American Art
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Dance: American Art, 1830-1960
Dance
American Art, 1830-1960
Hardcover      ISBN: 0300211619
A landmark examination of the art and artists inspired by American dance from 1830 to 1960

As an enduring wellspring of creativity for many artists throughout history, dance has provided a visual language to express such themes as the bonds of community, the allure of the exotic, and the pleasures of the body. This book is the first major investigation of the visual arts related to American dance, offering an unprecedented, interdisciplinary overview of dance-inspired works from 1830 to 1960.

Fourteen essays by renowned historians of art and dance analyze the ways dance influenced many of America's most prominent artists, including George Caleb Bingham, William Sidney Mount, Winslow Homer, John Singer Sargent, Cecilia Beaux, Isamu Noguchi, Aaron Douglas, Malvina Hoffman, Edward Steichen, Arthur Davies, William Johnson, and Joseph Cornell. The artists did not merely represent dance, they were inspired to think about how Americans move, present themselves to one another, and experience time. Their artwork, in turn, affords insights into the cultural, social, and political moments in which it was created. For some artists, dance informed even the way they applied paint to canvas, carved a sculpture, or framed a photograph. Richly illustrated, the book includes depictions of Irish-American jigs, African-American cakewalkers, and Spanish-American fandangos, among others, and demonstrates how dance offers a means for communicating through an aesthetic, static form.
Natural Magic: Salted Paper Prints in North America
Natural Magic
Salted Paper Prints in North America
Hardcover      ISBN: 0295994908

The salted paper print process and the daguerreotype were invented, for all practical purposes, simultaneously. Though using different materials and methods (the salted paper print was patented, while daguerreotype was not) still both achieved the miracle of fixing an image from life within a substrate--in other words, they ushered in the medium of photography.

The uses of each form of photography varied greatly. In Europe the salted paper print was valued for its aesthetic qualities―the massing of light and the softening of detail--while in North America, the salted paper print was valued for its portability and reproducibility. At the same time, the three evolving regions that comprised North America--Canada, the United States and Mexico--faced quite different realities and challenges than those in Europe (primarily France and Britain). In North America artistic merit was less of a priority, as each emerging nation faced vast, untamed territories, as well as social and political tumult. These were countries in the making--defining borders, struggling to create identities, and establishing metropolitan areas and transportation networks, while the scions on the other side of the Atlantic cast a leisurely eye to their artistic, architectural, and colonial heritage for subject matter.

Scant research has been done on the use of the salted paper print in North America during its brief period of use (approximately 1847-1865); physical prints are often found in obscure collections and locations, and they are, as is true for most works on paper from that period, exceedingly fragile.

This volume, with essays by three up and coming 19th-century scholars, offers new views on the use and employment of the salted paper print in North America. The hope is that this publication will encourage investigation, for the history of photography has many areas of terra incognita yet to discover.

Making American Taste: Narrative Art for a New Democracy
Making American Taste
Narrative Art for a New Democracy
Hardcover      ISBN: 1904832768

A landmark publication on American art from 1825 to 1870, this is a significant contribution to our understanding of taste and collecting in America during this period. It presents fifty-five paintings from thirty-eight artists drawn from the New York Historical Society's newly restored and superb collection of narrative art.

Saints, Statues, and Stories: A Folklorist Looks at the Religious Art of Sonora
Saints, Statues, and Stories
A Folklorist Looks at the Religious Art of Sonora
Hardcover      ISBN: 0816539618

. . . we move to the town of Aconchi on the R o Sonora, where the mission church once contained a life-sized crucifix with a black corpus, known both as Nuestro Se or de Esquipulas . . . and El Cristo Negro de Aconchi . . .

So describes well-known and beloved folklorist James S. Griffith as he takes us back through the decades to a town in northern Sonora where a statue is saved--and in so doing, a community is saved as well.

