Between 1760 and 1800, British aristocrats became preoccupied with the acquisition of ancient Greek and Roman artifacts. From marble busts to intricately painted vases, these antiquities were amassed in vast collections held in country houses and libraries throughout Britain. In Fabricating the Antique, Viccy Coltman examines these objects and their owners, as well as dealers, restorers, designers, and manufacturers. She provides a close look at the classical revival that resulted in this obsession with collecting antiques.
Looking at the theoretical foundations of neoclassicism, Coltman contends this reinvention of ancient material culture was more than a fabrication of style. Based in the strong emphasis on classical education during this time, neoclassicism, Coltman claims, could be more accurately described as a style of thought translated into material possessions. Fabricating the Antique is a new take on both well-known collections of ancient art and newly cataloged artifacts. This book also covers how these objects—once removed from their original context—were received, preserved, and displayed. Art historians, classicists, and archaeologists alike will benefit from this important examination of British eighteenth-century history.
In the rolling hills of the Limburg Province, near the village of Margraten, they slowly loom up, row after row: thousands of white marble crosses and Stars of David. They mark the final resting place of American soldiers who died fighting to liberate the Netherlands during World War II. While the headstones provide the names and ages of those lost, they cannot tell us who these soldiers were, what their lives were like, or who they left behind. Nor can the peace and quiet at the only American military cemetery in the Netherlands reflect the harrowing experience and violent final moments of the men and women who forever rest here.
Through hundreds of personal photographs and more than 250 stories, The Faces of Margraten gives these soldiers faces and voices again, telling not only the history of World War II and the ending of the German occupation of the Netherlands, but also revealing how and why the Dutch people have never forgotten their liberators. Concluding with a list of all the soldiers’ names, this commemorative book stands as a testament to the service and sacrifice of the more than 10,000 Americans buried or memorialized as missing in Margraten.
Though blacks were not often seen on the streets of seventeenth-century London, they were already capturing the British imagination. For two hundred years, as Britain shipped over three million Africans to the New World, popular images of blacks as slaves and servants proliferated in London art, both highbrow and low. Catherine Molineux assembles a surprising array of sources in her exploration of this emerging black presence, from shop signs, tea trays, trading cards, board games, playing cards, and song ballads to more familiar objects such as William Hogarth’s graphic satires. By idealizing black servitude and obscuring the brutalities of slavery, these images of black people became symbols of empire to a general populace that had little contact with the realities of slave life in the distant Americas and Caribbean.
The earliest images advertised the opulence of the British Empire by depicting black slaves and servants as minor, exotic characters who gazed adoringly at their masters. Later images showed Britons and Africans in friendly gatherings, smoking tobacco together, for example. By 1807, when Britain abolished the slave trade and thousands of people of African descent were living in London as free men and women, depictions of black laborers in local coffee houses, taverns, or kitchens took center stage.
Molineux’s well-crafted account provides rich evidence for the role that human traffic played in the popular consciousness and culture of Britain during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries and deepens our understanding of how Britons imagined their burgeoning empire.
Helen Macdonald Reaktion Books, 2006 Library of Congress QL696.F34M33 2006 | Dewey Decimal 598.96
A sacred god, a military tool, an erotic symbol: the falcon is a natural wonder of speed, power, beauty, and ferocity that has become embedded in human cultures in myriad ways. Helen Macdonald's Falcon examines the diverse symbolism and roles attached to the falcon throughout the centuries.
Macdonald presents a cultural and natural history of the falcon that spans the globe and several millennia. Her wide-ranging survey considers the many facets of the falcon, including conservation efforts; the sport of falconry; and the use of falcons in secret military projects by the Third Reich and the U.S. space program. Falcon also explores the rich imagery of the falcon over history, including the veneration of falcons as gods in ancient Egypt, their role in erotic stories, and even the use of falcons in advertising to promote photocopiers and jet planes.
Filled with illustrations and a wealth of fascinating facts, Falcon will be an enjoyable guide for ornithologists, amateur birdwatchers, and nature lovers alike.
If, as a child, you conducted conversations with beloved dolls, or if, as an adult, you have entered virtual worlds inhabited by digital humans who inspire devotion in real people, you have participated in one of humanity’s most potent yet least explored traditions. Falling in love (and out of love) with statues, George Hersey reveals here, has been an instrumental practice since antiquity in our efforts to understand, improve, and empower ourselves.
Hersey’s history of statue love begins in Cyprus, home of the legendary sculptor Pygmalion, who famously grew enamored of his own creation. Examining the island’s prehistoric images of Aphrodite—the love goddess who brought Pygmalion’s sculpture to life—Hersey traces the origins of statue love back to the Cypriot followers who adored her terra-cotta likenesses. He goes on to explore ideas about human replicas in the works of Empedocles, Aristotle, Lucretius, and Ovid, whose definitive account of the Pygmalion myth introduced the notion that statues have the potential to induce physical responses in their viewers. Finding avatars of Ovid’s living image in everything from pagan idols and early Christian statuary to eighteenth-century painting to modern action figures and marionettes, Hersey concludes by investigating the concern that these automata will eventually replace humans.
In the process, he narrates a powerful history of artificial life at a moment when—with the development of robot soldiers, ever more sophisticated genetic engineering, and a continually expanding digital universe—it seems more real than ever.
Fan Phenomena: Mermaids
Edited by Matthieu Guitton Intellect Books, 2016 Library of Congress GR910.M46 2016 | Dewey Decimal 398.45
Disney’s Princess Ariel would give anything to be “where the people are,” but little does she know there’s an ever-growing fan base of humans dying to be down in the ocean where she is. Movies like the Little Mermaid and Pirates of the Caribbean have sparked the interest of newer generations of mermaid fans, but our enchantment with these mythical creatures of the sea goes back for centuries. Fan Phenomena: Mermaids takes a deep dive into these fascinations and the cultural creations that mermaids inspire among fans of all ages.
Mermaids, and merfolk more generally, are everywhere you look. Merfolk devotees march in themed parades and practice mermaid-ing—swimming with a mermaid tail. There’s mermaid fiction and mermaid virtual reality; mermaid art and #mermaid trends. You may not know it, but transgenerational merfolk fan communities stretch around the world—from sea to shining sea. And their popularity is only growing.
In Fan Phenomena: Mermaids, Matthieu Guitton assembles a star-studded cast of scholars and popular culture insiders to decode the mermaid phenomenon. The book explores how merfolk have evolved in popular culture and what it is that grants them their privileged status among fantasy creatures. Illustrated throughout with fan photographs and stills from a plethora of films and TV shows, this new addition to the Fan Phenomena series promises to both fascinate and delight readers—earthbound and ocean-going alike.
From a decidedly inauspicious start as a low-rated television series in the 1960s that was cancelled after three seasons, Star Trek has grown to a multi-billion dollar industry of spin-off series, feature films, and merchandise. Fueling the ever-expanding franchise are some of the most rabid and loyal fans in the universe, known affectionately as Trekkies. Perhaps no other community so typifies fandom as the devoted aficionados of the Star Trek television series, motion pictures, novels, comic books, and conventions. Indeed, in many respects, Star Trek fans created modern fan culture and continue to push its frontiers with elaborate fan-generated video productions, electronic fan fiction collectives, and a proliferation of tribute sites in cyberspace.
In this anthology, a panel of rising and established popular culture scholars examines the phenomenon of Star Trek fan culture and its most compelling dimensions. The book explores such topics as the impact of the recent “rebooting” of the iconic franchise on its fan base; the complicated and often contentious relationship between Star Trek and its lesbian and gay fans; the adaptation of Star Trek to other venues, including live theatre, social media, and gaming; fan hyperreality, including parody and non-geek fandom; one iconic actor’s social agenda; and alternative fan reactions to the franchise’s villains. The resulting collection is both snapshot and moving picture of the practices and attitudes of a fan culture that is arguably the world’s best-known and most misunderstood.
Striking a balanced tone, the contributors are critical yet respectful, acknowledging the uniquely close and enduring relationship between fans and the franchise while approaching it with appropriate objectivity, distance, and scope. Accessible to a variety of audiences—from the newcomer to fan culture to those already well-read on the subject—this book will be heralded by fans as well as serious scholars.
In October 2012, the Walt Disney Company paid more than $4 billion to acquire Lucasfilms, the film and production company responsible for Howard the Duck. But Disney, despite its history and success with duck characters, wasn’t after Howard; in buying Lucasfilms, it also bought the rights to the Star Wars franchise. Soon after the purchase, Disney announced a new Star Wars film was in the works and would be released in 2015, nearly four decades after the first movie hit big screens around the world and changed popular culture forever.
The continued relevance of Star Wars owes much to the passion of its fans. For millions of people around the world, the films are more than diversions—they are a way of life. Through costumed role-playing, incessant quoting, Yoda-like grammatical inversions, and scholarly debates about the Force, fans keep the films alive in a variety of ways, and in so doing, add to the saga’s cultural relevance. The first book to address the films holistically and from a variety of cultural perspectives, Fan Phenomena: Star Wars explores numerous aspects of Star Wars fandom, from its characters to its philosophy. As one contributor notes, “the saga that George Lucas created affects our lives almost daily, whether we ourselves are fans of the saga or not.” Anyone who is struggling to forget Jar Jar Binks can certainly agree to that.
Academically informed but written for a general audience, this book will appeal to every fan and critic of the films. That is, all of us.
Redefining the artistic movement that helped shape American modernism
In the early decades of the twentieth century, a loose contingent of artists working in and around New York City gave rise to the aesthetic movement known as Precisionism, primarily remembered for its exacting depictions of skyscrapers, factories, machine parts, and other symbols of a burgeoning modernity. Although often regarded as a singular group, these artists were remarkably varied in their subject matter and stylistic traits. Fantasies of Precision excavates the surprising ties that connected them, exploring notions of precision across philosophy, technology, medicine, and many other fields.
Bookended by discussions of the landmark First Biennial Exhibition of Painting at the Whitney Museum in 1932, this study weaves together a series of interconnected chapters illuminating the careers of Charles Sheeler, Georgia O’Keeffe, and Charles Demuth. Built on a theoretical framework of the writing of modernist poets Marianne Moore and William Carlos Williams, Fantasies of Precision outlines an “ethos of precision” that runs through the diverse practices of these artists, articulating how the broad range of enigmatic imagery they produced was underpinned by shared strategies of restraint, humility, and slowness.
Questioning straightforward modes of art historical classification, Ashley Lazevnick redefines the concept that designated the Precisionist movement. Through its cross-disciplinary approach and unique blend of historiography and fantasy, Fantasies of Precision offers a comprehensive reevaluation of one of the defining movements of artistic modernism.
Cover alt text: Charles Sheeler painting, “Upper Deck,” of white machinery in sunlight is framed by thin, intersecting lines. Title appears above and below.
This abundantly illustrated book is an illuminating exploration of the impact of medieval imagery on three hundred years of visual culture.
From the soaring castles of Sleeping Beauty to the bloody battles of Game of Thrones, from Middle-earth in The Lord of the Rings to mythical beasts in Dungeons & Dragons, and from Medieval Times to the Renaissance Faire, the Middle Ages have inspired artists, playwrights, filmmakers, gamers, and writers for centuries. Indeed, no other historical era has captured the imaginations of so many creators.
This volume aims to uncover the many reasons why the Middle Ages have proven so applicable to a variety of modern moments from the eighteenth through the twenty-first century. These “medieval” worlds are often the perfect ground for exploring contemporary cultural concerns and anxieties, saying much more about the time and place in which they were created than they do about the actual conditions of the medieval period. With over 140 color illustrations, from sources ranging from thirteenth-century illuminated manuscripts to contemporary films and video games, and a preface by Game of Thrones costume designer Michele Clapton, The Fantasy of the Middle Ages will surprise and delight both enthusiasts and scholars.
This title is published to accompany an exhibition on view at the J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center from June 21 to September 11, 2022.
