “is a huge alchemical experiment, turning the worst of man’s attributes—extravagance, lust, gluttony, acquisitiveness, envy, avarice, greed, egotism, and pride—into the very best, transmuting deadly sins into priceless treasure.” The book covers the entire 138-year history of the Met, focusing on the museum’s most colorful characters. Opening with the lame-duck director Philippe de Montebello, the museum’s longest-serving leader who finally stepped down in 2008, Rogues’ Gallery then goes back to the very beginning, highlighting, among many others: the first director, Luigi Palma di Cesnola, an Italian-born epic phony, whose legacy is a trove of plundered ancient relics, some of which remain on display today; John Pierpont Morgan, the greatest capitalist and art collector of his day, who turned the museum from the plaything of a handful of rich amateurs into a professional operation dedicated, sort of, to the public good; John D. Rockefeller Jr., who never served the Met in any official capacity but who, during the Great Depression, proved the only man willing and rich enough to be its benefactor, which made him its behind-the-scenes puppeteer; the controversial Thomas Hoving, whose tenure as director during the sixties and seventies revolutionized museums around the world but left the Met in chaos; and Jane Engelhard and Annette de la Renta, a mother-daughter trustee tag team whose stories will astonish you (think Casablanca rewritten by Edith Wharton).
With a supporting cast that includes artists, forgers, and looters, financial geniuses and scoundrels, museum officers (like its chairman Arthur Amory Houghton, head of Corning Glass, who once ripped apart a priceless and ancient Islamic book in order to sell it off piecemeal), trustees (like Jayne Wrightsman, the Hollywood party girl turned society grand dame), curators (like the aging Dietrich von Bothmer, a refugee from Nazi Germany with a Bronze Star for heroism whose greatest acquisitions turned out to be looted), and donors (like Irwin Untermyer, whose collecting obsession drove his wife and children to suicide), and with cameo appearances by everyone from Vogue editors Anna Wintour and Diana Vreeland to Sex Pistols front man Johnny Rotten, Rogues’ Gallery is a rich, satisfying, alternately hilarious and horrifying look at America’s upper class, and what is perhaps its greatest creation.
Drawing upon a range of scholarship and illustrative anecdotes from his own experiences with cultural programs in ethnically diverse communities, Graves explains in convincing detail the dynamics of how traditional and grassroots cultures may survive and thrive--or not--and what we can do to provide them opportunities equal to those of mainstream, Eurocentric culture.
There's more to manga than big, shiny eyes and funky hair. In these action-packed pages, graphic novelist Mark Crilley shows you step-by-step how to achieve an authentic manga style—from drawing faces and figures to laying out awesome, high-drama spreads. You'll learn how a few basic lines will help you place facial features in their proper locations and simple tricks for getting body proportions right. Plus, you'll find inspiration for infusing your work with expression, attitude and action.
This is the book fans have been requesting for years, packed with expert tips on everything from hairstyles and clothing to word bubbles and sound effects, delivered in the same friendly, easy-to-follow style that has made Mark Crilley one of the "25 Most Subscribed to Gurus on YouTube." Take this opportunity to turn the characters and stories in your head into professional-quality art on the page!
Packed with everything you need to make your first (or your best-ever) manga stories! 30 step-by-step demonstrations showing how to draw faces and figures for a variety of ages and body types Inspirational galleries featuring 101 eyes, 50 ways to draw hands, 40 hairstyles, 12 common expressions, 30 classic poses and more! Tutorials to create a variety of realistic settings Advanced lessons on backgrounds, inking, sequencing and layout options
It has been thought that the meaning of this ancient art was lost with the artists who produced it. However, thanks to research breakthroughs, these elaborate rock paintings are again communicating a narrative that was inaccessible to humanity for millennia. In the gateway serpents, antlered shamans, and human-animal–cross forms pictured in these ancient murals, Boyd sees a way that ancient hunter-gatherer artists could express their belief systems, provide a mechanism for social and environmental adaptation, and act as agents in the social, economic, and ideological affairs of the community. She offers detailed information gleaned from the art regarding the nature of the lower Pecos cosmos, ritual practices involving the use of sacramental and medicinal plants, and hunter-gatherer lifeways.