In Saints, Statues, and Stories Griffith shares stories of nearly sixty years of traveling through Sonora. As we have come to expect through these journeys, "Big Jim"--as he is affectionately known by many--offers nothing less than the living traditions of Catholic communities. Themes of saints as agents of protection or community action are common throughout Sonora: a saint coming out of the church to protect the village, a statue having a say in where it resides and paying social calls to other communities, or a beloved image rescued from destruction and then revered on a private altar. A patron saint saves a village from outside attackers in one story--a story that has at least ten parallels in Sonora's former mission communities. Details may vary, but the general narrative remains the same: when hostile nonbelievers attack the village, the patron saint of the church foils them.

Griffith uncovers the meanings behind the devotional uses of religious art from a variety of perspectives--from artist to audience, preservationist to community member. The religious artworks transcend art objects, Griffith believes, and function as ways of communicating between this world and the next. Setting the stage with a brief geography, Griffith introduces us to roadside shrines, artists, fiestas, saints, and miracles. Full-color images add to the pleasure of this delightful journey through the churches and towns of Sonora.
Eakins Revealed: The Secret Life of an American Artist
Eakins Revealed
The Secret Life of an American Artist
Hardcover      ISBN: 0195156684

Thomas Eakins is widely considered one of the great American painters, an artist whose uncompromising realism helped move American art from the Victorian era into the modern age. He is also acclaimed as a paragon of integrity, one who stood up for his artistic beliefs even when they brought him personal and professional difficulty--as when he was fired from the Pennsylvania Academy of Art for removing a model's loincloth in a drawing class.
Yet beneath the surface of Eakins's pictures is a sense of brooding unease and latent violence--a discomfort voiced by one of his sitters who said his portrait "decapitated" her. In Eakins Revealed, art historian Henry Adams examines the dark side of Eakins's life and work, in a startling new biography that will change our understanding of this American icon. Based on close study of Eakins's work and new research in the Bregler papers, a major collection never fully mined by scholars, this volume shows Eakins was not merely uncompromising, but harsh and brutal both in his personal life and in his painting. Adams uncovers the bitter personal feuds and family tragedies surrounding Eakins--his mother died insane and his niece committed suicide amid allegations that Eakins had seduced her--and documents the artist's tendency toward psychological abuse and sexual harassment of those around him.
This provocative book not only unveils new facts about Eakins's life; more important, it makes sense, for the first time, of the enigmas of his work. Eakins Revealed promises to be a controversial biography that will attract readers inside and outside the art world, and fascinate anyone concerned with the mystery of artistic genius.

Impressions Of New York: Prints From The New York Historical Society
Impressions Of New York
Prints From The New York Historical Society
Hardcover      ISBN: 1568984928

From its birth as a remote trading outpost on the fringes of the Dutch empire to its current status as the so-called Capital of the World, New York has always captivated visual artists. The extraordinary prints collected by the New-York Historical Society over the course of its history vividly preserve these impressions on paper. In this handsome volume more than 150 of these views of the city -- including two spectacular gatefold panoramas -- speak eloquently of the surging power of this dynamic urban center. At the same time, they present an intimate portrait of everyday life as it has been lived and savored in this great city for more than three centuries.
The companion to an exhibition celebrating the New-York Historical Society's bicentennial anniversary, this beautifully printed volume presents a full range of historic images, from 1672 to the present. In the lively essay and information-filled captions, curator and historian Marilyn Symmes tells the unique stories behind the people and places, parks and buildings, streets and neighborhoods, parades and events depicted in each image -- in essence, the story of New York City itself.

Moving Pictures: American Art and Early Film 1880-1910
Moving Pictures
American Art and Early Film 1880-1910
Hardcover      ISBN: 1555952283

This publication explores the complex relationship between American art and early film. Depicting turn-of-the-century photographs, film stills, posters, prints and paintings, the struggle between art and film is shown to both polarise and inspire the artists of the era. (With DVD)