Finalist, 2021 Writers’ League of Texas Book Award
Regarded as both a legend and a villain, the critic Dave Hickey has inspired generations of artists, art critics, musicians, and writers. His 1993 book The Invisible Dragon became a cult hit for its potent and provocative critique of the art establishment and its call to reconsider the role of beauty in art. His next book, 1997’s Air Guitar, introduced a new kind of cultural criticism—simultaneously insightful, complicated, vulnerable, and down-to-earth—that propelled Hickey to fame as an iconoclastic thinker, loved and loathed in equal measure, whose influence extended beyond the art world.
Far from Respectable is a focused, evocative exploration of Hickey’s work, his impact on the field of art criticism, and the man himself, from his Huck Finn childhood to his drug-fueled periods as both a New York gallerist and Nashville songwriter to, finally, his anointment as a tenured professor and MacArthur Fellow. Drawing on in-person interviews with Hickey, his friends and family, and art world comrades and critics, Daniel Oppenheimer examines the controversial writer’s distinctive takes on a broad range of subjects, including Norman Rockwell, Robert Mapplethorpe, academia, Las Vegas, basketball, country music, and considers how Hickey and his vision of an “ethical, cosmopolitan paganism” built around a generous definition of art is more urgently needed than ever before.
There is a tension between the requirements of theoretical abstraction and the capacities of the film medium, where everything that we see on screen is concrete: A train arriving at a station, a tree, bodies, faces. Since the complex theories of montage in Soviet cinema, however, there have continuously been attempts to express theoretical issues by combining shots, thus creating a visual form of thinking. This book brings together two major filmmakers-French New Wave master Jean-Luc Godard and German avant-gardist Harun Farocki to explore the fundamental tension between theoretical abstraction and the capacities of film itself, a medium where everything seen onscreen is necessarily concrete. Volker Pantenburg shows how these two filmmakers explored the potential of combined shots and montage to create "film as theory."
What do our clothes say about who we are or who we think we are? How does the way we dress communicate messages about our identity? Is the desire to be "in fashion" universal, or is it unique to Western culture? How do fashions change? These are just a few of the intriguing questions Fred Davis sets out to answer in this provocative look at what we do with our clothes—and what they can do to us.
Much of what we assume to be individual preference, Davis shows, really reflects deeper social and cultural forces. Ours is an ambivalent social world, characterized by tensions over gender roles, social status, and the expression of sexuality. Predicting what people will wear becomes a risky gamble when the link between private self and public persona can be so unstable.
Fashion in the Middle Ages
Margaret Scott J. Paul Getty Trust, The, 2018 Library of Congress ND3344.S36 2011 | Dewey Decimal 391.00902
From the costly velvets and furs worn by kings to the undyed wools and rough linens of the peasantry, the clothing worn by the various classes in the Middle Ages played an integral role in medieval society. In addition to providing clues to status, profession, and/or geographic origin, textiles were a crucial element in the economies of many countries and cities.
Much of what is known about medieval fashion is gleaned from the pages of manuscripts, which serve as a rich source of imagery. This volume provides a detailed look at both the actual fabrics and composition of medieval clothing as well as the period’s attitude toward fashion through an exploration of illuminated manuscripts in the collection of the J. Paul Getty Museum. The last portion of the book is dedicated to the depiction of clothing in biblical times and the ancient world as seen through a medieval lens. Throughout, excerpts from literary sources of the period help shed light on the perceived role and function of fashion in daily life.
The companion volume to Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art’s first fashion exhibition, Fashioning America: Grit to Glamour celebrates the history of American attire, from the cowboy boot to the zoot suit. From dresses worn by First Ladies to art-inspired garments to iconic moments in fashion that defined a generation, Fashioning America showcases uniquely American expressions of innovation, spotlighting stories of designers and wearers that center on opportunity and self-invention, and amplifying the voices of those who are often left out of dominant fashion narratives.
With nearly one hundred illustrations of garments and accessories that span two centuries of design, Fashioning America celebrates the achievements of a wide array of makers—especially immigrants, Native Americans, and Black Americans. Incorporating essays by fashion historians, curators, and journalists, this volume takes a fresh look at the country’s fashion history while exploring its close relationship with Hollywood and media in general, illuminating the role that American designers have played in shaping global visual culture and demonstrating why American fashion has long resonated around the world.
If baseball is the sport of nostalgic prose, basketball’s movement, myths, and culture are truly at home in verse. In this extraordinary collection of essays, poets meditate on what basketball means to them: how it has changed their perspective on the craft of poetry; how it informs their sense of language, the body, and human connectedness; how their love of the sport made a difference in the creation of their poems and in the lives they live beyond the margins. Walt Whitman saw the origins of poetry as communal, oral myth making. The same could be said of basketball, which is the beating heart of so many neighborhoods and communities in this country and around the world. On the court and on the page, this “poetry in motion” can be a force of change and inspiration, leaving devoted fans wonderstruck.
Life in the modernist era not only moved, it sped. As automobiles, airplanes, and high-speed industrial machinery proliferated at the turn of the twentieth century, a fascination with speed influenced artists—from Moscow to Manhattan—working in a variety of media. Russian avant-garde literary, visual, and cinematic artists were among those striving to elevate the ordinary physical concept of speed into a source of inspiration and generate new possibilities for everyday existence.
Although modernism arrived somewhat late in Russia, the increased tempo of life at the start of the twentieth century provided Russia’s avant-garde artists with an infusion of creative dynamism and crucial momentum for revolutionary experimentation. In Fast Forward Tim Harte presents a detailed examination of the images and concepts of speed that permeated Russian modernist poetry, visual arts, and cinema. His study illustrates how a wide variety of experimental artistic tendencies of the day—such as “rayism” in poetry and painting, the effort to create a “transrational” language (zaum’) in verse, and movements seemingly as divergent as neo-primitivism and constructivism—all relied on notions of speed or dynamism to create at least part of their effects. Fast Forward reveals how the Russian avant-garde’s race to establish a new artistic and social reality over a twenty-year span reflected an ambitious metaphysical vision that corresponded closely to the nation’s rapidly changing social parameters. The embrace of speed after the 1917 Revolution, however, paradoxically hastened the movement’s demise. By the late 1920s, under a variety of historical pressures, avant-garde artistic forms morphed into those more compatible with the political agenda of the Russian state. Experimentation became politically suspect and abstractionism gave way to orthodox realism, ultimately ushering in the socialist realism and aesthetic conformism of the Stalin years.
The revival of the Olympic games in 1896 and the subsequent rise of modern athletics prompted a new, energetic movement away from more sedentary habits. In Russia, this ethos soon became a key facet of the Bolsheviks' shared vision for the future. In the aftermath of the revolution, glorification of exercise persevered, pointing the way toward a stronger, healthier populace and a vibrant Socialist society.
With interdisciplinary analysis of literature, painting, and film, Faster, Higher, Stronger, Comrades! traces how physical fitness had an even broader impact on culture and ideology in the Soviet Union than previously realized. From prerevolutionary writers and painters glorifying popular circus wrestlers to Soviet photographers capturing unprecedented athleticism as a means of satisfying their aesthetic ideals, the nation's artists embraced sports in profound, inventive ways. Though athletics were used for doctrinaire purposes, Tim Harte demonstrates that at their core, they remained playful, joyous physical activities capable of stirring imaginations and transforming everyday realities.
Fear Reverence Terror
Carlo Ginzburg Seagull Books, 2017 Library of Congress N72.P6G562 2017 | Dewey Decimal 701.03
We are surrounded by images, fairly drowning in them. From our cell phones to our computers, from our televisions at home to the screens that light up while we wait in the grocery store checkout line, images of all kinds are seducing us, commanding us to buy!, scaring us, dazzling us.
Fear, Reverence, Terror invites us to look at images slowly, with the help of a few examples: Picasso’s Guernica, the “Lord Kitchener Wants You” World War I recruitment poster, Jacques-Louis David’s Marat, the frontispiece of Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan, a cup of gilded silver with scenes from the conquest of the New World. Are these political images, Carlo Ginzburg asks? Yes, because every image is, in a sense, political—an instrument of power. Tacitus once wrote, unforgettably, that we are enslaved by lies of which we ourselves are the authors. Is it possible to break this bond? Fear, Reverence, Terror will answer this question.
Praise for Ginzburg
“Ginzburg has many claims to be considered the outstanding European historian of the generation which came of age in the late Sixties. Certainly few have equalled him in originality, variety, and audacity.”—London Review of Books
“Ginzburg’s scholarship is dazzling and profound.”—Publisher’s Weekly
To read accounts of late medieval banquets is to enter a fantastical world where live lions guard nude statues, gilded stags burst into song, and musicians play from within pies. We can almost hear the clock sound from within a glass castle, taste the fire-breathing roast boar, and smell the rose water cascading in a miniature fountain. Such vivid works of art and performance required collaboration among artists in many fields, as well as the participation of the audience.
A Feast for the Eyes is the first book-length study of the court banquets of northwestern Europe in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. Christina Normore draws on an array of artworks, archival documents, chroniclers’ accounts, and cookbooks to re-create these events and reassess the late medieval visual culture in which banquets were staged. Feast participants, she shows, developed sophisticated ways of appreciating artistic skill and attending to their own processes of perception, thereby forging a court culture that delighted in the exercise of fine aesthetic judgment.
Challenging modern assumptions about the nature of artistic production and reception, A Feast for the Eyes yields fresh insight into the long history of multimedia work and the complex relationships between spectacle and spectators.
Founded in 1976 at the inception of the media arts movement, the Video Data Bank is the leading resource in the United States for videotapes by and about contemporary artists. The collections include seminal works that, seen as a whole, describe the development of video as an art form originating in the late 1960s and continuing to the present.The first printed catalog of the Video Data Bank's complete holdings, Feedback offers readers essays on the history of media arts, the Video Data Bank, video activism, experimental performance art, and the On Art and Artists Collection. It includes 325 frame grabs and stills from some of the collection's most important pieces and outlines the styles and directions taken by artists throughout the entire history of video art. An indispensable guide and reference for artists, students, teachers, and collectors, Feedback is an essential book for any film and video bookshelf.
In Feeling Media Miryam Sas explores the potentialities and limitations of media theory and media art in Japan. Opening media studies and affect theory up to a deeper engagement with works and theorists outside Euro-America, Sas offers a framework of analysis she calls the affective scale—the space where artists and theorists work between the level of the individual and larger global and historical shifts. She examines intermedia, experimental animation, and Marxist theories of the culture industries of the 1960s and 1970s in the work of artists and thinkers ranging from filmmaker Matsumoto Toshio, photographer Nakahira Takuma, and the Three Animators' Group to art critic Hanada Kiyoteru and landscape theorist Matsuda Masao. She also outlines how twenty-first-century Japanese artists—especially those responding to the Fukushima disaster—adopt and adapt this earlier work to reframe ideas about collectivity, community, and connectivity in the space between the individual and the system.
Sam Stourdzé Amsterdam University Press, 2014
The career of Federico Fellini lasted for forty years and made him perhaps the most illustrious of all the filmmakers to have come out of Italy. Those forty years saw the appearance of titles that have carved out a permanent niche in the memory of generations of film lovers. Fellini, a richly illustrated book written and edited by Sam Stourdzé, Director of the Musée de l'Elysée in Lausanne (Switzerland), taps into the sources of his fertile imagination and brings the vital power of his work into the limelight providing insight into the obsessions and motivations of the man behind La Strada, La Dolce Vita and 8¿.This book and the exhibition aim to reveal the universe of the filmmaker and the sources of his rich imagination, and to highlight the essential power of his work. The story of Fellini’s themes and obsessions is, twenty years after his death, told by movie stills, set photos and his drawings, as well as by archive material and posters.The fantasy world of Cinecittà, the studio where Fellini made so many of his films, is revealed through previously unseen behind-the-scenes pictures that were taken by photographers such as Gideon Bachmann, Deborah Beer, Pierluigi Praturlon and Paul Ronald.The publication includes four main chapters. Popular Culture concentrates on Fellini’s many sources of inspiration within the day-to-day popular culture of the time. This includes not only the steadily more prevalent mass media, but also such manifestations as the circus, rock music, cartoons and Catholic or political parades. Fellini at Work shows us the director on the film set, instructing his actors, working together with costume designers, behind the camera, and so on. The City of Women concerns Fellini’s most important subject and obsession: Woman, in all her many guises. Finally, Biographical Imagination presents Fellini in the guise of various doppelgangers, each reflecting a different aspect of his personality. Particular attention is given to his ‘Book of Dreams’ in which he recorded his dreams in words and drawings.
