The New Year brings plenty of art books to add to your reading list. Hopefully your holidays were filled with time to read and you are looking for some new titles. January’s Art on the Shelf list is compiled of new and soon to be released books on a wide range of mediums, artists and art movements.
Included in the month’s Art on the Shelf book list are: “LightScape: James Turrell at Houghton Hall,” “25 Women: Essays on Their Art,” “Anselm Kiefer: A Monograph,” “Walker Evans: Aperture Masters of Photography,” “Art Brut in America: The Incursion of Jean Dubuffet,” “E.A.T.: Experiments in Arts and Technology” and “Ernesto Neto.”
“LightScape: James Turrell at Houghton Hall”
From the mid 1960s onwards James Turrell’s principal concern has been the way we apprehend light and space. His first exhibition in 1967 of ‘projection pieces’ used high-intensity light projectors to give the illusion of a solid geometrical object. From these investigations of light, Turrell went on to begin his series of ‘Skyspaces’. Since then he has continued to create works using light as his medium. In summer/autumn 2015, Houghton Hall, Norfolk, hosted an exhibition of James Turrell's light pieces, many collected by the Marquess of Cholmondeley, owner of Houghton. He first discovered Turrell’s work twenty years ago, and in 2000 invited him to Houghton to install a ‘Skyspace.’ Soon afterwards, his atmospheric interior space, ‘St Elmo’s Breath’ was created in the park.
The exhibition was centered on works from the Houghton collection, which also includes projections, a ‘Tall Glass’, holograms and prints. The exhibition was complemented by further loans to help illustrate the broad spectrum of Turrell’s work; and a site-specific installation was created especially for Houghton – ‘The Illumination’– lighting the whole west façade of the house that could be viewed from dusk. The publication includes a foreword by David Cholmondeley, a text by Peter Murray, and an interview with the artist by Hiram C. Butler.
BASIC FACTS: “LightScape: James Turrell at Houghton Hall” is written by Peter Murray and Hiram C. Butler. Published by Houghton Hall. Release Date: January 14, 2016. Hardcover; 102 pages.
“25 Women: Essays on Their Art”
“25 Women” collects Dave Hickey’s best and most important writing about female artists from the past twenty years. But this is more than a compilation: Hickey has revised each essay, bringing them up to date and drawing out common themes. Written in Hickey’s trademark style—accessible, witty, and illuminating—“25 Women” analyzes the work of Joan Mitchell, Bridget Riley, Fiona Rae, Lynda Benglis, Karen Carson, and many others.
Hickey discusses their work as work, bringing politics and gender into the discussion only where it seems warranted by the art itself. The resulting book is not only a deep engagement with some of the most influential and innovative contemporary artists, but also a reflection on the life and role of the critic: the decisions, judgments, politics, and ethics that critics negotiate throughout their careers in the art world.
BASIC FACTS: “25 Women” Essays on Their Art” is written by Dave Hickey. Published by University of Chicago Press. Release Date: January 14, 2016. Hardcover; 192 pages; $29.00.
“Anselm Kiefer: A Monograph”
The work of Anselm Kiefer begins with a crucial question: how, after the Holocaust, can one be an artist within the German tradition? Born at the end of the Second World War, Kiefer’s career represents a quasi-existential quest to redefine Germanness. This new monograph will examine the foundation of Kiefer’s work: memory and our response to it. Kiefer’s artistic perspective is informed in turn by great literary works, myths, tales, legends, and particularly the world of Kabbalistic mysticism. This monograph explores his passion for alchemy, his admiration for great female figures obscured by history, and his relationship with the landscape and nature, a notable topic of his most recent works.
Art historian Dominique Baqué also highlights an aspect of Kiefer’s work that has received little critical attention: his conceptual understanding of the book and photography. In fact, Kiefer mixes many forms and media, and Baqué expands this study with a discussion of the often-overlooked performance element of his work, starting with his first actions from the end of the 1960s. Includes 250 illustrations.
BASIC FACTS: “Anselm Kiefer: A Monograph” is written by Dominique Baqué. Published by Thames & Hudson. Release Date: January 25, 2016. Hardcover; 300 pages; $70.00.
