Collected Writings, Lectures, and Interviews
Paperback ISBN: 0520291883
This comprehensive sourcebook is destined to become a lasting and definitive reference on the art and aesthetic philosophy of the American artist David Smith (1906–1965). A pioneer of twentieth-century modernism, Smith was renowned for the expansive formal and conceptual ambitions of his broadly diverse and inventive welded-steel abstractions. His groundbreaking achievements drew freely on cubism, surrealism, and constructivism, profoundly influencing later movements such as minimalism and environmental art. By radically challenging older conventions of monolithic figuration and refuting arbitrary distinctions between painters and sculptors, Smith asserted sculpture’s equal role in advancing modern art. This compilation of Smith’s poems, sketchbook notes, essays, lectures, letters to the editor, reviews, and interviews underscores the ways his writing articulated his private identity and promoted the social ideals that made him a key participant in contemporary discourses surrounding modernism, art and politics, and sculptural aesthetics. Each text is annotated by Susan J. Cooke with historical and contextual information that reflects Smith’s process of continually reviewing and revising his writings in response to his evolving aspirations as a visual artist.
The Secret Life of an American Artist
Hardcover ISBN: 0195156684
An examination of the dark side of American painter Thomas Eakins's life and work unveils new facts about the artist's life and makes sense of the enigmas of his work, documenting the bitter personal feuds and family tragedies that affected him, as well as the artist's own tendency toward psychological abuse and sexual harassment.
African Origins of an American Art
Paperback ISBN: 094580251x
Through the prism of America's most enduring African-inspired art form, the Lowcountry basket, Grass Roots guides readers across 300 years of American and African history. In scholarly essays and beautiful photographs, Grass Roots follows the coiled basket along its transformation on two continents from a simple farm tool once used for processing grain to a work of art and a central symbol of African and African American identity. Featuring images of the stunning work of contemporary basket makers from South Carolina to South Africa, as well as historic photographs that document the artistic heritage of the southern United States, Grass Roots appears at a moment when public recognition of the Gullah/Geechee heritage is encouraging a reexamination of Africa's contribution to American civilization. Working with basket makers from Charleston and Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina, historian Dale Rosengarten has been studying African-American baskets for over 20 years and brings her research up-to-date with interviews of artists and the results of recent historical inquiry. Anthropologist Enid Schildkrout draws on her research in West Africa and museum collections around the world to explore the African antecedents of Lowcountry basketry. Geographer Judith A. Carney discusses the origins of rice in Africa and reveals how enslaved Africans brought to America not only rice seeds but, just as important, the technical know-how that turned southern coastal forests and swamps into incredibly profitable rice plantations. Historian Peter H. Wood discusses the many skills that enslaved Africans contributed to the settlement of the Old South and at the same time used to resist the conditions of their servitude. John Michael Vlach, a leading authority on African American folk art, discusses the history of visual depictions of plantation life. Fath Davis Ruffins, a specialist on the imagery of popular culture, sheds light on the history embedded in old photographs of African Americans in the Charleston area. Cultural historian Jessica B. Harris explores the tradition of rice in American cooking and the enduring African influences in the southern kitchen. Anthropologist and art historian Sandra Klopper sketches the history of coiled basketry in South Africa, illuminating its evolution from utilitarian craft to fine art, parallel to developments in America. Anthropologist J. Lorand Matory traces the changing meanings of Gullah/Geechee identity and discusses its appearance as a significant force on the American cultural scene today. Dale Rosengarten is curator of special collections at the College of Charleston library. Theodore Rosengarten teaches history at the College of Charlestona and University of South Carolina. Enid Schildkrout is chief curator and director of exhibitions and publications at the Museum for African Art, New York.
Pen to Paper
Artists' Handwritten Letters from the Smithsonian's Archives of American Art
Hardcover ISBN: 1616894628
Even in this age of emails, texts, and tweets, there is an ongoing fascination with the simple act of putting pen to paper. Associations such as the International Association of Master Penmen and the Society for Italic Handwriting keep the traditions of calligraphy and penmanship alive, hand-writing typefaces continue to sell, and hand-drawn display type and packaging of all sorts enjoy a renaissance. Pen to Paper, a collection of letters by artists from the Smithsonian's Archives of American Art, reveals how letter writing can be an artistic act, just as an artist puts pen to paper to craft a line in a drawing. Brief essays explore what can be learned from the handwriting of celebrated artists such as Mary Cassatt, Frederic Church, Howard Finster, Winslow Homer, Ray Johnson, Rockwell Kent, Georgia O'Keeffe, Claes Oldenburg, Maxfield Parrish, Eero Saarinen, Saul Steinberg, and many others. Each letter is accompanied by an archival image of the artist or a related artwork, with a full transcription.Pen to Paper provides a fresh way to think about artists and their creative work and is sure to inspire your next handwritten note or letter.
Art & Culture, 1900-1950
Hardcover ISBN: 0393047237
The companion volume to a major retrospective exhibition at the Whitney Museum offers a richly illustrated overview of American twentieth-century fine art as a reflection of the varied cultural forces--including film, dance, music, literature, fashion, and industrial design--that helped shape it.
Hardcover ISBN: 0300091117
Thomas Eakins' scenes of rowing, sailing, and boxing as well as his deeply moving portraits are renowned for their vibrant realism and dramatic intensity. This beautiful and insightful book, published in conjunction with a major exhibition on the life and career of Eakins - the first in twenty years - presents a fresh perspective on the artist and his remarkable accomplishments. Lavishly illustrated with more than 250 of Eakins's most significant paintings, watercolors, drawings, photographs, and sculpture, the book features essays by prominent scholars who place his art in the context of the history and culture of late nineteenth-century Philadelphia, where he lived.
Currier & Ives' America
From a Young Nation to a Great Power
2nd Edition Hardcover ISBN: 0789212587
The definitive book of Currier & Ives prints, now available in a new format and price point! In the 1800s, long before the days of photojournalism and television, colorful up-to-date pictures of news events, portraits of important political and social figures, and scenic views of American natural wonders were circulating widely all through the country. From early in the exciting century that saw a small nation expand into a mighty world power, the famous lithographic firm of Nathaniel Currier and James Merritt Ives produced over 7,000 lithographs picturing scenes of American life, portraits of American leaders, and dramatic re-creations of the events that make the news of the day. Each Currier & Ives prints was individually colored by hand, and the skilled craftsmanship as well as keenness of observation make Currier & Ives prints among the most collectible of Americana. This book features the largest number of Currier & Ives prints ever reproduced in a single volume, as well as many that have never been published. It contains more than three hundred illustrations in full color.