New Books in Art

New Books in Art

Interviews with Scholars of Art about their New Books Support our show by becoming a premium member! https://newbooksnetwork.supportingcast.fm/art

Episodes

September 30, 2022 63 min
Juliane Noth’s Transmedial Landscapes and Modern Chinese Paintings, coming very soon from the Harvard University Asia Center (2022), tracks a relatively short but transformative period in ink painting that coincides with the Nanjing Decade, 1927-1937. In the book, Noth considers how artists negotiated the continuing relevance and development of a form that came to be defined as guohua, or “national painting,” vis a vis the introduc...
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In Breathing Aesthetics (Duke University Press (2022), Jean-Thomas Tremblay argues that difficult breathing indexes the uneven distribution of risk in a contemporary era marked by the increasing contamination, weaponization, and monetization of air. Tremblay shows how biopolitical and necropolitical forces tied to the continuation of extractive capitalism, imperialism, and structural racism are embodied and experienced through resp...
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Greg Marchildon interviews Diana Nemiroff. As a former curator of contemporary and modern art at the National Gallery of Canada and former director of the Carleton University Art Gallery, and an adjunct professor of art history at both Carleton University and the University of Ottawa, she was well placed to write this definitive history of the transformation of the National Gallery of Canada from the 1960s to the 1990s. As result o...
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Since the global financial crash of 2008, artists have become increasingly engaged in a wide range of cultural activism targeted against capitalism, political authoritarianism, colonial legacies, gentrification, but also in opposition to their own exploitation. They have also absorbed and reflected forms of protest within their art practice itself. The Art of Activism and the Activism of Art (Lund Humphries, 2021) maps, critiques, ...
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Renowned choreographer Annie-B Parson's new book The Choreography of Everyday Life (Verso, 2022) is many things: a pandemic diary, a discourse of Greek tragedy, and a tribute to Parson's many inspirations, from Trisha Brown to Hilma af Klint. Mostly though, it's a leisurely walk through a brilliant mind. This book weaves together personal and theoretical reflections with evocative images from famous works of art and Par...
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How are art and social justice intertwined? In Creating Worlds Otherwise: Art, Collective Action, and (Post)Extractivism Paula Serafini, a Lecturer in Creative and Cultural Industries at Queen Mary University of London, explores the importance of art, artistic practice, and artistic movements to the struggle for social, environmental, and cultural justice in Latin America. Primarily focused on case studies from Argentina, although ...
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Decolonisation has lost its way. Originally a struggle to escape the West’s direct political and economic control, it has become a catch-all idea, often for performing ‘morality’ or ‘authenticity’. In Against Decolonization: Taking African Agency Seriously (Hurst, 2022), Olúfẹ́mi Táíwò fiercely rejects the indiscriminate application of ‘decolonisation’ to everything from literature, language and philosophy to sociology, psychology ...
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In Pilgrimage to the Museum: Man's Search for God through Art and Time (Sophia Institute Press, 2022), Stephen Auth takes you on a provocative and colorful journey through the history of Western art, interpreted through a lens of Christian spirituality -- appropriately so since, in Auth's view, much of Western art expresses humanity's search for God, the Divine Artist-Creator. Leaving all the art-history jargon behind, ...
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Alex Nathanson's book A History of Solar Power Art and Design (Routledge, 2021) examines the history of creative applications of photovoltaic (PV) solar power, including sound art, wearable technology, public art, industrial design, digital media, building integrated design, and many others. The growth in artists and designers incorporating solar power into their work reflects broader social, economic, and political events. As ...
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How we relate to orphaned space matters. Voids, marginalia, empty spaces—from abandoned gas stations to polluted waterways—are created and maintained by politics, and often go unquestioned. In Loving Orphaned Space: The Art and Science of Belonging to Earth (Temple UP, 2022), Mrill Ingram provides a call to action to claim and to cherish these neglected spaces and make them a source of inspiration through art and/or remuneration. I...
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By most accounts, the twentieth century was not kind to utopian thought. The violence of two world wars, Cold War anxieties, and a widespread sense of crisis after the 1973 global oil shock appeared to doom dreams of a better world. The eventual victory of capitalism and, seemingly, liberal democracy relieved some fears but exchanged them for complacency and cynicism. Not, however, in West Germany. In Sustainable Utopias: The Art a...
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In The City in Time: Contemporary Art and Urban Form in Vietnam and Cambodia (U Washington Press, 2021), Pamela N. Corey provides new ways of understanding contemporary artistic practices in a region that continues to linger in international perceptions as perpetually “postwar.” Focusing on art from the last two decades, Corey connects artistic developments with social transformations as reflected through the urban landscapes of Ho...
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Art After Liberalism (Columbia UP, 2022) is an account of creative practice at a moment of converging political and social rifts – a moment that could be described as a crisis of liberalism. The apparent failures of liberal thinking are a starting point for an inquiry into emergent ways of living, acting, and making art in the company of others. What happens when the framework of the nation-state, the figure of the enterprising ind...
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In 2008, the artist Renzo Martens released his controversial film Episode 3: Enjoy Poverty filmed in the Democratic Republic of Congo. The film portrayed the artist as a colonial explorer travelling around the Congo’s plantations with the naiveté of the cartoon character Tintin. Martens encounters poverty, hunger, and abuse, all the while narrating the way in which these experiences enrich him as a western observer. In a manner now...
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The Manifesto of Futurism was published in 1909, on the front page of Le Figaro, the oldest daily newspaper in France. Its author was Filippo Tomasso Marinetti, a 33-year-old Italian writer who was born in Alexandria, Egypt, in 1876 and was educated in Egypt and France. With his Manifesto of Futurism, Marinetti launched a new artistic movement that opposed what he called pastism, the worship of the past. Jeffrey Schnapp is a Carl A...
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September 1, 2022 74 min
Rachel Quist specializes in East Asian Buddhist imagery with focuses in pre-modern Japan and China. Her research centers on questions of interaction with imagery, materiality and object agency, and the accessibility of image-based practices. She has written on topics such as Buddhist reliquary design and expressivity, the didactic project underlying the hell tableau at Baodingshan, and the construction of a collective memory surrou...
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The discussion about objects, human remains and archives from former colonial territories is becoming increasingly heated. Over the centuries, a multitude of items – including a cannon of the King of Kandy, power-objects from DR Congo, Benin bronzes, Javanese temple statues, Mori heads and strategic documents – has ended up in museums and private collections in Belgium and the Netherlands by improper means. Since gaining independen...
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Faced with waning state support, declining revenue, and forced entrepreneurialism, museums have become a threatened public space. Simultaneously, they have assumed the role of institutional arbiter in issues of social justice and accountability. The canon of Institutional Critique has responded to the social embeddedness of art institutions by looking at the inner workings of such organisations and has found them wanting. In After ...
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In Beyond the Door of No Return: Confronting Hidden Colonial Histories through Contemporary Art (The Africa Institute and Skira, 2021), art historian and curator Selene Wendt presents lesser-known tales of anticolonial defiance in artworks and marginal histories worldwide. The artists featured in this book create compelling narratives that shed light on the entangled colonial histories that connect Europe, Africa, the Caribbean and...
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Offering a fresh perspective on the influence of the American southwest—and particularly West Texas—on the New York art world of the 1950s, Three Women Artists: Expanding Abstract Expressionism in the American West (Texas A&M UP, 2022) aims to establish the significance of itinerant teaching and western travel as a strategic choice for women artists associated with traditional centers of artistic authority and population in the...
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