Now, combining the tools of the ethnologist with the aesthetic sensibilities of an artist, Boyd demonstrates that prehistoric art is not beyond explanation. Images from the past contain a vast corpus of data—accessible through proven, scientific methods—that can enrich our understanding of human life in prehistory and, at the same time, expand our appreciation for the work of art in the present and the future.
As a subject for visual artists, dance has given new meaning to America’s perennial myths, cherished identities, and most powerful dreams. Their portrayals of dance and dancers, from the anonymous to the famous—Anna Pavlova, Isadora Duncan, Loïe Fuller, Josephine Baker, Martha Graham—have testified to the enduring importance of spatial organization, physical pattern, and rhythmic motion in creating aesthetic form.
Through extensive research, sparkling prose, and beautiful color reproductions, art historian Sharyn R. Udall draws attention to the ways that artists’ portrayals of dance have defined the visual character of the modern world and have embodied culturally specific ideas about order and meaning, about the human body, and about the diverse fusions that comprise American culture.
Calling themselves "witches" and "pagans" and drawing inspiration from pre-Christian polytheistic worship, the practitioners of Neo-Paganism have often been misunderstood by outsiders. In the uninitiated, their art and iconography have inspired fear.
In featuring the works of ten artists, Sabina Magliocco's Neo-Pagan Sacred Art and Altars unlocks the meanings of this religion's creativity and symbolism and makes its sacred nature understandable to non-specialists.
A stunning array of color plates and halftones will touch the imagination of insiders and outsiders alike, revealing the imaginative skills of some of the movement's most celebrated artists, as well as amateurs working at home with family and friends.
These masks and altars, earrings and necklaces create one of the Neo-Pagan movement's most striking features--its ritual art. Yet this is one of the first books to focus on these spiritual objects rather than on the sociology and psychology of the followers. The odd array of costumes and jewelry, as well as the juxtaposition of neo-primitive and medieval-looking styles, troubles outsiders and contributes to the movement's undeserved reputation for attracting eccentrics. Yet its sacred art is part of one of the most flourishing contemporary traditions in the United States.
This remarkable biography chronicles the life, times and madness of one of America’s most celebrated and exploited painters whose brooding, hallucinogenic landscapes anticipated Abstract Expressionism by more than half a century. Like the best biographies, The Unknown Night brings to life a vanished world, as well. In this case, it’s late 19th and early 20th century New York—a city of artists’ studios and spiritualists’ salons, shantytowns and millionaires’ mansions.
Blakelock was a mystic who as a young man wandered among the Indians out West, and on his return frequented the spiritualist circles in New York City. Though he was regarded as a loner, he worked among the great painters of his time, artists like William Merritt Chase and George Inness. Blakelock initially painted in the Romantic style of the Hudson River School, but by the 1880s, his brooding, hallucinogenic landscapes were considered among the most controversial, radical paintings of the era. In the 1890s he fell on hard times and sometimes played the piano on the vaudeville circuit to earn extra cash. He suffered his first mental break down in 1891. After a period of remission he became violent and was institutionalized in 1899 just as his reputation was beginning to soar. Interest in his work peaked in 1916 when a wave of Blakelock hysteria swept America. Crowds lined up to see Blakelock exhibitions in New York, Chicago and San Francisco. Wealthy collectors bid record prices for his haunting paintings. Blakelock was released from the asylum and seemed destined for a glorious and comfortable end. Instead, fed upon by opportunistic dealers and forgers, Blakelock became entangled in a web of deceit spun by the very woman who was supposed to be his savior.
