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Charles Sheeler: Across Media by Charles Brock

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Publisher : University of California Press
Binding : Hardcover
Pages : 240
Publication Date : 2006
Condition : USED - VERY GOOD
Definition :
A clean book with unmarked pages, firm binding, no foxing, unsoiled, and that it is as close to new as possible but it is not brand new.
Charles Sheeler (1883-1965) is recognized as one of the founders of American modernism and one of the master photographers of the twentieth century. His work is synonymous with precisionism, a crisp, clean, hard-edged style that reconciled cubist abstraction and the machine aesthetic of Marcel Duchamp with American subject matter. Trained in industrial drawing, decorative painting, and applied art at the School of Industrial Art in Philadelphia, Sheeler also attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, where he learned an impressionistic, painterly style. He later embraced European modernism and taught himself photography. Sheeler fully absorbed the lessons of each discipline and forged his own singular approach. This beautifully illustrated book, created to accompany a traveling exhibition of Sheeler’s work, features detailed analyses of the artist’s mediums and working methods. Focusing on the complex, often paradoxical, relationships among photography, film, drawing, printmaking, and painting that were central to Sheeler’s art, this pathbreaking book traces critical points in Sheeler’s trajectory, beginning with a small selection of Sheeler’s seminal photographs, circa 1917, of the interior of an eighteenth-century Quaker fieldstone house in Doylestown, Pennsylvania. Sections are also devoted to the 1920 film Manhatta, made in collaboration with Paul Strand; a series of commercial photographs of the Ford Motor Company’s River Rogue factory (1927); the enigmatic painting The Artist Looks at Nature (1943) and its related works; and finally a group of mill subjects from the 1940s and 1950s that experiments with photomontage. Copub: National Gallery of Art From Publishers Weekly Starred Review. An important American artist, Charles Sheeler made significant contributions as a photographer, painter, draughtsman, industrial designer and filmmaker, all of which are covered with aplomb in this wonderful overview. Although less well-known than American art world superstars like Hopper, Rothko or Warhol, his approach and aesthetic were influential world-wide, especially on the Precisionist movement, and he numbered Alfred Stieglitz, Walter Arensberg and Maurius de Zayas among his supporters. Brock has done a superb job selecting images, including some dynamic examples of Sheeler's commercial work for Condé Nast and N.W. Ayers and Sons. There are plenty of color plates, and Brock divides them by type and period, presenting them immediately following the chapter that discusses them rather than collected in an appendix. This facilitates the study of the relevant images while reading and allows the reader to appreciate the relations between works visually, independently of the written analysis. Brock's essays are also consistently excellent, providing a good mix of critical debate over the intricacies of Sheeler's work with straightforward discussion of his long and varied career. The work is definitely lighter on academic analysis, however, and so will appeal immediately to general readers, but a concise bibliography at the end and judicious notes throughout make this a good starting point for readers wishing to delve into the subject in more detail. Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.