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A radical re-evaluation of American modernism through four generations of artists and their work – now in paperback.
"That rarity of rarities, an opinionated but not eccentric scholarly history by a veteran museum curator whose every page crackles with original thinking and bears the stamp of a preternaturally sharp eye? Excellent reproductions and crisp typography complement the lucid prose." —Wall Street Journal
Twentieth-century art in America has long been understood in two very separate distinct halves: pre-World War II, often considered as inferior and provincial; and the triumphant, international post-war work that made a complete break with everything that went before. Agee discovers exciting new connections between artists and artworks, which strongly suggest that 1945 was not such a dividing line in art history after all. His fresh research offers an innovative approach and a brilliant take on art history.Specifications:
William C. Agee taught at Hunter College since 1988 until his retirement in 2014 and was awarded an endowed chair in 2004, the Evelyn Kranes Kossak Professor of Art History. Prior to Hunter, he held directorships at the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston and at the Pasadena Art Museum. Agee has published numerous articles and monographs in conjunction with exhibitions he has organized on artists such as Stuart Davis, Morgan Russell, Donald Judd and many others, as well as on aspects of modern art in America. His books include American Vanguards: Graham, Davis, Gorky, de Kooning, and Their Circle, 1927-1942 (2011) and Coming of Age: American Art, 1850s to 1950s (2006). Agee is based in Yonkers, NY.
"That rarity of rarities, an opinionated but not eccentric scholarly history by a veteran museum curator whose every page crackles with original thinking and bears the stamp of a preternaturally sharp eye." —The Wall Street Journal
"Illuminating... Modern Art in America is a magisterial book - rich, readable, and resplendent - that promises radically to realign our understanding of a visual age more native and deeply complex in its making than has hitherto been shown." —Art Quarterly
"The quirkiness of Modern Art in America is part of what makes it so valuable. It's not only a heroic effort, but also an intensely personal record of the meditation of one of our most acute and thoughtful observers on the art he cares most about, over a lifetime." —The New Criterion
"Perfect for modernist art geeks eager to question everything they think they know or, really, anyone interested in learning more about this fascinating period in art history." —BOOOOOOOM!
"In his taut survey Modern Art in America 1908-68... William C. Agee highlights the importance of early trends... Excellent reproductions and crisp typography complement the lucid prose." —The Wall Street Journal
"The rise of modern art in the USA is often hard to define. However, Agee, a specialist in the subject, has risen to the challenge... As interesting to read as it is enjoyable to look at and admire... Masterfully redefines our understanding of country's developments in modern art... The book is a vibrant hub of colour and information that deserves pride of place on any art lover's coffee table." —The Lady