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A compelling panorama of art in America during the second half of this century.Shortly after the Second World War a group of American artists moved away from representation and realism toward a completely nonrepresentational style which became known as abstract expressionism. Led by Jackson Pollock, Willem DeKooning, and others, it was the first truly American painting style, and it quickly moved the United States into the forefront of innovation. A succession of other movements followed, including Pop Art, and adherents like Andy Warhol and Roy Lichtenstein; the performance art of John Cage and others; video art, led by Nam Juin Paik; and installation art of grand proportions.
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This lively compendium is the catalog for the second half of the Whitney Museum of American Art's nine-month, two-part exhibition on American culture of the last 100 years. The author, Lisa Phillips, is now director of the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York, but she spent 20 years at the Whitney overseeing many of its famous (or infamous) biennials and producing a number of exhibitions about American culture in fields beyond the museum. Like the first, this volume pulls together an array of cultural icons, defined inclusively. This being the Whitney's gig, the visual arts are appropriately dominant. The book's six sections cover every development from abstract expressionism through pop and minimalism to "Questioning the Canon," and "Market Power." Oddly, however, it is the insertions of short sidebars on Hollywood, theater, realism in the novel, modern dance, the nonfiction novel, feminist literature, hip-hop, and the like that give the book (and the exhibition) its special resonance. Pictures of Bob Dylan, Diana Ross and the Supremes, one of Robert Morris's disarrayed installations, and a bedroom at the Hog Farm community are spread across two facing pages, for example. The whole effect--a feel for the late '60s--is greater than the sum of its parts. And this happens throughout The American Century. Oddly, the art is less well evoked than the cultural iconography. The book's designer has sometimes enlarged a smallish painting or reduced an immense one, giving a distorted view both of the works in relation to one another and of their place in cultural history. With that quibble, however, this jam-packed tome records a notable exhibition as well as the long, strange trip the second half of the century has been. --Peggy MoormanAbout the Author:
Lisa Phillips was a curator at the Whitney Museum of American Art for fourteen years, and is currently director of the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York City.
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Book Description W. W. Norton & Company, 1999. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110393048152
Book Description W. W. Norton & Company. Hardcover. Condition: New. 0393048152 New Condition. Seller Inventory # NEW7.0129645
Book Description W. W. Norton & Company, 1999. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0393048152