Felt provides a nonlinear look at the engagement of the postwar avant-garde with Eastern spirituality, a context in which the German artist Joseph Beuys appears as an uneasy shaman. Centered on a highly publicized yet famously inconclusive 1982 meeting between Beuys and the Dalai Lama, arranged by the Dutch artist Louwrien Wijers, Chris Thompson explores the interconnections among Beuys, the Fluxus movement, and Eastern philosophy and spiritual practice.
Building from the resonance of felt, the fabric, in both Tibetan culture and in Beuys’s art, Thompson takes as his point of departure Deleuze and Guattari’s discussion in A Thousand Plateaus of felt as smooth space that is “in principle infinite, open, and unlimited in every direction,” its structure determined by chance as opposed to the planned, woven nature of most fabrics. Felt is thus seen as an alternative to the model of the network: felt’s anarchic form is not reducible to the regularity of the net, grid, or mesh, and the more it is pulled, tweaked, torn, and agitated, the greater its structural integrity.
Felt thus invents its methodology from the material that represents its object of inquiry and from this advances a reading of the avant-garde. At the same time, Thompson demonstrates that it is sometimes the failures of thought, the disappointing meetings, even the untimely deaths that open portals through which life flows into art and allows new conjunctions of life, art, and thought. Thompson explores both the well-known engagement of Fluxus artists with Eastern spirituality and the more elusive nature of Beuys’s own late interest in Tibetan culture, arriving at a sense of how such noncausal interactions—interhuman intrigue—create culture and shape contemporary art history.
When the term “postfeminism” entered the media lexicon in the 1990s, it was often accompanied by breathless headlines about the “death of feminism.” Those reports of feminism’s death may have been greatly exaggerated, and yet contemporary popular culture often conjures up a world in which feminism had never even been born, a fictional universe filled with suburban Stepford wives, maniacal career women, alluring amnesiacs, and other specimens of retro femininity.
In Feminism and Popular Culture, Rebecca Munford and Melanie Waters consider why the twenty-first century media landscape is so haunted by the ghosts of these traditional figures that feminism otherwise laid to rest. Why, over fifty years since Betty Friedan’s critique, does the feminine mystique exert such a strong spectral presence, and how has it been reimagined to speak to the concerns of a postfeminist audience?
To answer these questions, Munford and Waters draw from a rich array of examples from contemporary film, fiction, music, and television, from the shadowy cityscapes of Homeland to the haunted houses of American Horror Story. Alongside this comprehensive analysis of today’s popular culture, they offer a vivid portrait of feminism’s social and intellectual history, as well as an innovative application of Jacques Derrida’s theories of “hauntology.” Feminism and Popular Culture thus not only considers how contemporary media is being visited by the ghosts of feminism’s past, it raises vital questions about what this means for feminism’s future.
A comprehensive collection of texts from the most influential and iconic figure of Italian second-wave feminism.
Recently rediscovered in Italy and abroad, the works of Carla Lonzi tend to fall under the remit of art history or feminist theory. Art historians focus on the texts written in the 1960s, when Lonzi was still actively working as a critic, whereas feminist scholars engage with her more openly political interventions, published after her declared embrace of a separatist feminism. In 1970 Lonzi decided to leave the art world for good and dedicate herself to her newly founded feminist collective, Rivolta Femminile. While recognizing the break in Lonzi’s life and work, this anthology maps the overall arc of her intellectual and political production, giving equal weight to her seminal contributions to art criticism and her trailblazing feminist writings. A comprehensive collection of texts from the most influential and iconic figure of Italian second-wave feminism, Feminism in Revolt seeks to shed light on Lonzi’s versatile approach to literary genres and compositions by juxtaposing essayistic texts, poems, diary excerpts, and manifestos.
While Indonesian contemporary art is currently on the rise on the international art scene, there hasn't yet been an in-depth study of the works of Indonesian women artists and the feminist strategies they employ within the art world. This book fills that gap, presenting the first comprehensive study of feminisms and contemporary art in Indonesia; using feminist readings to analyse the works of Indonesian women artists historically and today; illuminating the sociocultural contexts in which they have worked; and offering a nuanced understanding of local feminisms in the nation.
This collection brings together an exciting group of established and emerging scholars to consider the history of feminist film theory and new developments in the field and in film culture itself. Opening the field up to urgent questions and covering such topics as new experimental film, the digital image, consumerism, activism, and pornography, Feminisms will be essential reading for scholars of both film and feminism.
The Femme Fatale
Julie Grossman Rutgers University Press, 2020 Library of Congress PN1995.9.F44G65 2020 | Dewey Decimal 791.436522
Ostensibly the villain, but also a model of female power, poise, and intelligence, the femme fatale embodies Hollywood’s contradictory attitudes toward ambitious women. But how has the figure of the femme fatale evolved over time, and to what extent have these changes reflected shifting cultural attitudes toward female independence and sexuality?
This book offers readers a concise look at over a century of femmes fatales on both the silver screen and the TV screen. Starting with ethnically exoticized silent film vamps like Theda Bara and Pola Negri, it examines classic film noir femmes fatales like Barbara Stanwyck in Double Indemnity, as well as postmodern revisions of the archetype in films like Basic Instinct and Memento. Finally, it explores how contemporary film and television creators like Fleabag and Killing Eve’s Phoebe Waller-Bridge have appropriated the femme fatale in sympathetic and surprising ways.
Analyzing not only the films themselves, but also studio press kits and reviews, The Femme Fatale considers how discourses about the pleasures and dangers of female performance are projected onto the figure of the femme fatale. Ultimately, it is a celebration of how “bad girl” roles have provided some of Hollywood’s most talented actresses opportunities to fully express their on-screen charisma.
Over the course of his career Werner Herzog, known for such visionary masterpieces as Aguirre: The Wrath of God (1972) and The Enigma of Kaspar Hauser (1974), has directed almost sixty films, roughly half of which are documentaries. And yet, in a statement delivered during a public appearance in 1999, the filmmaker declared: “There are deeper strata of truth in cinema, and there is such a thing as poetic, ecstatic truth. It is mysterious and elusive, and can be reached only through fabrication and imagination and stylization.” Ferocious Reality is the first book to ask how this conviction, so hostile to the traditional tenets of documentary, can inform the work of one of the world’s most provocative documentarians.
Herzog, whose Cave of Forgotten Dreams was perhaps the most celebrated documentary of 2010, may be the most influential filmmaker missing from major studies and histories of documentary. Examining such notable films as Lessons of Darkness (1992) and Grizzly Man (2005), Eric Ames shows how Herzog dismisses documentary as a mode of filmmaking in order to creatively intervene and participate in it. In close, contextualized analysis of more than twenty-five films spanning Herzog’s career, Ames makes a case for exploring documentary films in terms of performance and explains what it means to do so. Thus his book expands the field of cinema studies even as it offers an invaluable new perspective on a little studied but integral part of Werner Herzog’s extraordinary oeuvre.
What might become of anthropology if it were to suspend its sometime claims to be a social science? What if it were to turn instead to exploring its affinities with art and literature as a mode of engaged creative practice carried forward in a world heterogeneously composed of humans and other than humans? Stuart McLean claims that anthropology stands to learn most from art and literature not as “evidence” to support explanations based on an appeal to social context or history but as modes of engagement with the materiality of expressive media—including language—that always retain the capacity to disrupt or exceed the human projects enacted through them.
At once comparative in scope and ethnographically informed, Fictionalizing Anthropology draws on an eclectic range of sources, including ancient Mesopotamian myth, Norse saga literature, Hesiod, Lucretius, Joyce, Artaud, and Lispector, as well as film, multimedia, and performance art, along with the concept of “fabulation” (the making of fictions capable of intervening in and transforming reality) developed in the writings of Bergson and Deleuze. Sharing with proponents of anthropology’s recent “ontological turn,” McLean insists that experiments with language and form are a performative means of exploring alternative possibilities of collective existence, new ways of being human and other than human, and that such experiments must therefore be indispensable to anthropology’s engagement with the contemporary world.
Barbara Stafford is a pioneering art historian whose research has long helped to bridge the divide between the humanities and cognitive sciences. In A Field Guide to a New Meta-Field, she marshals a distinguished group of thinkers to forge a ground-breaking dialogue between the emerging brain sciences, the liberal arts, and social sciences.
Stafford’s book examines meaning and mental function from this dual experimental perspective. The wide-ranging essays included here—from Frank Echenhofer’s foray into shamanist hallucinogenic visions to David Bashwiner’s analysis of emotion and danceability—develop a common language for implementing programmatic and institutional change. Demonstrating how formerly divided fields are converging around shared issues, A Field Guide to a New Meta-Field maps a high-level, crossdisciplinary adventure from one of our leading figures in visual studies.
What is the relation of art and history? What is art today? Why does art affect us? In Field Notes on the Visual Arts, seventy-five scholars, curators, and artists traverse chronology and geography to reveal the meanings and dilemmas of art. Organized under seven major headings—anthropomorphism, appropriation, contingency, detail, materiality, time, and tradition—the contributions are written by historians of art, literature, culture, and science, as well as archaeologists, anthropologists, philosophers, curators, and artists. By bringing together voices that are generally separated both inside and outside the academy, Field Notes on the Visual Arts makes clear that the work of art is both meaningful and resistant to meaning.
Field research—the collection of information outside a lab or workplace setting—requires skills and knowledge not typically taught in the classroom. Fieldwork demands exploratory inquisitiveness, empathy to encourage interviewees to trust the researcher, and sufficient aptitude to work professionally and return home safely. The Field Researcher’s Handbook provides a practical guide to planning and executing fieldwork and presenting the results.
Based on his experience conducting field research in more than fifty countries and teaching others a holistic approach to field research, David J. Danelo introduces the skills new researchers will need in the field, including anthropology, travel logistics planning, body language recognition, interview preparation, storytelling, network development, and situational awareness. His time as a combat veteran in the US Marine Corps further enhances his knowledge of how to be observant and operate safely in any environment. Danelo also discusses ethical considerations and how to recognize personal biases. This handbook is intended for researchers in a variety of academic disciplines but also for government, think-tank, and private-sector researchers.
Fieldworks offers a historical account of the social, rhetorical, and material attempts to ground art and poetry in the physicality of a site.
Arguing that place-oriented inquiries allowed poets and artists to develop new, experimental models of historiography and ethnography, Lytle Shaw draws out the shifting terms of this practice from World War II to the present through a series of illuminating case studies. Beginning with the alternate national genealogies unearthed by William Carlos Williams in Paterson and Charles Olson in Gloucester, Shaw demonstrates how subsequent poets sought to ground such inquiries in concrete social formations—to in effect live the poetics of place: Gary Snyder in his back-to-the-land familial compound, Kitkitdizze; Amiri Baraka in a black nationalist community in Newark; Robert Creeley and the poets of Bolinas, California, in the capacious “now” of their poet-run town. Turning to the work of Robert Smithson—who called one of his essays an “appendix to Paterson,” and who in turn has exerted a major influence on poets since the 1970s—Shaw then traces the emergence of site-specific art in relation both to the poetics of place and to the larger linguistic turn in the humanities, considering poets including Clark Coolidge, Bernadette Mayer, and Lisa Robertson.
By putting the poetics of place into dialog with site-specificity in art, Shaw demonstrates how poets and artists became experimental explicators not just of concrete locations and their histories, but of the discourses used to interpret sites more broadly. It is this dual sense of fieldwork that organizes Shaw’s groundbreaking history of site-specific poetry.
