Author Posts

Artistic innovation meets activist politics in early 20th-century Mexico

Matthew Affron and Mark A. Castro– Paint the Revolution: Mexican Modernism, 1910-1950, an exhibition that focuses on an extraordinary moment in the history of modern art, opened in October at the Philadelphia Museum of Art (PMA). The show is the product of a partnership between the PMA and the Museo del

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Alexander McQueen: Deliverance

Robert Fairer— The Spring/Summer 2004 Deliverance show was, for me and for many others, a uniquely memorable Alexander McQueen accomplishment.  It expressed breathtaking contradictions: a combination of the classic and the modern; a coexistence of Lee’s singular, visionary genius with the organizing structure of a well-known Hollywood movie.  It was dazzling; it invented a

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Lowlands Travelogue: Utrecht

In Elisabeth de Bièvre’s book Dutch Art and Urban Culture, 1200-1700, the author explains how distinct geographical circumstances and histories shaped unique urban developments in different locations in the Netherlands and, in turn, fundamentally informed the art and visual culture of individual cities. In seven chapters, each devoted to a city, the book

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Widows and Orphans: Tony Seddon on Type Terms

Tony Seddon— I recently wrote a book titled Essential Type: An Illustrated Guide to Understanding and Using Fonts. When I started the book I assumed, as one does with any writing project, that there would be difficulties of various sorts along the way, but I didn’t figure on there being any

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Kentucky Renaissance: A Story told Through Photography

Brian Sholis– I first became aware of the creative life that flourished in mid-twentieth-century Lexington, Kentucky, around 2001. In quick succession I discovered Guy Davenport’s writing and Ralph Eugene Meatyard’s photographs. As I embarked on a career as a writer on art, Davenport’s essay collections became a touchstone. I was

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Vito Acconci and the Body as Medium

Elise Archias’s new book, The Concrete Body: Yvonne Rainer, Carolee Schneemann, Vito Acconci, examines the 1960s performance work of these three New York artists who adapted modernist approaches to form for the medium of the human body, finding parallels between the tactility of a drip of paint and a body’s

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Everywhen: The Eternal Present in Indigenous Art From Australia

Stephen Gilchrist— My great-grandmother Dolly Bidgemia was said to be 121 years old when she died. However, she never made the Guinness World Records, because at her birth, her name was never recorded in any book. She was born in Yamatji country in Australia’s northwest, where my mother’s family is from.

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Lowlands Travelogue: Leiden

In Elisabeth de Bièvre’s book Dutch Art and Urban Culture, 1200-1700, the author explains how distinct geographical circumstances and histories shaped unique urban developments in different locations in the Netherlands and, in turn, fundamentally informed the art and visual culture of individual cities.  In seven chapters, each devoted to a single city, the

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Seeing double

Taking its title from a 1961 work by Robert Rauschenberg—a telegram that stated, “This is a portrait of Iris Clert if I say so”—this groundbreaking book and exhibition, which opens today at the Bowdoin College Museum of Art, trace the history of portraiture as a site of radical artistic experimentation, as

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The technical brilliance and self-expression of William Merritt Chase

A century after his death, the breadth and richness of American painter William Merritt Chase’s career are celebrated in a beautifully illustrated book, William Merritt Chase: A Modern Master, by Elsa Smithgall, Erica E. Hirshler, Katherine M. Bourguignon, Giovanna Ginex, and John Davis, and with a foreword by D. Frederick Baker. The

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