Vincent begins his story in the spring of 1916 when Blakelock's canvas, The Brook by Moonlight, was auctioned at the Plaza Hotel in New York for $20,000 - a record price at that time for the work of a living American painter. It was Blakelock's second record in three years. Newspaper reporters converged on the painter and art pundits tripped over each other in doling out praise for his mysterious nocturnal landscapes. "Few American artists deserve a higher niche in the Temple of Fame," drooled the pioneering art dealer, William Macbeth. Some were calling Blakelock the greatest American landscape painter ever.
At the time, Blakelock was penniless, a resident of an asylum in Middletown, New York. His wife, Cora Bailey Blakelock was living in poverty with their youngest children in a small house in the Catskills. Blakelock may well have remained locked away if it had not been for the efforts of Mrs. Van Rensselaer Adams, a 32-year-old vamp with a shady past. Adams passed herself off as a philanthropist, "rescued" Blakelock from the asylum, and brought him to New York City to generate public sympathy for the artist and his family. She had arranged a large show of his paintings at the Reinhardt Gallery on Fifth Avenue. It was a huge success attracting all the major critics and large crowds throughout its run over seven months. A committee of venerable art personages was formed to collect the proceeds from Blakelock’s work to be passed on to his wife and children. Blakelock, all dressed up for the Gallery opening, cut a dashing figure. His wife, though, was nowhere to be seen. Adams had, as she would do again at crucial junctures, cut her out. The resulting newspaper feeding frenzy - an early instance of celebrity journalism and scandal mongering -- climaxed several months later with banner headlines about a hazy plot to assassinate the painter.
In order to better accommodate Romantic accounts, Blakelock's early career has long been misconstrued as a fruitless endeavor. His experimental work, many claimed, met only with scorn, derision and neglect. How Blakelock came to be considered one of the top three painters in the country by 1900 was never explained. In fact, the author discovered that Blakelock had attracted favorable attention in the press as early as 1879. While it was true that Blakelock and Albert Pinkham Ryder, with whom he was constantly associated, were subjected to ridicule by some critics, the controversy that surrounded them, also enshrined them. Many progressive critics championed Blakelock and Ryder's expressive, quasi-abstract landscapes, which were redefininnnnnng the boundaries of American art. By 1886, Blakelock's moonlight paintings were attracting rave reviews.
Blakelock was an eccentric, often subject to violent mood swings and later extended bouts of paranoia. He was eventually diagnosed with dementia praecox - now called schizophrenia. The line between manic depression, bipolar disorders and various subtypes of schizophrenia, however, is blurry and lately has become the subject of debate. Most likely, Blakelock was suffering from what is called late-onset schizophrenia. He was 43 when he had his first psychotic episode, slashing his paintings, burning large amounts of money and threatening his family. He soon recovered and went back to his studio painting many of his most significant and mysterious paintings. Recently found letters indicate that he was lucid until the death of his father in 1897. Thereafter, his mental state disintegrated. The family was desperately poor. Blakelock, his long hair beaded like an Indian, a dagger in his waistband, took to the streets to sell his paintings. He became increasingly deluded, believing his paintings were worth millions and that he was related to royalty. It was two years later that Blakelock was once again sent away, this time remaining in an asylum until 1916.
Blakelock has been described as a Romantic, a visionary, an outsider and an eccentric Hudson River School artist. His work, which contains both classic and modern elements, defies definition. Yet he is universally acknowledged to be one of the most original, innovative American artists of the nineteenth century - way ahead of his time. Reviewing a Blakelock exhibition in 1942, the influential critic Edward Alden Jewell called Blakelock "one of the greatest artists America has produced." Five years later, on the occasion of Blakelock's retrospective at the Whitney Museum of American Art, Robert Coates, critic for the New Yorker, described Blakelock as one of the "strongest individualists" in American art putting him on a level with Homer, Eakins and Ryder. This was at a time when Abstract Expressionists like Jackson Pollock and Franz Kline were looking to Blakelock and Ryder for inspiration. Today Blakelock's paintings continue to hang in virtually every major American museum. In May of 2000, Blakelock's early masterpiece, Indian Encampment on The Snake River eclipsed every other American painter in a Sotheby's auction, fetching $3.5 million. Blakelock, it appears, refuses to be forgotten.