No bird is common, if we use “common” to mean ordinary. But birds that are seen more commonly than others can seem less noteworthy than species that are rarely glimpsed. In this gathering of essays and illustrations celebrating fifty of the most common birds of the Upper Midwest, illustrator Dana Gardner and writer Nancy Overcott encourage us to take a closer look at these familiar birds with renewed appreciation for their not-so-ordinary beauty and lifeways.Beginning with the garishly colored male and the more gently colored female wood duck, whose tree cavity nest serves as a launching pad for ducklings in the summer months, and ending on a bright yellow note with the American goldfinch, whose cheerful presence enlivens the midwestern landscape all year long, Overcott combines field observations drawn from her twenty-plus years of living and birding in Minnesota's Big Woods with anecdotes and data from other ornithologists to portray each species' life cycle, its vocalizations and appearance, and its habitat, food, and foraging methods as well as migration patterns and distribution. Infused with a dedication to conserving natural resources, her succinct yet personable prose forms an ideal complement to Gardner's watercolors as this renowned illustrator of avian life worldwide revisits the birds of his childhood. Together art and text ensure that the wild turkey, great blue heron, sharp-shinned hawk, barred owl, pileated woodpecker, house wren, ovenbird, field sparrow, rose-breasted grosbeak, red-winged blackbird, and forty other species of the Upper Midwest are never seen as common again.
Although the many common birds of the Upper Midwest are lovely to hear and see, there is no doubt that the uncommon birds attract more attention. In this gorgeously illustrated companion to their Fifty Common Birds of the Upper Midwest, which provided a new appreciation of the not-so-ordinary beauty and life ways of familiar birds, illustrator Dana Gardner and writer Nancy Overcott celebrate the rarer birds of the Upper Midwest.
The authors selected species that are uncommon because of dwindling populations, species that may be common elsewhere but not in the Upper Midwest, species that may be abundant one year and absent the next, and species that are usually present but seldom seen. Beginning with the surf scoter with its multicolored bill and ending with the gregarious evening grosbeak, which resembles a giant goldfinch, they pair watercolors of each species with text that portrays its life cycle, its vocalizations and distribution. Throughout, Overcott's personable text is infused with the pleasures of her twenty-plus years of living and birding in Minnesota's Big Woods and her dedication to preserving natural resources, and Gardner's paintings-each a gorgeous reminder of the rare qualities of these uncommon birds from this renowned illustrator of bird life worldwide-emphasize her call for conservation efforts.
The annotated bibliography includes online information about national and international organizations that focus on birds or that affect birds through conservation, as well as information about a variety of books and journals for beginning to experienced birders.
Over the past two hundred years, thousands of ancient Greek vases have been unearthed. Yet these artifacts remain a challenge: what did the images depicted on these vases actually mean to ancient Greek viewers? In this long-awaited book, Gloria Ferrari uses Athenian vases, literary evidence, and other works of art from the Archaic and Classical periods (520-400 B.C.) to investigate what these items can tell us about the ancient Greeks—specifically, their notions of gender.
Ferrari begins by developing a theoretical perspective on visual representation, arguing that artistic images give us access to how their subjects were imagined rather than to the way they really were. For instance, Ferrari's examinations of the many representations of women working wool reveal that these images constitute powerful metaphors—metaphors, she argues, which both reflect and construct Greek conceptions of the ideal woman and her ideal behavior.
From this perspective, Ferrari studies a number of icons representing blameless femininity and ideal masculinity to reevaluate the rites of passage by which girls are made ready for marriage and boys become men. Representations of the nude male body in Archaic statues known as kouroi, for example, symbolize manhood itself and shed new light on the much-discussed institution of paiderastia. And, in Ferrari's hands, imagery equating maidens with arable land and buried treasure provides a fresh view of Greek ideas of matrimony.
Innovative, thought-provoking, and insightful throughout, Figures of Speech is a powerful demonstration of how the study of visual images as well as texts can reshape our understanding of ancient Greek culture.
Figuring Faith and Female Power in the Art of Rubens argues that the Baroque painter, propagandist, and diplomat, Peter Paul Rubens, was not only aware of rapidly shifting religious and cultural attitudes toward women, but actively engaged in shaping them. Today, Rubens’s paintings continue to be used -- and abused -- to prescribe and proscribe certain forms of femininity. Repositioning some of the artist’s best-known works within seventeenth-century Catholic theology and female court culture, this book provides a feminist corrective to a body of art historical scholarship in which studies of gender and religion are often mutually exclusive. Moving chronologically through Rubens’s lengthy career, the author shows that, in relation to the powerful women in his life, Rubens figured the female form as a transhistorical carrier of meaning whose devotional and rhetorical efficacy was heightened rather than diminished by notions of female difference and particularity.
Offering particular insight into Filippino Lippi’s artistic problem-solving, an innovative look at the Renaissance master.
The first focused study of Filippino Lippi in a generation, and the first in English in over eighty years, this book presents a new understanding of the Renaissance master-artist. Celebrated as “ingenious” by Vasari in 1550, Filippino was highly praised and influential, then fell out of favor and was forgotten for centuries. He was rediscovered by the poet Swinburne, who in 1868 celebrated the painter’s “inventive enjoyment and indefatigable fancy.” In a similar spirit, this volume explores Filippino’s creativity in solving artistic problems. If a Roman cardinal requested a classically inspired work or a Florentine humanist wanted to dazzle observers with his antiquarian interests, Filippino had the sensitivity to understand these diverse needs and express them with highly original solutions.
Over the past decade, as digital media has expanded and print outlets have declined, pundits have bemoaned a “crisis of criticism” and mourned the “death of the critic.” Now that well-paying jobs in film criticism have largely evaporated, while blogs, message boards, and social media have given new meaning to the saying that “everyone’s a critic,” urgent questions have emerged about the status and purpose of film criticism in the twenty-first century.
In Film Criticism in the Digital Age, ten scholars from across the globe come together to consider whether we are witnessing the extinction of serious film criticism or seeing the start of its rebirth in a new form. Drawing from a wide variety of case studies and methodological perspectives, the book’s contributors find many signs of the film critic’s declining clout, but they also locate surprising examples of how critics—whether moonlighting bloggers or salaried writers—have been able to intervene in current popular discourse about arts and culture.
In addition to collecting a plethora of scholarly perspectives, Film Criticism in the Digital Age includes statements from key bloggers and print critics, like Armond White and Nick James. Neither an uncritical celebration of digital culture nor a jeremiad against it, this anthology offers a comprehensive look at the challenges and possibilities that the Internet brings to the evaluation, promotion, and explanation of artistic works.
Since cinema has entered the digital era, its very nature has come under renewed scrutiny. Countering the 'death of cinema' debate, Film History as Media Archaeology presents a robust argument for the cinema's current status as a new epistemological object, of interest to philosophers, while also examining the presence of moving images in the museum and art spaces as a challenge for art history. The current study is the fruit of some twenty years of research and writing at the interface of film history, media theory and media archaeology by one of the acknowledged pioneers of the 'new film history' and 'media archaeology'. It joins the efforts of other media scholars to locate cinema's historical emergence and subsequent transformations within the broader field of media change and interaction, as we experience them today.
Events of the past decade have dramatically rewritten the American national narrative, bringing to light an alternate history of nation, marked since the country’s origins by competing geopolitical interests, by mobility and migration, and by contending ethnic and racial groups.
In this revised and expanded edition of Film Nation, Robert Burgoyne analyzes films that give shape to the counternarrative that has emerged since 9/11—one that challenges the traditional myths of the American nation-state. The films examined here, Burgoyne argues, reveal the hidden underlayers of nation, from the first interaction between Europeans and Native Americans (The New World), to the clash of ethnic groups in nineteenth-century New York (Gangs of New York), to the haunting persistence of war in the national imagination (Flags of Our Fathers and Letters from Iwo Jima) and the impact of the events of 9/11 on American identity (United 93 and World Trade Center).
Film Nation provides innovative readings of attempts by such directors as Martin Scorsese, Clint Eastwood, and Oliver Stone to visualize historical events that have acquired a mythical aura in order to open up the past to the contemporary moment.
Film on The Faultline
Edited by Alan Wright Intellect Books, 2015 Library of Congress PN1995.9.D55F55 2015 | Dewey Decimal 791.4366
Film has always played a crucial role in the imagination of disaster. Earthquakes, especially, not only shift the ground beneath our feet but also herald a new way of thinking or being in the world. Following recent seismic events in countries as dissimilar as Iran, Chile and Haiti, Japan and New Zealand, national films have emerged that challenge ingrained political, economic, ethical, and ontological categories of modernity. Film on the Faultline explores the fractious relationship between cinema and seismic experience and addresses the important role that cinema can play in the wake of such events as forms of popular memory and personal testimony.
This book uses the potent case study of contemporary Taiwanese queer romance films to address the question of how capitalism in Taiwan has privileged the film industry at the expense of the audience's freedom to choose and respond to culture on its own terms. Interweaving in-depth interviews with filmmakers, producers, marketers, and spectators, Ya-Fong Mon takes a biopolitical approach to the question, showing how the industry uses investments in techno-science, ancillary marketing, and media convergence to seduce and control the sensory experience of the audience-yet that control only extends so far: volatility remains a key component of the film-going experience.
Before the advent of television, cinema offered serialized films as a source of weekly entertainment. This book traces the history from the days of silent screen heroines to the sound era's daring adventure serials, unearthing a thriving film culture beyond the self-contained feature. Through extensive archival research, Ilka Brasch details the aesthetic appeals of film serials within their context of marketing and exhibition, looking at how they adapted the pleasures of a flourishing crime fiction culture to both serial visual culture and the affordances of the media-modernity of the early 20th century. The study furthermore traces the relationship of film serials to the broadcast models of radio and television and thereby shows how film serials introduced modes of storytelling that informedpopular culture even beyond the serial's demise.
Louis Van Gasteren was one of the most prolific filmmakers in the history of the Netherlands, with a resume that includes nearly eighty documentaries and two feature films - to say nothing of artworks and books.
Filming for the Future offers an extended exploration of Van Gasteren's work and audio-visual world. Patricia Pisters introduces us to a filmmaker who always had his camera ready and was relentless in filming a wide range of topics and events of national and international importance. Fascinated by technology, deeply engaged with politics, and intensely occupied by the traumatic effects of war, Van Gasteren assembled an unparalleled record of life in twentieth-century Amsterdam and beyond. Filming for the Future will be an invaluable source of documentation and analysis of one of the key filmmakers of our time.
Filming the City brings together the work of filmmakers, architects, designers, video artists, and media specialists to provide three distinct prisms through which to examine the medium of film in the context of the city. The book presents commentaries on particular films and their social and urban relevance, offering contemporary criticisms of both film and urbanism from conflicting perspectives, and documenting examples of how to actively use the medium of film in the design of our cities, spaces and buildings. Bringing a diverse set of contributors to the collection, editors Edward Clift, Ari Mattes, and Mirko Guaralda offer readers a new approach to understanding the complex, multilayered interaction of urban design and film.
In this groundbreaking account of film history, Bettina Bildhauer shows how from the earliest silent films to recent blockbusters, medieval topics and plots have played an important but overlooked role in the development of cinema.
Filming the Middle Ages is the first book to define medieval films as a group and trace their history from silent film in Weimar Germany to Hollywood and then to recent European co-productions. Bildhauer provides incisive new interpretations of classics like Murnau’s Faust and Eisenstein’s Alexander Nevsky, and she rediscovers some forgotten works like Douglas Sirk’s Sign of the Pagan and Asta Nielsen’s Hamlet. As Bildhauer explains, both art house films like The Seventh Seal and The Passion of Joan of Arc and popular films like Beowulf or The Da Vinci Code cleverly use the Middle Ages to challenge modern ideas of historical progress, to find alternatives to a print-dominated culture, and even to question what makes us human. Filming the Middle Ages pays special attention to medieval animated and detective films and provactively demonstrates that the invention of cinema itself is considered a return to the Middle Ages by many film theorists and film makers.
Filming the Middle Ages is ideal reading for medievalists with a stake in the contemporary and film scholars with an interest in the distant past.
The motivating force behind Final Light was to document Snow’s “visual language”—forged early in his career from abstract expressionist influences typified by Willem de Kooning, Joan Mitchell, Robert Motherwell, and Franz Kline, among others. Final Light represents the first book to examine the legacy of this significant Utah educator and painter. Renowned scholars, writers, and activists who are familiar with Snow’s work—many of whom were his close friends—recount personal experiences with the artist and delve into his motives, methods, and reputation. The volume not only offers their commentaries, but also contains more than 80 exquisite full-color reproductions of Snow’s paintings, dating from the 1950s until 2009, when he died in an auto accident at the age of eighty-two.
