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Alex Katz

Sandler, Irving

7 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0810912023 / ISBN 13: 9780810912021
Published by Harry N Abrams Inc, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A., 1979
Condition: Near Fine Hardcover
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Alcuin Books, ABAA
Scottsdale, AZ, U.S.A.

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About this Item

4to - over 9¾" - 12" tall. First comprehensibe study of the work of Alex Katz. Many color examples of his work, including foldout and hand-mounted plates. Bookseller Inventory # 030059

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Alex Katz

Publisher: Harry N Abrams Inc, Boston, Massachusetts, U.S.A.

Publication Date: 1979

Binding: Hard Cover

Book Condition: Near Fine

Dust Jacket Condition: Near Fine

Edition: First Edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

Contribution by Martin Maloney. Essays by Vittoria Coen, Lisa Liebmann.

Review:

As Irving Sandler, the venerable historian of postwar American art, points out in his brilliant essay for this book, Alex Katz's painting "has never been persuasively subsumed under any style. If anything, he is a one-man movement." There is the clear early influence of Matisse in Katz's full-length figures in simplified spaces or rooms, but after that Katz stands apart from other realist painters of our time. Katz cares about color deeply. He is clearly fascinated by design. But while he is often lumped in with such pretty painters as Jane Freilicher and Fairfield Porter, his work is much more ambitious. Although he is, like them, a painter of his immediate surroundings, including people, interiors, and landscapes, Katz never relies on intimacy for effect. His subjects are always part of something larger and more abstract--a sweeping environment of color and design that transcends the personal.

This book is a retrospective catalogue that will mesmerize Katz fans and perhaps persuade some of his ardent detractors to reexamine their aversion. Katz has always been reviled for exactly the things that make him popular and high-priced: his harmonious colors, his stylishness, and his accessibility. Here, Sandler thoughtfully constructs a sophisticated esthetic biography that accurately conveys Katz's independence, intelligence, and lack of sentimentality. He also manages to evoke the poetry of Katz's particular brand of beauty, with its nuances of light and air captured in doubt-free, arm-extending strokes. The only problem with this book is that the paintings' measurements are not included in the captions, so if you are not familiar with Katz's ceiling-scratcher sizes, you may find it hard to imagine their impact. --Peggy Moorman

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