Author: Sebastian Smee
Publisher: Random House
Release Date: 2016-08-16
Genre: Biography & Autobiography
Pulitzer Prize–winning art critic Sebastian Smee tells the fascinating story of four pairs of artists—Manet and Degas, Picasso and Matisse, Pollock and de Kooning, Freud and Bacon—whose fraught, competitive friendships spurred them to new creative heights. Rivalry is at the heart of some of the most famous and fruitful relationships in history. The Art of Rivalry follows eight celebrated artists, each linked to a counterpart by friendship, admiration, envy, and ambition. All eight are household names today. But to achieve what they did, each needed the influence of a contemporary—one who was equally ambitious but possessed sharply contrasting strengths and weaknesses. Edouard Manet and Edgar Degas were close associates whose personal bond frayed after Degas painted a portrait of Manet and his wife. Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso swapped paintings, ideas, and influences as they jostled for the support of collectors like Leo and Gertrude Stein and vied for the leadership of a new avant-garde. Jackson Pollock’s uninhibited style of “action painting” triggered a breakthrough in the work of his older rival, Willem de Kooning. After Pollock’s sudden death in a car crash, de Kooning assumed Pollock's mantle and became romantically involved with his late friend’s mistress. Lucian Freud and Francis Bacon met in the early 1950s, when Bacon was being hailed as Britain’s most exciting new painter and Freud was working in relative obscurity. Their intense but asymmetrical friendship came to a head when Freud painted a portrait of Bacon, which was later stolen. Each of these relationships culminated in an early flashpoint, a rupture in a budding intimacy that was both a betrayal and a trigger for great innovation. Writing with the same exuberant wit and psychological insight that earned him a Pulitzer Prize for art criticism, Sebastian Smee explores here the way that coming into one’s own as an artist—finding one’s voice—almost always involves willfully breaking away from some intimate’s expectations of who you are or ought to be. Praise for The Art of Rivalry “Gripping . . . Mr. Smee’s skills as a critic are evident throughout. He is persuasive and vivid. . . . You leave this book both nourished and hungry for more about the art, its creators and patrons, and the relationships that seed the ground for moments spent at the canvas.”—The New York Times “With novella-like detail and incisiveness [Sebastian Smee] opens up the worlds of four pairs of renowned artists. . . . Each of his portraits is a biographical gem. . . . The Art of Rivalry is a pure, informative delight, written with canny authority.”—The Boston Globe “Bacon liked to say his portraiture aimed to capture ‘the pulsations of a person.’ Revealing these rare creators as the invaluable catalysts they also were, Smee conveys exactly that on page after page. . . . His brilliant group biography is one of a kind.”—The Atlantic “Perceptive . . . Smee is onto something important. His book may bring us as close as we’ll ever get to understanding the connections between these bristly bonds and brilliance.”—The Christian Science Monitor “In this intriguing work of art history and psychology, The Boston Globe’s art critic looks at the competitive friendships of Matisse and Picasso, Manet and Degas, Pollock and de Kooning, and Freud and Bacon. All four relationships illuminate the creative process—both its imaginative breakthroughs and its frustrating blocks.”—Newsday From the Hardcover edition.
Author: James Cahill
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Release Date: 2018-05-11
The first major survey to reveal the ways in which Classical mythology has inspired art throughout the last 2,500 years From the films of Woody Allen and the Coen Brothers to Margaret Atwood's books and Arcade Fire's songs, Classical Greek and Roman myths continue to be a source of cultural inspiration. The struggles of heroes, both triumphant and tragic, with gods, monsters, and fate, exert a particular grip on our imagination. Visual artists have long expressed and reworked these foundational stories. This is the first book to unite myth-inspired artworks by ancient, modern, and contemporary artists, from Botticelli and Caravaggio to Jeff Koons and Damien Hirst.
Publisher: Guggenheim Museum Publications
Release Date: 2003
Essays by Jan Avgikos, Bridget Alsdorf, Daniel Abadie, Ivy Barsky, Jennifer Blessing, Marek Bartelik, Tracey Bashkoff, Susan Cross, Matthew Drutt, Cornelia Lauf, Ingrid Schaffner, Fiona J. Ragheb, Nancy Spector, Joan Young, et al.
Creative block presents the most crippling—and unfortunately universal—challenge for artists. No longer! This blockbuster of a book is chock-full of solutions for overcoming all manner of artistic impediment. The blogger behind The Jealous Curator interviews 50 successful international artists working in different mediums and mines their insights on how to conquer self-doubt, stay motivated, and get new ideas to flow. Each artist offers a tried-and-true exercise—from road trips to 30-day challenges to cataloging the medicine cabinet— that will kick-start the creative process. Abundantly visual with more than 300 images showcasing these artists' resulting work, Creative Block is a vital ally to students, artists, and creative professionals.