A nationally recognized artist, Snow chose to stay in Utah where, when not teaching at the University of Utah, he roamed the southern Utah desert gaining inspiration from the red rock formations, especially the Cockscomb outside his studio near Capitol Reef National Park. Snow said, “Every artist probably wonders if he or she made the right decision to dig in to a certain place.” He dug into the landscape in and around Southern Utah and never regretted it. Just as “Tennessee Williams’s South, William Faulkner’s Mississippi, [or] John Steinbeck’s West Coast, formed their work,” the desert lands of the Colorado Plateau formed Snow’s. Their sense of place, “without provincialism,” said Snow “is what gives their art its enduring power.” Final Light will appeal to art historians and art lovers, especially those interested in abstract expressionism and the art of Utah, the West, and the Southwest.
Chosen by 15 Bytes, Utah's art magazine, as the most exceptional art book for 2014.
Winner of the 2015 Anne Friedberg Innovative Scholarship Award from the Society for Cinema and Media Studies Finding Augusta breaks new ground, revising how media studies interpret the relationship between our bodies and technology. This is a challenging exploration of how, for both good and ill, the sudden ubiquity of mobile devices, GPS systems, haptic technologies, and other forms of media alter individuals’ experience of their bodies and shape the social collective. The author succeeds in problematizing the most salient fact of contemporary mobile media technologies, namely, that they have become, like highways and plumbing, an infrastructure that regulates habit. Audacious in its originality, Finding Augusta will be of great interest to art and media scholars alike.
“[A] spirited and deeply researched project…. [Benkemoun’s] affection for her subject is infectious. This book gives a satisfying treatment to a woman who has been conﬁned for decades to a Cubist’s limited interpretation.” — Joumana Khatib, The New York Times
Merging biography, memoir, and cultural history, this compelling book, a bestseller in France, traces the life of Dora Maar through a serendipitous encounter with the artist’s address book.
In search of a replacement for his lost Hermès agenda, Brigitte Benkemoun’s husband buys a vintage diary on eBay. When it arrives, she opens it and finds inside private notes dating back to 1951—twenty pages of phone numbers and addresses for Balthus, Brassaï, André Breton, Jean Cocteau, Paul Éluard, Leonor Fini, Jacqueline Lamba, and other artistic luminaries of the European avant-garde.
After realizing that the address book belonged to Dora Maar—Picasso’s famous “Weeping Woman” and a brilliant artist in her own right—Benkemoun embarks on a two-year voyage of discovery to learn more about this provocative, passionate, and enigmatic woman, and the role that each of these figures played in her life.
Longlisted for the prestigious literary award Prix Renaudot, Finding Dora Maar is a fascinating and breathtaking portrait of the artist.
This work received support from the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Cultural Services of the French Embassy in the United States through their publishing assistance program.
In Finding Voice, Kim Berman demonstrates how she was able to use visual arts training in disenfranchised communities as a tool for political and social transformation in South Africa. Using her own fieldwork as a case study, Berman shows how hands-on work in the arts with learners of all ages and backgrounds can contribute to economic stability by developing new skills, as well as enhancing public health and gender justice within communities. Berman’s work, and the community artwork her book documents, present the visual arts as a crucial channel for citizens to find their individual voices and to become agents for change in the arenas of human rights and democracy.
The Fine Arts in America
Joshua C. Taylor University of Chicago Press, 1979 Library of Congress N6505.T373 | Dewey Decimal 709.73
"Though comparatively short, it is no once-over-lightly chronicle full of insignificant names and dates. It brilliantly achieves its principal aim: to provide readers with a compact but broad and well rounded conception of the progress of the fine arts in America from ca. 1670 to the present day. . . . It is a fascinating book, full of new vistas; it has all the earmarks of an instant classic."—American Artist
"[Taylor] describes changing definitions of art as much as he describes art itself, and he shows how the shifting forms of patronage affected the forms of art. He analyzes artists' associations . . . and he shows how museums and schools have expanded the audience for art. In short, he places artists and their work in cultural context. This treatment of the social history of art is the most original and intriguing aspect of Taylor's sketch."—Journal of American History
"This is a brilliantly subtle book. It builds with one insight after another, and suddenly the reader finds that a whole new way of looking at American art is being proposed. . . . After decades of thinking and looking and teaching, Dr. Taylor has written it all down. This work will become a classic interpretation almost overnight."—Peter Marzio, director, Corcoran Gallery of Art
"Interest in American art is unlikely to abate. . . . Mr. Taylor's short book is an invaluable guide through this activity and to its traditions."—Neil Harris, Wall Street Journal
Pompeii is the most famous archaeological site in the world, visited by more than two million people each year. Yet it is also one of the most puzzling, with an intriguing and sometimes violent history, from the sixth century BCE to the present day.
Destroyed by Vesuvius in 79 CE, the ruins of Pompeii offer the best evidence we have of life in the Roman Empire. But the eruptions are only part of the story. In The Fires of Vesuvius, acclaimed historian Mary Beard makes sense of the remains. She explores what kind of town it was—more like Calcutta or the Costa del Sol?—and what it can tell us about “ordinary” life there. From sex to politics, food to religion, slavery to literacy, Beard offers us the big picture even as she takes us close enough to the past to smell the bad breath and see the intestinal tapeworms of the inhabitants of the lost city. She resurrects the Temple of Isis as a testament to ancient multiculturalism. At the Suburban Baths we go from communal bathing to hygiene to erotica.
Recently, Pompeii has been a focus of pleasure and loss: from Pink Floyd’s memorable rock concert to Primo Levi’s elegy on the victims. But Pompeii still does not give up its secrets quite as easily as it may seem. This book shows us how much more and less there is to Pompeii than a city frozen in time as it went about its business on 24 August 79.
A lively and accessible history of Modernism, The First Moderns is filled with portraits of genius, and intellectual breakthroughs, that richly evoke the fin-de-siècle atmosphere of Paris, Vienna, St. Louis, and St. Petersburg. William Everdell offers readers an invigorating look at the unfolding of an age.
"This exceptionally wide-ranging history is chock-a-block with anecdotes, factoids, odd juxtapositions, and useful insights. Most impressive. . . . For anyone interested in learning about late 19th- and early 20th- century imaginative thought, this engagingly written book is a good place to start."—Washington Post Book World
"The First Moderns brilliantly maps the beginning of a path at whose end loom as many diasporas as there are men."—Frederic Morton, The Los Angeles Times Book Review
"In this truly exciting study of the origins of modernist thought, poet and teacher Everdell roams freely across disciplinary lines. . . . A brilliant book that will prove useful to scholars and generalists for years to come; enthusiastically recommended."—Library Journal, starred review
"Everdell has performed a rare service for his readers. Dispelling much of the current nonsense about 'postmodernism,' this book belongs on the very short list of profound works of cultural analysis."—Booklist
"Innovative and impressive . . . [Everdell] has written a marvelous, erudite, and readable study."-Mark Bevir, Spectator
"A richly eclectic history of the dawn of a new era in painting, music, literature, mathematics, physics, genetics, neuroscience, psychiatry and philosophy."—Margaret Wertheim, New Scientist
"[Everdell] has himself recombined the parts of our era's intellectual history in new and startling ways, shedding light for which the reader of The First Moderns will be eternally grateful."—Hugh Kenner, The New York Times Book Review
"Everdell shows how the idea of "modernity" arose before the First World War by telling the stories of heroes such as T. S. Eliot, Max Planck, and Georges Serault with such a lively eye for detail, irony, and ambiance that you feel as if you're reliving those miraculous years."—Jon Spayde, Utne Reader
Samuel Quiccheberg’s Inscriptiones, first published in Latin in 1565, is an ambitious effort to demonstrate the pragmatic value of curiosity cabinets, or Wunderkammern, to princely collectors in sixteenth-century Europe and, by so doing, inspire them to develop their own such collections. Quiccheberg shows how the assembly and display of physical objects offered nobles a powerful means to expand visual knowledge, allowing them to incorporate empirical and artisanal expertise into the realm of the written word. But in mapping out the collectability of the material world, Quiccheberg did far more than create a taxonomy. Rather, he demonstrated how organizing objects made their knowledge more accessible; how objects, when juxtaposed or grouped, could tell a story; and how such strategies could enhance the value of any single object.
Quiccheberg’s descriptions of early modern collections provide both a point of origin for today’s museums and an implicit critique of their aims, asserting the fundamental research and scholarly value of collections: collections are to be used, not merely viewed. The First Treatise on Museums makes Quiccheberg’s now rare publication available in an English translation. Complementing the translation are a critical introduction by Mark A. Meadow and a preface by Bruce Robertson.
This book examines the art and ritual of flagellant confraternities in Italy from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries. Meeting regularly to beat themselves with whips, members of these confraternities concentrated on the suffering of Christ in the most extreme and committed way, and the images around them provided visual prompts of the Passion and the model suffering body. This study presents new findings related to a variety of artworks including altarpieces, banners, wall paintings, illuminated manuscripts, and paintings for the condemned, many from outside the Florence-Rome-Venice triangle.
In this interdisciplinary volume, a team of classicists, historians, and archaeologists examines how the memory of the infamous emperor Nero was negotiated in different contexts and by different people during the ensuing Flavian age of imperial Rome. The contributions show different Flavian responses to Nero’s complicated legacy: while some aspects of his memory were reinforced, others were erased. Emphasizing the constant and diverse nature of this negotiation, this book proposes a nuanced interpretation of both the Flavian age itself and its relation to Nero’s Rome. By combining the study of these strategies with architectural approaches, archaeology, and memory studies, this volume offers a multifaceted picture of Roman civilization at a crucial turning point, and as such will have something to offer anyone interested in classics, (ancient) history, and archaeology.
This illustrated volume examines the different methods artists and anatomists used to reveal the inner workings of the human body and evoke wonder in its form.
For centuries, anatomy was a fundamental component of artistic training, as artists such as Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo sought to skillfully portray the human form. In Europe, illustrations that captured the complex structure of the body—spectacularly realized by anatomists, artists, and printmakers in early atlases such as Andreas Vesalius’s De humani corporis fabrica libri septem of 1543—found an audience with both medical practitioners and artists.
Flesh and Bones examines the inventive ways anatomy has been presented from the sixteenth through the twenty-first century, including an animated corpse displaying its own body for study, anatomized antique sculpture, spectacular life-size prints, delicate paper flaps, and 3-D stereoscopic photographs. Drawn primarily from the vast holdings of the Getty Research Institute, the over 150 striking images, which range in media from woodcut to neon, reveal the uncanny beauty of the human body under the skin.
This volume is published to accompany an exhibition on view at the Getty Research Institute at the Getty Center from February 22 to July 10, 2022.
Whether paying tribute to silent films in Hugo and The Artist or celebrating arcade games in Tron: Legacy and Wreck-It-Ralph, Hollywood suddenly seems to be experiencing a wave of intense nostalgia for outmoded technologies. To what extent is that a sincere lament for modes of artistic production that have nearly vanished in an all-digital era? And to what extent is it simply a cynical marketing ploy, built on the notion that nostalgia has always been one of Hollywood’s top-selling products?
In Flickers of Film, Jason Sperb offers nuanced and unexpected answers to these questions, examining the benefits of certain types of film nostalgia, while also critiquing how Hollywood’s nostalgic representations of old technologies obscure important aspects of their histories. He interprets this affection for the prehistory and infancy of digital technologies in relation to an industry-wide anxiety about how the digital has grown to dominate Hollywood, pushing it into an uncertain creative and economic future. Yet he also suggests that Hollywood’s nostalgia for old technologies ignores the professionals who once employed them, as well as the labor opportunities that have been lost through the computerization and outsourcing of film industry jobs.
Though it deals with nostalgia, Flickers of Film is strikingly cutting-edge, one of the first studies to critically examine Pixar’s role in the film industry, cinematic representations of videogames, and the economic effects of participatory culture. As he takes in everything from Terminator: Salvation to The Lego Movie, Sperb helps us see what’s distinct about this recent wave of self-aware nostalgic films—how Hollywood nostalgia today isn’t what it used to be.