After serving in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, Walker traveled throughout the South to sell his paintings to tourists in areas such as New Orleans, Charleston, and cities across Georgia. In those years, he created the most extensive record of black life of the period and permanently influenced art in the South.
With ninety-nine color illustrations and sixty-three black-and-white paintings and drawings, William Aiken Walker is a remarkable documentary of Walker's life as an artist and as a man. First published in 1972, this book is now presented by Pelican in a stunning new edition that includes scores of color photographs not used in the previous edition.
Judy Chicago’s The Dinner Party is a defining work of feminist and contemporary art that brought women’s history to light on the national stage when it was completed in 1979. Published to coincide with Chicago’s 75th birthday and a nationwide series of events and exhibitions, the book features newly commissioned photography and two new essays by Chicago, along with essays by art historian Frances Borzello and historian Jane Gerhard, and a foreword from museum director Arnold Lehman.
The Dinner Party, a monumental triangular table, and the Heritage Floor on which the table rests, represents 1,038 women in history—39 by unique large ceramic plates and runners with another 999 names inscribed on the floor’s ceramic tiles. It has been seen by more than a million visitors during its international exhibition tour, and has been a principal destination at the Brooklyn Museum since its permanent housing in 2007. A perfect companion to a revolutionary artwork, the book is a must-have for both long-standing fans of Judy Chicago’s oeuvre and young artists and women looking for reflections of themselves in the history of Western Civilization.
Los Angeles, 1960: There was no modern art museum and there were few galleries, which is exactly what a number of daring young artists liked about it, among them Ed Ruscha, David Hockney, Robert Irwin, Bruce Nauman, Judy Chicago and John Baldessari. Freedom from an established way of seeing, making, and marketing art fueled their creativity, which in turn inspired the city. Today Los Angeles has four museums dedicated to contemporary art, around one hundred galleries, and thousands of artists. Here, at last, is the book that tells the saga of how the scene came into being, why a prevailing Los Angeles permissiveness, 1960s-style, spawned countless innovations, including Andy Warhol's first exhibition, Marcel Duchamp's first retrospective, Frank Gehry's mind-bending architecture, Rudi Gernreich's topless bathing suit, Dennis Hopper's Easy Rider, even the Beach Boys, the Byrds, the Doors, and other purveyors of a California style. In the 1960s, Los Angeles was the epicenter of cool.
Winner of the Connecticut League of History Organizations Award of Merit (2012)
Connecticut women have long been noted for their creation of colorful and distinctive needlework, including samplers and family registers, bed rugs and memorial pictures, crewel-embroidered bed hangings and garments, silk-embroidered pictures of classical or religious scenes, quilted petticoats and bedcovers, and whitework dresses and linens. This volume offers the first regional study, encompassing the full range of needle arts produced prior to 1840. Seventy entries showcase more than one hundred fascinating examples—many never before published—from the Connecticut Historical Society’s extensive collection of this early American art form. Produced almost exclusively by women and girls, the needle arts provide an illuminating vantage point for exploring early American women’s history and education, including family-based traditions predating the establishment of formal academies after the American Revolution. Extensive genealogical research reveals unseen family connections linking various types of needlework, similar to the multi-generational male workshops documented for other artisan trades, such as woodworking or metalsmithing. Photographs of stitches, reverse sides, sketches, design sources, and related works enhance our understanding and appreciation of this fragile art form and the talented women who created it. An exhibition of needlework in this book will be held at the Connecticut Historical Society in late fall, 2010. Funding for this project has been provided by the Coby Foundation, Ltd., and the National Endowment for the Arts.
