Tag art history

A Personal Canon: Abigail McEwen on Five Influential Texts

Juan A. Martínez, Cuban Art and National Identity: The Vanguardia Painters, 1927-1950 (1994) In his classic account of Cuba’s historic vanguardia generation, Martínez developed a social history of modern Cuban art that remains a standard reference today. Published fifty years after the seminal exhibition, Modern Cuban Painters (Museum of Modern Art, 1944),

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Reflections on Africans in Gothic Sculpture, part 2

Images of Justice and Power Jacqueline E. Jung — In the choir of Magdeburg Cathedral, the black Saint Maurice, carved and painted around 1250, stands with his co-patron Catherine as complementary opposites; together they indicate the plenitude of this Christian ecclesia in both its Militant and Triumphant aspects. (Read more

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Reflections on Africans in Gothic Sculpture, part 1

Saint Maurice in Magdeburg  Jacqueline E. Jung — The stunning sandstone sculpture of Saint Maurice made for Magdeburg Cathedral around 1250 – representing the fabled fourth-century leader of the Roman army’s Theban Legion, who allowed himself and his men to be killed for their embrace of the new Christian faith

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A Personal Canon: Elise Archias on Five Influential Texts

The art history I write and teach is stuck in the mid-century modern period across much of the globe–roughly 1945-1970–because those years saw the end of a “modern” way of thinking and the start of a contemporary, or some would still say “postmodern,” outlook. I want to go back and

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A Personal Canon: Tim Barringer on Five Influential Texts

“British Art” lay at the margins of art history until the 1980s – the very phrase an oxymoron, a Yale colleague told me, since there is no British art to speak of. A certain introspection haunted even brilliant interpretative essays such as The Englishness of English Art (1956), given as

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Art in Nazi Germany

Michael H. Kater— One morning late in October 1938 the Viennese poet Josef Weinheber rose from among 250 of his compatriots assembled in the landmark Elephant hotel in Weimar. Fortified by two bottles of wine he stepped up to the lectern at the front of the hall and gave what

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A Personal Canon: Katie Hornstein on Five Influential Texts

My recent book, Picturing War in France, is ostensibly about war imagery produced during the first half of the nineteenth century in France.  It is also a book about questions of taste, quality, and the hallowed canon of art history.  The subject of war imagery allowed me to challenge my

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Why I Write

Nicholas Delbanco— I have in front of me a black, spring-loaded binder titled ART. A smaller version of the title has been pasted on the spine. The sturdy pebbled folder measures 11 ½ by 9 ½ inches, and the whole is an inch thick. Inside are fifty-two pages (one for

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Horace Pippin’s Self Portraits

Anne Monahan — Horace Pippin (1888-1946) painted two self-portraits in the 1940s on his way to becoming the decade’s most successful black artist. Both evince an indifference to illusionistic perspective in line with modern aesthetics, even as his self-taught pedigree appealed to those wary of avant garde styles and politics.

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A Personal Canon: Benjamin Anderson on Five Influential Texts

Art history may have or be an archive (even a canon!), but it is also a process of translation, remediation, and remaking. Here are five nodes in a network: Robert Wood’s Palmyra (1753): a transfer from architecture to print. In 1751, funded and accompanied by slave-owner and planter James “Jamaica”

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