On November 4, 1966, the Arno River in Florence, Italy, flooded its banks, breaching the basements and first floors of museums, libraries, and private residences and burying centuries of books, manuscripts, and works of art in muck and muddy water. Flood in Florence, 1966documents a symposium held to mark the 50th anniversary of a natural disaster that served as an impetus for the modern library and museum conservation professions. The proceedings feature illustrated, first-person remembrances of the flood; papers on book conservation, the conservation of works of art, disaster preparedness and response, and the continuing needs for education and training; and a keynote that points toward a future where original artifacts and digital technologies intersect. Providing new insights on a touchstone event by three generations of preservation and conservation professionals, the proceedings deepen our understanding of major advances in conservation practice and shed light on some of the most important lessons from those advances for future generations and the digital age.
The use of perspective in Renaissance painting caused a revolution in the history of seeing, allowing artists to depict the world from a spectator's point of view. But the theory of perspective that changed the course of Western art originated elsewhere-it was formulated in Baghdad by the eleventh-century mathematician Ibn al Haithan, known in the West as Alhazen. Using the metaphor of the mutual gaze, or exchanged glances, Hans Belting-preeminent historian and theorist of medieval, Renaissance, and contemporary art-narrates the historical encounter between science and art, between Arab Baghdad and Renaissance Florence, that has had a lasting effect on the culture of the West.
In this lavishly illustrated study, Belting deals with the double history of perspective, as a visual theory based on geometrical abstraction (in the Middle East) and as pictorial theory (in Europe). How could geometrical abstraction be reconceived as a theory for making pictures? During the Middle Ages, Arab mathematics, free from religious discourse, gave rise to a theory of perspective that, later in the West, was transformed into art when European painters adopted the human gaze as their focal point. In the Islamic world, where theology and the visual arts remained closely intertwined, the science of perspective did not become the cornerstone of Islamic art. Florence and Baghdad addresses a provocative question that reaches beyond the realm of aesthetics and mathematics: What happens when Muslims and Christians look upon each other and find their way of viewing the world transformed as a result?
Honorable Mention, 2021 LASA Mexico Humanities Book Prize, Latin American Studies Association, Mexico Section
In the sixteenth century, the Franciscan friar Bernardino de Sahagún and a team of indigenous grammarians, scribes, and painters completed decades of work on an extraordinary encyclopedic project titled General History of the Things of New Spain, known as the Florentine Codex (1575–1577). Now housed in the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana in Florence and bound in three lavishly illustrated volumes, the codex is a remarkable product of cultural exchange in the early Americas.
In this edited volume, experts from multiple disciplines analyze the manuscript’s bilingual texts and more than 2,000 painted images and offer fascinating, new insights on its twelve books. The contributors examine the “three texts” of the codex—the original Nahuatl, its translation into Spanish, and its painted images. Together, these constitute complementary, as well as conflicting, voices of an extended dialogue that occurred in and around Mexico City. The volume chapters address a range of subjects, from Nahua sacred beliefs, moral discourse, and natural history to the Florentine artists’ models and the manuscript’s reception in Europe. The Florentine Codex ultimately yields new perspectives on the Nahua world several decades after the fall of the Aztec empire.
Fluxus—from the Latin, meaning “to flow”—was a radical, international network of artists, composers, and designers in the 1960s and 1970s noted for blurring the boundaries between what we term “art” and what makes up everyday life. Following the work of American Fluxus founder George Maciunus, Fluxus and the Essential Questions of Life presents a variety of objects that express the Fluxus mission, while empowering readers to challenge the presumptions we bring to the concept and practice of art making.
Based on a large-scale traveling exhibition first organized at Dartmouth College’s Hood Museum of Art, this book chronicles the movement in the form of an art self-help book, playfully providing answers to fourteen key questions such as “Art—what is it good for?” and “What am I?” via Fluxus works. Featuring over eighty color and black-and-white illustrations, accompanied by essays from curator Jacquelynn Baas, Fluxus scholars Hannah Higgins and Jacob Proctor, and Fluxus artist Ken Friedman, this book will make an original contribution to our understanding of this provocative moment in modern art.
“PURGE the world of dead art, imitation, artificial art. . . . Promote living art, anti-art, promote NON ART REALITY to be grasped by all peoples,” writes artist George Maciunas in his Fluxus manifesto of 1963. Reacting against an elitist art world enthralled by modernist aesthetics, Fluxus encouraged playfulness, chance, irreverence, and viewer participation. The diverse collective—including George Brecht, Robert Filliou, Dick Higgins, Alison Knowles, George Maciunas, Yoko Ono, Nam June Paik, Benjamin Patterson, Takako Saito, Mieko Shiomi, Ben Vautier, and Robert Watts—embraced humble objects and everyday gestures as critical means of finding freedom and excitement beyond traditional forms of art-making.
While today the Fluxus collective is recognized for its radical neo-avant-garde works of performance, publishing, and relational art and its experimental, interdisciplinary approach, it was not taken seriously in its own time. With Fluxus Forms, Natilee Harren captures the magnetic energy of Fluxus activities and collaborations that emerged at the intersections of art, music, performance, and literature. The book offers insight into the nature of art in the 1960s as it traces the international development of the collective’s unique intermedia works—including event scores and Fluxbox multiples—that irreversibly expanded the boundaries of contemporary art.
Few creatures are as universally despised as flies. Blamed for pestilence and plagues, they were publicly excommunicated from the medieval church. Beelzebub, “the lord of the flies,” was said to be the embodiment of evil, and, for centuries, flies were considered the result of spontaneous generation—the unnatural consequence of rotting meat.
Fly explores the history of this much-maligned creature and then turns to examine its newfound redemption through science. The secrets of the fly’s versatile powers of flight, Steven Connor reveals, are only beginning to be understood and appreciated. Its eyes and wings, for instance, have evolved so perfectly that they provide inspiration for some of today’s most daring technological and scientific innovations. And the humble fruit fly, Connor demonstrates, stands at the center of revolutionary advances in genetic research.
Connor delights in tracking his lowly subject through myth, literature, poetry, painting, film, and biology. Humans live in close and intimate quarters with flies, but Fly is the first book to give these common creatures their due.
Flying Out of this World
Peter Greenaway University of Chicago Press, 1994 Library of Congress N8217.F6G7413 1994 | Dewey Decimal 704.94
Flights of fancy and fear, ecstatic highs, dreadful falls, and beckoning skies: these are the images British filmmaker Peter Greenaway collects and dissects in Flying out of This World, the second volume in a series developed by the Louvre and devoted to innovative writing on the visual arts.
As guest curator, Greenaway selected from the Louvre's collection of European prints and drawings ninety-one masterpieces that illustrate the human longing for flight. Greenaway's text, a compilation of brief commentaries that combine description, allusion, and interpretation, illuminate the images as depictions of flight desired and denied. Including works by Redon, Goya, Brueghel, Michelangelo, Mantegna, Rubens, Poussin, and Delacroix, this volume offers a combination of literary and visual art, of sight and insight.
A pursuit through the Bible, classical mythology, cosmology, theology, etymology, ornithology, and meteorology, Flying out of This World is not just an illustrated history of imagined flight, but a meditation on its meaning as a metaphor for the human condition, caught between a weighty body and a soaring spirit.
Winner, National Association for Chicana and Chicano Studies Book Award, 2019
The Royal Chicano Air Force produced major works of visual art, poetry, prose, music, and performance during the second half of the twentieth century and first decades of the twenty-first. Materializing in Sacramento, California, in 1969 and established between 1970 and 1972, the RCAF helped redefine the meaning of artistic production and artwork to include community engagement projects such as breakfast programs, community art classes, and political and labor activism. The collective’s work has contributed significantly both to Chicano/a civil rights activism and to Chicano/a art history, literature, and culture.
Blending RCAF members’ biographies and accounts of their artistic production with art historical, cultural, and literary scholarship, Flying under the Radar with the Royal Chicano Air Force is the first in-depth study of this vanguard Chicano/a arts collective and activist group. Ella Maria Diaz investigates how the RCAF questioned and countered conventions of Western art, from the canon taught in US institutions to Mexican national art history, while advancing a Chicano/a historical consciousness in the cultural borderlands. In particular, she demonstrates how women significantly contributed to the collective’s output, navigating and challenging the overarching patriarchal cultural norms of the Chicano Movement and their manifestations in the RCAF. Diaz also shows how the RCAF’s verbal and visual architecture—a literal and figurative construction of Chicano/a signs, symbols, and texts—established the groundwork for numerous theoretical interventions made by key scholars in the 1990s and the twenty-first century.
Suzi Parron, in cooperation with Donna Sue Groves, documented the massive public art project known as the barn quilt trail in her 2012 book Barn Quilts and the American Quilt Trail Movement. The first of these projects began in 2001, when Groves and community members created a series of twenty painted quilt squares in Adams County, Ohio. Since then, barn quilts have spread throughout forty-eight states and several Canadian provinces.
In Following the Barn Quilt Trail, Parron brings readers along as she, her new love, Glen, their dog Gracie, and their converted bus Ruby, leave the stationary life behind. Suzi and Glen follow the barn quilt trail through thirty states across thirteen thousand miles as Suzi collects the stories behind the brightly painted squares. With plentiful color photographs, this endearing hybrid of memoir and travelogue is for quilt lovers, Americana and folk art enthusiasts, or anyone up for a good story.
The Fonte Gaia from Renaissance to Modern Times examines the history of Siena's famous public fountain, from its fifteenth-century origins to its eventual replacement by a copy in the nineteenth century (and the modern fate of both). The book explores how both the Risorgimento and the Symbolist movements have shaped our perceptions of the Italian Renaissance, as the Quattrocento was filtered through the lens of contemporary art and politics.
Fonthill, Wiltshire, is typically associated with the writer and collector William Beckford, who built his Gothic fantasy house, Fonthill Abbey, there at the end of the eighteenth century. The collapse of the Abbey’s tower in 1825 transformed the name Fonthill into a symbol for overarching ambition and folly. But Fonthill is much more than the story of one man’s excesses, and the Abbey was only one of several important houses to be built there, all eventually consumed by fire or deliberately demolished—and all strangely forgotten by contemporary history
Fonthill Recovered draws on new research to explore the rich cultural history of this place where little remains today—a tower, a stable block, the ruins of what was once a kitchen, and an indentation in a field. The first half of the book traces the occupation of Fonthill from the Bronze Age to the twenty-first century. Some of the owners surpassed Beckford in terms of their wealth and political power—and even, in one case, their sexual proclivities. They include Charles I’s Chancellor of the Exchequer and the richest British commoner of the nineteenth century. The second half of the book consists of essays on specific topics, examining such crucial areas as the complex history of the designed landscape, the sources of the Beckfords’ wealth and their extensive art collection, and the recent appearance of the Abbey in a video game.
In a world where privatization and capitalism dominate the global economy, the essays in this book ask how to make socially responsive communication, design, and art that counters the role of the food industry as a machine of consumption. Food Democracy brings together contributions from leading international scholars and activists, critical case studies of emancipatory food practices, and reflections on possible models for responsive communication, design, and art. A section of visual communication works, creative writings, and accounts of participatory art for social and environmental change, which were curated by the Memefest Festival of Socially Responsive Communication and Art on the theme of “Food Democracy,” are also included here. The beautifully designed book also includes a unique and delicious compilation of socially engaged recipes by the academic and activist community. Aiming not just to advance scholarship, but to push ahead real change in the world, Food Democracy is essential reading for scholars and citizens alike.
From Giuseppe Arcimboldo’s painting of the Holy Roman Emperor Rudolf II as a heap of fruits and vegetables to artists depicting lavish banquets for wealthy patrons, food and art are remarkably intertwined. In this richly illustrated book, Gillian Riley provides fresh insight into how the relationship between humans and food has been portrayed in art from ancient times to the Renaissance.