Sorkin focuses on three Americans who promoted ceramics as an advanced artistic medium: Marguerite Wildenhain, a Bauhaus-trained potter and writer; Mary Caroline (M. C.) Richards, who renounced formalism at Black Mountain College to pursue new performative methods; and Susan Peterson, best known for her live throwing demonstrations on public television. Together, these women pioneered a hands-on teaching style and led educational and therapeutic activities for war veterans, students, the elderly, and many others. Far from being an isolated field, ceramics offered a sense of community and social engagement, which, Sorkin argues, crucially set the stage for later participatory forms of art and feminist collectivism.
The author examines the works of more than forty artists, including Henry McArdle, Theodore Gentilz, Robert Onderdonk, William Huddle, Frederic Remington, Friedrich Richard Petri, Arthur T. Lee, Seth Eastman, Sarah Hardinge, Frank Reaugh, W. G. M. Samuel, Carl G. von Iwonski, and Julius Stockfleth. He places each work within its historical and cultural context to show why such subject matter was chosen, why it was depicted in a particular way, and why such a depiction gained popular acceptance. For example, paintings of heroic events of the Texas Revolution were especially popular in the years following the Civil War, when, in Ratcliffe's view, Texans needed such images to assuage the loss of the war and the humiliation of Reconstruction.
Though the paintings cut across traditional art history categories—from the pictographs of early historic Indians to European-inspired oil paintings—they are bound together by their artists' intent for them to function as historically evocative documents. With their visual narratives of events that characterized all of America's westward expansion—Indian encounters, military battles, farming, ranching, surveying, and the closing of the frontier—these works add an important chapter to the story of the American West.
This book bridges a gap between art history, film studies and popular culture by investigating how the film genre of biopics adapts written biographies. It identifies the functionality of the biopic genre and explores its implication for a popular art history that is projected on the big screen for a mass audience.
Author and radical artist Nicolas Lampert combines historical sweep with detailed examinations of individual artists and works in a politically charged narrative that spans the conquest of the Americas, the American Revolution, slavery and abolition, western expansion, the suffragette movement and feminism, civil rights movements, environmental movements, LGBT movements, antiglobalization movements, contemporary antiwar movements, and beyond.
A People’s Art History of the United States introduces us to key works of American radical art alongside dramatic retellings of the histories that inspired them. Stylishly illustrated with over two hundred images, this book is nothing less than an alternative education for anyone interested in the powerful role that art plays in our society.
The images accompanying the founding of the United States--of honored Founders, dramatic battle scenes, and seminal moments--gave visual shape to Revolutionary events and symbolized an entirely new concept of leadership and government. Since then they have endured as indispensable icons, serving as historical documents and timeless reminders of the nation's unprecedented beginnings.
As Paul Staiti reveals in Of Arms and Artists, the lives of the five great American artists of the Revolutionary period--Charles Willson Peale, John Singleton Copley, John Trumbull, Benjamin West, and Gilbert Stuart--were every bit as eventful as those of the Founders with whom they continually interacted, and their works contributed mightily to America's founding spirit. Living in a time of breathtaking change, each in his own way came to grips with the history they were living through by turning to brushes and canvases, the results often eliciting awe and praise, and sometimes scorn. Their imagery has connected Americans to 1776, allowing us to interpret and reinterpret the nation's beginning generation after generation. The collective stories of these five artists open a fresh window on the Revolutionary era, making more human the figures we have long honored as our Founders, and deepening our understanding of the whirlwind out of which the United States emerged.
Siegel’s study encompasses a variety of works, including Rothko’s planes of color, Warhol’s serial silkscreens, Richard Prince’s cowboys, Robert Longo’s Men in Cities, Faith Ringgold’s Black Light, and Laurie Simmons’s dollhouses, and moves fluidly from discussions of artists’ works, art museums, and galleries to cultural influences and significant historical events. Rather than arguing on nationalist grounds or viewing American culture as representative of a now-devalued nation, Siegel explores how American culture dominated not only American artists but created conditions that now, after the full globalization of the art world, affect artists around the world. Since ’45 will interest all readers engaged in post-war and contemporary art in the United States and beyond.