“Walker Evans: Aperture Masters of Photography”
The photography of Walker Evans (1903-75) is introduced in a new, redesigned and expanded edition of Aperture's classic book from its “Masters of Photography” series. Evans helped define documentary photography and is considered one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. He captured the American experience from the late 1920s to the early 1970s with graceful articulation.
From 1935 to 1937, Evans documented rural America during the Great Depression while working for the Farm Security Administration. Much of Evans' work from that period focused on three sharecropping families in southern Alabama, culminating in the revolutionary 1941 photo book “Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.” His enduring appreciation for inanimate, seemingly ordinary objects and the vernacular as subject matter is evident in his photographs of shop windows, rural churches, billboards and architecture. Photography historian David Campany contributes a new introduction and image commentary to this volume, which includes some of Evans' best known and loved photographs.
BASIC FACTS: “Walker Evans: Aperture of Masters of Photography” is written by Aperture and part of the Masters of Photography series. Published by Aperture. Release Date: January 26, 2016. Hardcover; 96 pages; $18.95.
“Art Brut in America: The Incursion of Jean Dubuffet”
“Art Brut in America: The Incursion of Jean Dubuffet” traces the influence of Art Brut in the US through works from Dubuffet’s art brut collection. The exhibition and its accompanying catalogue are organized around two seminal art-historical moments: the display of Dubuffet’s collection at the home of artist and collector Alfonso Ossorio in the 1950s, and Dubuffet’s provocative speech “Anticultural Positions” delivered at the Arts Club of Chicago in 1951.
Including both little-known and canonical works—such as drawings, annotated manuscripts, letters, paintings, embroideries and sculptures—created by 38 artists, including Aloïse Corbaz, Heinrich Anton Müller, Francis Palanc, Jeanne Tripier and Adolf Wölfli, as well as artworks by anonymous artists and children, this volume points to the influence of Art Brut on the burgeoning American style of Abstract Expressionism, as well as on individual artists and collectors. Included is a foreword by Anne-Imelda Radice, with text by Jean Dubuffet, Sarah Lombardi, Kent Minturn and Jill Shaw.
BASIC FACTS: “Art Brut in America: The Incursion of Jean Dubuffet” is written by Vale Rie Rousseau. Published by Museum of American Folk Art. Release Date: January 26, 2016. Paperback; 248 pages; $45.00.
“E.A.T.: Experiments in Arts and Technology”
Based in New York, Experiments in Art and Technology (E.A.T.) was a unique association of engineers and artists that included Robert Rauschenberg, Robert Whitman, Billy Klüver and Fred Waldhauer. The initiative was launched to realize works of art in unprecedented collaborative ventures, employ cutting-edge technology and to create artworks that would not have been possible without the expertise of scientists.
Among these works were Jean Tinguely’s Homage to New York (1960) and David Tudor’s Rainforest (1973), as well as the legendary 9 Evenings (1966) and ARTCASH (1971). This comprehensive overview offers a chronology of E.A.T.’s projects from 1960 to 1973, examining each project with a range of installation shots, archival photographs and ephemera. Essays by Simone Forti, Catherine Morris and others are included.
BASIC FACTS: “E.A.T.: Experiments in Arts and Technology” is written by Kathy Battista, Simone Forti, Billy Kluver and Zabet Patterson. Published by Walther Konig. Release Date: January 26, 2016. Paperback; 240 pages; $40.00.
“I am sculpture and think as sculpture,” said Brazilian artist Ernesto Neto (born 1964). Neto aims to create an equally absorbing, boundary-blurring experience for his audiences, soliciting interaction and multisensory engagement from viewers of his engrossing biomorphic sculptural environments; he seeks nothing less than to create and to tap into a universal language of the senses.
“Ernesto Neto,” published to accompany an exhibition at the Kunsthalle Krems, is conceived as a retrospective and an opportunity to offer new insights into Neto’s biosculptural cosmos of sensuousness, intimacy and interrelationships (both human and material). Particular attention is paid in this volume to the roots of Neto’s work in the art history and culture of Brazil, from the Neo-Concrete art of Lygia Clark and Hélio Oiticica to the Tropicália theater, poetry and music of the late 1960s.
BASIC FACTS: “Ernesto Neto” is written by Hans-peter Wipplinger and Verena Gamper. Published by Walther Konig. Release Date: January 26, 2016. Hardcover; 192 pages; $39.99.
Copyright 2015 Hamptons Art Hub LLC. All rights reserved.