Exploring a myriad of images including hunting scenes depicted in Egyptian Books of Hours and fruit in Roman wall paintings and mosaics, Riley argues that works of art present us with historical information about the preparation and preservation of food that written sources do not—for example, how meat, fish, cheese, and vegetables were dried, salted, and smoked, or how honey was used to conserve fruit. She also examines what these works reveal to us about how animals and plants were raised, cultivated, hunted, harvested, and traded throughout history. Looking at the many connections between food, myth, and religion, she surveys an array of artworks to answer questions such as whether the Golden Apples of the Hesperides were in fact apples or instead quinces or oranges. She also tries to understand whether our perception of fruit in Christian art is skewed by their symbolic meaning.
With 170 color images of fine art, illuminated manuscripts, mosaics, frescoes, stained glass, and funerary monuments, Food in Art is an aesthetically pleasing and highly readable book for art buffs and foodies alike.
From the hearty meals being devoured by peasants on a Bruegel canvas to the lush and lifelike fruits of a trompe l'oeil, food has enjoyed a central place in painting for centuries. These two great sensory pleasures come together in the sumptuously illustrated Food in Painting. Here Kenneth Bendiner journeys from the Renaissance to the present day—through the works of artists from Rembrandt to Manet to Warhol—to make the case that, though understudied, paintings of food are so important that they should be considered a separate classification of art, a genre unto themselves.
Bendiner outlines the history of these paintings, charting changes in both meaning and presentation since the early Renaissance. The sixteenth century saw great innovations in food subjects, but, as Bendiner reveals, it was Dutch food painting of the seventeenth century that created the visual vocabulary still operative today. Alongside paintings that feature food as the central subject, he also considers topics ranging from Renaissance menus to aphrodisiacs to bottled water to the portrayal of dogs at the table—always with an eye towards how the meaning of food imagery is determined by such factors as myth, religion, and social privilege. Bendiner also treats purely symbolic portrayals of food, both as marginal elements in allegorical paintings and as multi-layered sexual references in Surrealist works.
Packed full of images of markets, kitchens, pantries, picnics, and tables groaning under the weight of glorious feasts, Food in Painting serves up a delicious helping of luxuriously painted meals certain to win a spot on the shelves of art lovers and gastronomes alike.
Philosophers and theologians have long engaged in intense debate and introspection over the representation of the deity, its possibilities and its proscriptions. The Forbidden Image traces the dual strains of “iconophilia” and iconoclasm, the privileging and prohibition of religious images, over a span of two and a half millennia in the West.
Alain Besançon’s work begins with a comprehensive examination of the status of the image in Greek, Judaic, Islamic, and Christian thought. The author then addresses arguments regarding the moral authority of the image in European Christianity from the medieval through the early modern periods. Besançon completes The Forbidden Image with an examination of how iconophilia and iconoclasm have been debated in the modern period.
“Even the reader who has heard something of the Byzantine quarrels about images and their theological background will be surprised by a learned and convincing interpretation of the works of Mondrian, Kandinsky, and Malevich in terms of religiously inspired iconoclasm. . . . This is an immensely rich and powerful masterpiece.”—Leszek Kolakowski, Times Literary Supplement
The Julius Rosenwald Fund has been largely ignored in the literature of both art history and African American studies, despite its unique focus, intensity, and commitment. Spertus Museum in Chicago has organized an exhibition, guest curated by Daniel Schulman, that presents and explores the work of funded artists as well as the history of the Fund. Through it, and this accompanying collection of essays, illustrations, and color plates, we see the Fund’s groundbreaking initiative to address issues relating to the unequal treatment of blacks in American life. The book constitutes a veritable Who’s Who of African American artists and intellectuals of the first half of the twentieth century, as well as a roll call of modern contributors who represent the leading scholars in their fields, including Peter M. Ascoli, grandson and biographer of Julius Rosenwald, and Kinshasha Holman Conwill, deputy director of the National Museum of African American Art and Culture. With far-reaching influence even today, the Julius Rosenwald Fund stands alongside the Rockefeller and Carnegie funds as a major force in American cultural history.
The Forces of Form in German Modernism charts a modern history of form as emergent from force. Offering a provocative alternative to the imagery of crisis and estrangement that has preoccupied scholarship on modernism, Malika Maskarinec shows that German modernism conceives of human bodies and aesthetic objects as shaped by a contest of conflicting and reciprocally intensifying forces: the force of gravity and a self-determining will to form. Maskarinec thereby discloses, for the first time, German modernism's sustained preoccupation with classical mechanics and with how human bodies and artworks resist gravity.
Considering canonical artists such as Rodin and Klee, seminal authors such as Kafka and Döblin, and largely neglected thinkers in aesthetics and art history such as those associated with Empathy Aesthetics, Maskarinec unpacks the manifold anthropological and aesthetic concerns and historical lineage embedded in the idea of form as the precarious achievement of uprightness.
The Forces of Form in German Modernism makes a decisive contribution to our understanding of modernism and to contemporary discussions about form, empathy, materiality, and human embodiment.
Founded in 1904, Frankfurt’s Weltkulturen Museum houses a remarkable collection of ethnographic artifacts from Asia, Africa, Oceania, and the Americas, with the aims of advancing public education and fostering innovative anthropological research across a wide variety of contemporary artistic practices.
Developed through artistic research in the Weltkulturen Museum’s Weltkulturen Labor research lab, Foreign Exchange raises questions about the relationship between the museum’s educational and scientific aims and global trade. Together, essays by anthropologists, art historians, artists, and curators form an extended conversation around the historical accumulation and commodification of artifacts and, in particular, the representation of the human body in ethnographic photographs. Rounding out the volume are many previously unpublished photographs of works discussed. Contributing authors and artist include Peggy Buth, Minerva Cuevas, Gabriel Gbadamosi, David Lau, Tom McCarthy, David Weber-Krebs, and Luke Willis-Thompson.
An exploration of Kasimir Malevich’s radical 1915 artwork, its predecessors, and its continuing relevance.
When Kasimir’s Malevich’s Black Square was produced in 1915, no one had ever seen anything like it before. And yet it does have precedents. In fact, over the previous five hundred years, several painters, writers, philosophers, scientists, and censors—each working independently towards an absolute statement of their own—alighted on the form of the black square or rectangle, as if for the first time.
This book explores the resonances between Malevich’s Black Square and its precursors, showing how a so-called genealogical thread binds them together into an intriguing, and sometimes quirky, sequence of modulations. Andrew Spira’s book explores how each predecessor both foreshadows Malevich’s work and, paradoxically, throws light on it, revealing layers of meaning that are often overlooked but which are as relevant today as ever.
Throughout Africa one craft among many stands out: that of the blacksmith. In many African cultures, smiths occupy a significant position, not just as artisans engaging in a difficult craft but also as special people. Often they perform other crafts, as well, and make up a somewhat separate group inside society. The Forge and the Funeral describes the position of the smith in the culture of the Kapsiki/Higi of northern Cameroon and northeastern Nigeria. Situated in the Mandara Mountains and straddling the border of these two countries, Kapsiki culture forms a specific and highly relevant example of the phenomenon of the smith in Africa. As an endogamous group of about 5 percent of the population, Kapsiki smiths perform an impressive array of crafts and specializations, combining magico-religious functions with metalwork, in particular as funeral directors, as well as with music and healing. The Forge and the Funeral gives an intimate description and analysis of this group, based upon the author’s four decades–long involvement with the Kapsiki/Higi. Description and analysis are set within the more general scholarly debates about the dynamics of professional closure—including the notions of caste and guild—and also consider the deep history of iron and brass in Africa.
Today we often identify artifacts with the period when they were made. In more traditional cultures, however, such objects as pictures, effigies, and buildings were valued not as much for their chronological age as for their perceived links to the remote origins of religions, nations, monasteries, and families. As a result, Christopher Wood argues, premodern Germans tended not to distinguish between older buildings and their newer replacements, or between ancient icons and more recent forgeries.
But Wood shows that over the course of the fifteenth and early sixteenth centuries, emerging replication technologies—such as woodcut, copper engraving, and movable type—altered the relationship between artifacts and time. Mechanization highlighted the artifice, materials, and individual authorship necessary to create an object, calling into question the replica’s ability to represent a history that was not its own. Meanwhile, print catalyzed the new discipline of archaeological scholarship, which began to draw sharp distinctions between true and false claims about the past. Ultimately, as forged replicas lost their value as historical evidence, they found a new identity as the intentionally fictional image-making we have come to understand as art.
Form and the Art of Theatre
Paul Newell Campbell University of Wisconsin Press, 1984 Library of Congress PN1655.C29 1984 | Dewey Decimal 809.2
This book is an argument for a particular point of view toward theatre, not a summary or survey of dramatic theory and criticism. The argument centers on the concept of form, a concept that is the rock on which all theoretical and critical works are built, or against which they shatter.
Four Seasons of Flowers is an illustrated volume that presents a selection of the manuscripts, herbals, and printed botanical texts from the Rare Book Collection at Dumbarton Oaks. Representing pivotal works in the intellectual history of Europe from the sixteenth to the twentieth centuries, these drawings, books, and manuscripts are among the most significant materials conserved in the Rare Book Reading Room. They offer an illuminating overview of the history of botany as a modern science, from its inception to the present day. Each text is accompanied by a remarkable set of botanical illustrations. Their scientific accuracy and aesthetic beauty testify to the importance of the visual image once the efficacy of the printing press as an instrument for the furtherance of knowledge in the sciences and technology—from anatomy to zoology and from astronomy to botany—had been fully recognized. Botanical illustrations constitute an indispensable source of information for historians of not only botanical sciences but also garden and landscape architecture, thus shedding light on the study of plants in different periods, as well as on the evolution of the visual arts in areas where the representation of the plant world played a central role.
We know very little about the fox and its habits—and our ignorance, Martin Wallen argues, is rooted in the fox’s bad reputation. Lowly, sly, and classified as vermin, foxes raid henhouses and garbage bins, spread disease, and injure domestic pets. At the same time, foxes are often considered beautiful, mysterious, and even oddly human. This book is the first to fully explore the fox as the object of both derision and fascination, from the forests of North America to the deserts of Africa to the Arctic tundra.
Whether portrayed as an unrepentant thief, a shape-shifter, or an outlaw, the fox’s primary purpose in literature, Wallen demonstrates, is to disrupt human order. In Chinese folklore, for example, the fox becomes a cunning mistress, luring human men away from their wives. Wallen also discusses the numerous ways in which fox-related terms have entered the vernacular, from “foxy lady” to the process of “foxing,” or souring beer during fermentation. Thoughtful and illuminating, Fox shows that this lovely creature is as beguiling as it is controversial.
The traditional story of Renaissance painting is one of inexorable progress toward the exact representation of the real and visible. Georges Didi-Huberman disrupts this story with a new look—and a new way of looking—at the fifteenth-century painter Fra Angelico. In doing so, he alters our understanding of both early Renaissance art and the processes of art history.
A Florentine painter who took Dominican vows, Fra Angelico (1400-1455) approached his work as a largely theological project. For him, the problems of representing the unrepresentable, of portraying the divine and the spiritual, mitigated the more secular breakthroughs in imitative technique. Didi-Huberman explores Fra Angelico's solutions to these problems—his use of color to signal approaching visibility, of marble to recall Christ's tomb, of paint drippings to simulate (or stimulate) holy anointing. He shows how the painter employed emptiness, visual transformation, and displacement to give form to the mystery of faith.
In the work of Fra Angelico, an alternate strain of Renaissance painting emerges to challenge rather than reinforce verisimilitude. Didi-Huberman traces this disruptive impulse through theological writings and iconographic evidence and identifies a widespread tradition in Renaissance art that ranges from Giotto's break with Byzantine image-making well into the sixteenth century. He reveals how the techniques that served this ultimately religious impulse may have anticipated the more abstract characteristics of modern art, such as color fields, paint spatterings, and the absence of color.
What is the current state of the subject and what about the status of its self-image? In contemporary discourses we encounter more and more “fragile identities,” in artistic works as well as in scientific theories, and those are today much less referring to a critique of the concept of identity, but much rather to the relationship those concepts of identity entertain with the overall precarious state of the subject in current social conditions that are characterized by political upheaval and change.