Winner of the Betty M. Linsley Award from the Association for the Study of Connecticut History (2010)
This is the first book-length account of the pioneering and prolific Kellogg family of lithographers, active in Connecticut for over four decades. Daniel Wright Kellogg opened his print shop on Main Street in Hartford five years before Nathaniel Currier went into a similar business in New York and more than twenty-five years before Currier founded his partnership with James M. Ives, yet Daniel and his brothers Elijah and Edmund Kellogg have long been overshadowed by the Currier & Ives printmaking firm.
Editor Nancy Finlay has gathered together eight essays that explore the complexity of the relationships between artists, lithographers, and print, map, and book publishers. Presenting a complete visual overview of the Kelloggs’ production between 1830 and 1880, Picturing Victorian America also provides museums, libraries, and private collectors with the information needed to document the Kellogg prints in their own collections. The first comprehensive study of the Kellogg prints, this book demands reconsideration of this Connecticut family’s place in the history of American graphic and visual arts.
CONTRIBUTORS: Georgia B. Barnhill, Lynne Zacek Bassett, Candice C. Brashears, Nancy Finlay, Elisabeth Hodermarsky, Richard C. Malley, Sally Pierce, Michael Shortell, Kate Steinway.
From the best-selling author of Sexual Personae and Break, Blow, Burn and one of our most acclaimed cultural critics, here is an enthralling journey through Western art’s defining moments, from the ancient Egyptian tomb of Queen Nefertari to George Lucas’s volcano planet duel in Revenge of the Sith.
America’s premier intellectual provocateur returns to the subject that brought her fame, the great themes of Western art. Passionately argued, brilliantly written, and filled with Paglia’s trademark audacity, Glittering Images takes us on a tour through more than two dozen seminal images, some famous and some obscure or unknown—paintings, sculptures, architectural styles, performance pieces, and digital art that have defined and transformed our visual world. She combines close analysis with background information that situates each artist and image within its historical context—from the stone idols of the Cyclades to an elegant French rococo interior to Jackson Pollock’s abstract Green Silver to Renée Cox’s daring performance piece Chillin’ with Liberty. And in a stunning conclusion, she declares that the avant-garde tradition is dead and that digital pioneer George Lucas is the world’s greatest living artist. Written with energy, erudition, and wit, Glittering Images is destined to change the way we think about our high-tech visual environment.
From the Hardcover edition.
American Modern presents a fresh look at MoMA’s holdings of American art from that period. The still lifes, portraits, and urban, rural, and industrial landscapes vary in style, approach, and medium: melancholy images by Edward Hopper and Andrew Wyeth bump against the eccentric landscapes of Charles Burchfield and the Jazz Age sculpture of Elie Nadelman. Yet a distinct sensibility emerges, revealing a side of the Museum that may surprise a good part of its audience and throwing light on the cultural preoccupations of the rapidly changing American society of the day.
Krauss demonstrates that contrary to popular conceptions of de Kooning as an artist who painted chaotically only to finish abruptly, he was in fact constantly reworking the same subject based on a compositional template. This template informed all of his art and included a three-part vertical structure; the projection of his male point of view into the painting or sculpture; and the near-universal inclusion of the female form, which was paired with her redoubled projection onto his work. Krauss identifies these elements throughout de Kooning’s oeuvre, even in his paintings of highways, boats, and landscapes: Woman is always there. A thought-provoking study by one of America’s greatest art critics, Willem de Kooning Nonstop revolutionizes our understanding of de Kooning and shows us what has always been hiding in plain sight in his work.
