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Wayne Thiebaud: A Paintings Retrospective

Nash, Steven A.; Thiebaud, Wayne; Gopnik, Adam; Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco

ISBN 10: 0500092923 / ISBN 13: 9780500092927
Published by Thames & Hudson, 2000
New Condition: New Hardcover
From Penobscot Books (Searsport, ME, U.S.A.)

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NO FINER COPY EXISTS. // NEW BOOK and DJ, both in GIFT-quality MINT condition, and with new Mylar protection. // Tan clothbound hardcover, Quarto, 215 pages, richly illustrated with multi-calorie foods. // You want this copy of this book. Now. Size: Quatro. Bookseller Inventory # 101333

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Wayne Thiebaud: A Paintings Retrospective

Publisher: Thames & Hudson

Publication Date: 2000

Binding: Clothbound Hardcover

Book Condition:New

Dust Jacket Condition: New

About this title


Wayne Thiebaud, the California-based painter, has produced works of complexity and distinction that appear deceptively simple in terms of subject matter and in their presentation yet draw on many historical sources.

In fact, Thiebaud is part of the grand tradition of representational art from Chardin and Manet to the American Realist masters such as Eakins and Hopper. Best-known for his deadpan still-life paintings of cakes, pies, delicatessen counters, and other consumer goods, Thiebaud has also explored such themes as figure studies, the topography of Northern California, and cityscapes exaggerating the vertiginous roadways and geometric high-rises of San Francisco. Continuous throughout his career is his combination of the perceptual and the conceptual, of sensuous color, light, and painterly texture with rigorously formal composition, resulting in a highly personalized Americana. Wayne Thiebaud: A Paintings Retrospective is published on the occasion of an exhibition of the same title, the first major survey in fifteen years of work by this famous American figurative artist. Steven A. Nash, Associate Director and Chief Curator at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, has organized the exhibition and provides a biographical essay on Thiebaud. An extended essay by Adam Gopnik, the Paris Journal writer for The New Yorker, links Thiebaud to American writing as a painter in the tradition of Walt Whitman, William Carlos Williams, and John Updike.


Famous for his dreamy 1960s paintings of cakes, Wayne Thiebaud began his career as a commercial artist and cartoon illustrator like many other artists of the period, including Andy Warhol. And like Warhol, Thiebaud became tied to pop art since he was making images of popular American products like food, lipsticks, and toys. Yet unlike many of his pop peers, Bay Area-based Thiebaud wasn't interested in poking fun at the establishment. He's a painter's painter, a real traditionalist. Wayne Thiebaud: A Paintings Retrospective covers a career of rendering still lifes, cityscapes, landscapes, and the figure. His cake paintings are formally beautiful in their color, shadow, and composition. They are perfect specimens of the good life in America, the paint lovingly applied in places like thick frosting. His cityscapes of San Francisco fiercely exaggerate the hilly landscape, capturing a perspective from the ground and air simultaneously while utilizing the light that the Bay Area is famous for.

Thoughtful essays by Steven A. Nash, associate director and chief curator for the Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, and Adam Gopnik, a writer for The New Yorker, discuss Thiebaud in relation to his peers, pop, modernism, and abstract expressionism. This book serves as a catalog for Thiebaud's major retrospective, which opened in San Francisco and travels to Forth Worth, Texas, Washington, D.C., and ends in New York in the fall of 2001. Besides their beauty, these works truly capture a period of American life in a way that feels free of irony but not without commentary about nature, the city, and how we've lived. --J.P. Cohen

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