The book Fragile Identities investigates among other things the chances and also the possible endangerments of such a fragile self and asks for the resurging urgency of a contemporary concept of subjectivity. The publication combines international artistic and scholarly contributions, discussions and project documentations in relation to the second annual theme of the cx centre for interdisciplinary studies at the Academy of Fine Arts Munich.
In A Fragile Inheritance Saloni Mathur investigates the work of two seminal figures from the global South: the New Delhi-based critic and curator Geeta Kapur and contemporary multimedia artist Vivan Sundaram. Examining their written and visual works over the past fifty years, Mathur illuminates how her protagonists’ political and aesthetic commitments intersect and foreground uncertainty, difficulty, conflict, and contradiction. This book presents new understandings of the culture and politics of decolonization and the role of non-Western aesthetic avant-gardes within the discourses of contemporary art. Through skillful interpretation of Sundaram's and Kapur’s practices, Mathur demonstrates how received notions of mainstream art history may be investigated and subjected to creative redefinition. Her scholarly methodology offers an impassioned model of critical aesthetics and advances a radical understanding of art and politics in our time.
In the aftermath of the French Revolution, Jean Honoré Fragonard, perhaps the most significant French painter of the eighteenth century, was condemned first as a purveyor of luxury items and later as an artist who abandoned noble subjects for the erotic genre. In this revisionist, art-historical study, Mary D. Sheriff challenges such pejorative views of Fragonard by arguing that he is better understood as an artist whose unsurpassed technical skill and witty manipulation of academic standards established a dynamic relation with the audience his art both courted and created.
Sheriff begins her inquiry with an appraisal of Fragonard criticism, followed by an extensive and thoroughly original reading of selected works by Fragonard and of the eroticism encoded in them. Art and eroticism converge in a discussion of execution, in which Sheriff explores the changing conception of execution and elucidates its complex rhetorical and cultural underpinnings. Drawing on analytic methods from contemporary critical theory and an understanding of each work's cultural milieu, Sheriff pays particular attention throughout to the relation between beholder and work of art, which she views as manifest in the artist's preoccupation with the play between the real and the fictive. Scholars and students of art history, eighteenth-century culture and history, critical theory, literary criticism, and all those drawn to the work of this great French painter will find this work essential reading.
If the postmodern is a collage—as some critics have suggested—or if collage is itself a kernel of the postmodern, what does this mean for our way of understanding the world? The Frame and the Mirror uses this question to probe the distinctive character of the postmodern situation and the philosophical problem of representation. Brockelman’s work is itself a collage of sorts, using juxtapositions of critics and art historical figures to conduct a debate between such figures as Karsten Harries, Gianni Vattimo, Rosalind Krauss, Immanuel Kant, Jean-Francois Lyotard, Slavo Žižek, and Le Corbusier about issues such as truth in art, perspectivism, theatricality, the sublime, psychoanalytic theory, politics, and urbanism.
More than an introduction to the postmodern, The Frame and the Mirror advances our understanding of the contemporary world by relating its features to the peculiar characteristics of collage. Ultimately, Brockelman shows how collage demands that we reinterpret modernity, conceiving of it as suspended between a loss of certainty and a new kind of knowledge about the human condition. In doing so, his work challenges many of the claims made in the name of postmodernism—and offers in their place a new and ironic view of the cultural space in which contemporary and historical events occur.
While earlier theorists held up “experience” as the defining character of installation art, few people have had the opportunity to walk through celebrated installation pieces from the past. Instead, installation art of the past is known through archival photographs that limit, define, and frame the experience of the viewer. Monica E. McTighe argues that the rise of photographic–based theories of perception and experience, coupled with the inherent closeness of installation art to the field of photography, had a profound impact on the very nature of installation art, leading to a flood of photography– and film–based installations. With its close readings of specific works, Framed Spaces will appeal to art historians and theorists across a broad spectrum of the visual arts.
The notion of the frame in art can refer not only to a material frame bordering an image, but also to a conceptual frame. Both meanings are essential to how the work is perceived. In Framing Russian Art, art historian Oleg Tarasov investigates the role of the frame in its literal function of demarcating a work of art and in its conceptual function affectingthe understanding of what is seen.
The first part of the book is dedicated to the framework of the Russian icon. Here, Tarasov explores the historical and cultural meanings of the icon’s,setting, and of the iconostasis. Tarasov’s study then moves through Russian and European art from ancient times to the twentieth century, including abstract art and Suprematism. Along the way, Tarasov pays special attention to the Russian baroque period and the famous nineteenth century Russian battle painter Vasily Vereshchagin. This enlightening account of the cultural phenomenon of the frame and its ever-changing functions will appeal to students and scholars of Russian art history.
Framing the Audience explores the cultural politics of the Great Depression and World War II through the prism of art appreciation. Isadora Helfgott interrogates the ideological and political motivations for breaking down barriers between fine art and popular culture. She charts the impact that changes in art appreciation had on the broader political, social, cultural, and artistic landscape.
Framing the Audience argues that efforts to expand the social basis of art became intertwined with—and helped shape—broader debates about national identity and the future of American political economy. Helfgott chronicles artists’ efforts toinfluence the conditions of artistic production and display. She highlights the influence of the Federal Art Project, the impact of the Museum of Modern Art as an institutional home for modernism in America and as an organizer of traveling exhibitions, and the efforts by LIFE and Fortune magazines to integrate art education into their visual record of modern life. In doing so, Helfgott makes critical observations about the changing relationship between art and the American public.
A cultivated patrician, a prolific playwright, and a passionate student of local antiquity, Francesco Ignazio Lazzari (1634–1717) was a mainstay of the artistic and intellectual life of Città di Castello, an Umbrian city that maintained a remarkable degree of cultural autonomy during the early modern period. He was also the first author to identify the correct location of the lost villa “in Tuscis” owned by the Roman writer and statesman Pliny the Younger and known through his celebrated description. Lazzari’s reconstruction of this ancient estate, in the form of a large-scale drawing and a textual commentary, adds a unique document to the history of Italian gardens while offering a fascinating perspective on the role of landscape in shaping his native region’s identity.
Published with an English translation for the first time since its creation, this manuscript is framed by the scholarly contributions of Anatole Tchikine and Pierre de la Ruffinière du Prey. At the core of their discussion is the interplay of two distinct ideas of antiquity—one embedded in the regional landscape and garden culture of Umbria and the other conveyed by the international tradition of Plinian architectural reconstructions—that provide the essential context for understanding Lazzari’s work.
Translated and with an Introduction by Daniel W. Smith
Afterword by Tom Conley
Gilles Deleuze had several paintings by Francis Bacon hanging in his Paris apartment, and the painter’s method and style as well as his motifs of seriality, difference, and repetition influenced Deleuze’s work. This first English translation shows us one of the most original and important French philosophers of the twentieth century in intimate confrontation with one of that century’s most original and important painters.
In considering Bacon, Deleuze offers implicit and explicit insights into the origins and development of his own philosophical and aesthetic ideas, ideas that represent a turning point in his intellectual trajectory. First published in French in 1981, Francis Bacon has come to be recognized as one of Deleuze’s most significant texts in aesthetics. Anticipating his work on cinema, the baroque, and literary criticism, the book can be read not only as a study of Bacon’s paintings but also as a crucial text within Deleuze’s broader philosophy of art.
In it, Deleuze creates a series of philosophical concepts, each of which relates to a particular aspect of Bacon’s paintings but at the same time finds a place in the “general logic of sensation.” Illuminating Bacon’s paintings, the nonrational logic of sensation, and the act of painting itself, this work—presented in lucid and nuanced translation—also points beyond painting toward connections with other arts such as music, cinema, and literature. Francis Bacon is an indispensable entry point into the conceptual proliferation of Deleuze’s philosophy as a whole.
Gilles Deleuze (1925–1995) was professor of philosophy at the University of Paris, Vincennes–St. Denis. He coauthored Anti-Oedipus and A Thousand Plateaus with Félix Guattari. These works, as well as Cinema 1, Cinema 2, The Fold, Proust and Signs, and others, are published in English by Minnesota.
Daniel W. Smith teaches in the Department of Philosophy at Purdue University.
Drawing extensively upon the poet's unpublished manuscripts—poems, journals, essays, and letters—as well as all his published works, Marjorie Perloff presents Frank O'Hara as one of the central poets of the postwar period and an important critic of the visual arts. Perloff traces the poet's development through his early years at Harvard and his interest in French Dadaism and Surrealism to his later poems that fuse literary influence with elements from Abstract Expressionist painting, atonal music, and contemporary film. This edition contains a new Introduction addressing O'Hara's homosexuality, his attitudes toward racism, and changes in poetic climate cover the past few decades.
"A groundbreaking study. [This book] is a genuine work of criticism. . . . Through Marjorie Perloff's book we see an O'Hara perhaps only his closer associates saw before: a poet fully aware of the traditions and techniques of his craft who, in a life tragically foreshortened, produced an adventurous if somewhat erratic body of American verse."—David Lenson, Chronicle of Higher Education
"Perloff is a reliable, well-informed, discreet, sensitive . . . guide. . . . She is impressive in the way she deals with O'Hara's relationship to painters and paintings, and she does give first-rate readings of four major poems."—Jonathan Cott, New York Times Book Review
Charles E. Robinson, Professor Emeritus of English at The University of Delaware, definitively transformed study of the novel Frankenstein with his foundational volume The Frankenstein Notebooks and, in nineteenth century studies more broadly, brought heightened attention to the nuances of writing and editing. Frankenstein and STEAM consolidates the generative legacy of his later work on the novel's broad relation to topics in science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics (STEAM). Seven chapters written by leading and emerging scholars pay homage to Robinson's later perspectives of the novel and a concluding postscript contains remembrances by his colleagues and students. This volume not only makes explicit the question of what it means to be human, a question Robinson invited students and colleagues to examine throughout his career, but it also illustrates the depth of the field and diversity of those who have been inspired by Robinson's work. Frankenstein and STEAM offers direction for continuing scholarship on the intersections of literature, science, and technology.
Published by the University of Delaware Press. Distributed worldwide by Rutgers University Press.
Franklin Furnace is a renowned New York–based artsorganization whose mission is to preserve, document, and present works of avant-garde art by emerging artists—particularly those whose works may be vulnerable due to institutional neglect or politically unpopular content. Over more than thirty years, Franklin Furnace has exhibited works by hundreds of avant-garde artists, some of whom—Laurie Anderson, Vito Acconci, Karen Finley, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Jenny Holzer, and the Blue Man Group, to name a few—are now established names in contemporary art.
Here, for the first time, is a comprehensive history of this remarkable organization from its conception to the present. Organized around the major art genres that emerged in the second half of the twentieth century, this book intersperses first-person narratives with readings by artists and scholars on issues critical to the organization's success as well as Franklin Furnace's many contributions to avant-garde art.
This book offers the most detailed investigation thus far of the materials and methods of this key American Abstract Expressionist artist.
Although Franz Kline was one of the seminal figures of the American Abstract Expressionist movement, he is less well known than contemporaries such as Jackson Pollock and Willem de Kooning. This is partly because Kline, unlike most artists in his circle, did not like to write or talk about his own art. In fact, when asked in a panel to discuss abstract art, Kline said, “I thought that was the reason for trying to do it, because you couldn’t [talk about it].” Still, his impact was such that the critic and art historian April Kingsley wrote, “Abstract Expressionism as a movement died with him.”
This volume, the newest addition to the Artist’s Materials series from the Getty Conservation Institute, looks closely at both Kline's life and work, from his early years in Pennsylvania to his later success in New York City. Kline's iconic paintings are poised on a critical cusp: some have already undergone conservation, but others remain unaltered and retain the artist’s color, gloss, and texture, and they are surprisingly vulnerable. The authors’ presentation of rigorous examination and scientific analysis of more than thirty of Kline’s paintings from the 1930s through the 1960s provides invaluable insight into his life, materials, and techniques. This study provides conservators with essential information that will shape future strategies for the care of Kline’s paintings, and offers readers a more thorough comprehension of this underappreciated artist who is so central to American Abstract Expressionism.