When Elizabeth Cady Stanton penned the Declaration of Sentiments for the first women’s rights convention, held in Seneca Falls, New York, in 1848, she unleashed a powerful force in American society. In A Sisterhood of Sculptors, Melissa Dabakis outlines the conditions under which a group of American women artists adopted this egalitarian view of society and negotiated the gendered terrain of artistic production at home and abroad.
Between 1850 and 1876, a community of talented women sought creative refuge in Rome and developed successful professional careers as sculptors. Some of these women have become well known in art-historical circles: Harriet Hosmer, Edmonia Lewis, Anne Whitney, and Vinnie Ream. The reputations of others have remained, until now, buried in the historical record: Emma Stebbins, Margaret Foley, Sarah Fisher Ames, and Louisa Lander. At midcentury, they were among the first women artists to attain professional stature in the American art world while achieving international fame in Rome, London, and other cosmopolitan European cities. In their invention of modern womanhood, they served as models for a younger generation of women who adopted artistic careers in unprecedented numbers in the years following the Civil War.
At its core, A Sisterhood of Sculptors is concerned with the gendered nature of creativity and expatriation. Taking guidance from feminist theory, cultural geography, and expatriate and postcolonial studies, Dabakis provides a detailed investigation of the historical phenomenon of women’s artistic lives in Rome in the mid-nineteenth century. As an interdisciplinary examination of femininity and creativity, it provides models for viewing and interpreting nineteenth-century sculpture and for analyzing the gendered status of the artistic profession.
In celebration of RAIR's fortieth anniversary, Ann McGarrell, whose husband was one of the artists-in-residence, has written an anecdotal history of the Roswell program. In a town known for its UFO landings, Roswell's Artist-in-Residence program provides a contemporary counterpoint to the Southwest's traditional art forms. Additionally, RAIR has provided inspiration to many of New Mexico's most prominent artists, including former attendees Luis Jimenez and Robert Parke Harrison.
As the face of many political movements, posters are essential for fueling recruitment, spreading propaganda, and sustaining morale. Disseminated by governments, political parties, labor unions and other organizations, political posters transcend time and span the entire spectrum of political affiliations and philosophies.
Drawing on the celebrated collection in the Tamiment Library’s Poster and Broadside Collection at New York University, Ralph Young has compiled an extraordinarily visceral collection of posters that represent the progressive protest movements of the twentieth Century: labor, civil rights, the Vietnam War, LGBT rights, feminism and other minority rights.
Make Art Not War can be enjoyed on aesthetic grounds alone, and also offers fascinating and revealing insights into twentieth century cultural, social and political history.
In 1929, Louise Nevelson was a disappointed housewife with a young son, surrounded by New York’s vibrant artistic community but unable to fully engage with it. By 1950, she was an artist living on her own, financially dependent on her family, but she had received a glimmer of recognition from the establishment: inclusion in a group show at the Whitney Museum of American Art. In 1980, Nevelson celebrated her second Whitney retrospective. Her work was held in public collections around the world; her massive steel sculptures appeared in public spaces in seventeen states, including the Louise Nevelson Plaza in New York City’s Financial District.
The story of Nevelson’s artistic, spiritual, even physical transformation (she developed a taste for outrageous outfits and false eyelashes made of mink) is dramatic, complex, and inseparable from major historical and cultural shifts of the twentieth century, particularly in the art world. Art historian and psychoanalyst Laurie Wilson brings a unique and sensitive perspective to Nevelson’s story, drawing on hours of interviews she conducted with Nevelson and her circle. Over 100 images, many of them drawn from personal archives and never before published, make this the most visually and narratively comprehensive biography of this remarkable artist yet published.
Among the topics on which Baldwin focuses are the contributions of slaves and freed blacks to the pottery industry, including the remarkable work of the potter named Dave, who marked his wares with brief verse inscriptions, including this one found on a large food-storage container: “Great & Noble Jar, / hold sheep, goat, and bear.”
The book is illustrated with nearly two hundred photographs (including fifteen color plates), maps, and drawings and includes an index of South Carolina potters.