Author: Morgan Falconer
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Release Date: 2015-04-20
Painting Beyond Pollock is a captivating account of the history of European and American painting from the mid‐20th century onwards. Art historian and critic Morgan Falconer presents an extensively researched piece of writing that explains why painting has surged in popularity since Jackson Pollock and the Abstract Expressionists began painting in the late 1940s–early 1950s. Drawing on both original sources and contemporary scholarship, this bold and richly designed book lavishly illustrates the most important works made beginning in the Post War era. In addition to well‐known artists such as Willem de Kooning, Agnes Martin, Alex Katz, Ellsworth Kelly, Marlene Dumas, Gerhard Richter and Brice Marden, Falconer explores the work of contemporary stars such as Cecily Brown, Mark Grotjahn, Elizabeth Peyton, John Currin, Neo Rauch and Mark Bradford as well as up‐and‐coming artists such as Blink Palermo and Sigmar Polke. Topics include: Things must be pulverized – Abstract Expressionism Wounded Painting – Informel in Europe and Beyond Against Gesture – Geometric Abstraction Witnesses – Post‐war Figurative Painting Anti&hyephn;Tradition – Pop Painting Post&hypen;Painting Part I – After Pollock A transcendental, high art – Neo‐Expressionism and its Discontents Post‐Painting Part II – After Pop New Figuration – Pop Romantics
Author: B. H. Friedman
Publisher: Da Capo Press
Release Date: 1995-08-22
Nowhere is the complex and destructive painter Jackson Pollock (1912–1956) revealed with more compassion and insight than in this exemplary biography. Friedman, a friend of Pollock's and active in the art world, shows him to be a brilliant man tormented by his relationship to his family; an artist who worked hard through years of poverty to achieve his controversial painting technique; the first American painter to gain an international reputation for himself and for what has been variously called Action Painting or Abstract Expressionism; and a man who struggled with alcohol and the tension between gentleness and violence.Newly illustrated with seminal Pollock paintings, this book takes the reader inside the art world of New York during the '40s and '50s, when Action Painting first emerged. Friedman reveals what it meant to Pollock to experience the invasion of his studio and of the very act of painting by the external pressures of shows, reviews, films, dealers, critics, hostile publicity; and how, despite it all, Pollock created many of the most graceful and powerful paintings ever made in America.
Author: Michael Juul Holm
Release Date: 2014-11-01
In the years during and just after World War II, the Danish artist Asger Jorn (1914-73) and the American painter Jackson Pollock (1912-56) came to play major roles in the development of a new Abstract Expressionist art. Both drew on Surrealism and Picasso to explore automatism in painting, each breaking through to a unique style around 1943, when Pollock had his first show at Peggy Guggenheim's gallery, and Jorn established the groundwork for working collectively that would lead to the founding of the CoBrA group. In both cases, this led to an incredibly energetic, primitive-seeming painting (although Jorn retained more figurative elements than Pollock). Alongside more than 100 color reproductions, "Jorn & Pollock: Revolutionary Roads" includes the essays "Image Revolutions - Abstract Expressionism and What Looks Like It in Jorn and Pollock" by Anders Kold; "In the Shadow of Picasso: Asger Jorn and Jackson Pollock" by British art historian Jeremy Lewison; "Sounds in the Grass" by Axel Heil; and "Simpler Evolutions" by Courtney Martin, which discusses the British critic Lawrence Alloway's comparisons of the two artists.
Author: Donald Wigal
Publisher: Parkstone International
Release Date: 2012-05-08
Born in 1912, in a small town in Wyoming, Jackson Pollock embodied the American dream as the country found itself confronted with the realities of a modern era replacing the fading nineteenth century. Pollock left home in search of fame and fortune in New York City. Thanks to the Federal Art Project he quickly won acclaim, and after the Second World War became the biggest art celebrity in America. For De Kooning, Pollock was the “icebreaker”. For Max Ernst and Masson, Pollock was a fellow member of the European Surrealist movement. And for Motherwell, Pollock was a legitimate candidate for the status of the Master of the American School. During the many upheavals in his life in Nez York in the 1950s and 60s, Pollock lost his bearings - success had simply come too fast and too easily. It was during this period that he turned to alcohol and disintegrated his marriage to Lee Krasner. His life ended like that of 50s film icon James Dean behind the wheel of his Oldsmobile, after a night of drinking.