America after the Fall: Painting in the 1930s
'America After the Fall is nothing less than a condensed museum of art, not to be missed by anyone with the slightest interest in painting' - The Observer
The decade from the Wall Street Crash of 1929 until the United States’ entry into World War II was perhaps the most diverse and dynamic artistic period for American artists in the whole of the twentieth century. Through 50 masterpieces of painting, this fascinating catalogue to an exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago, Musee de L'Orangerie and Royal Academy chronicles this turbulent time.
This decade was a supremely creative period in the United States, as the nation’s artists, novelists, and critics struggled through the Great Depression seeking to define modern American art. In the process, many painters challenged and reworked the meanings and forms of modernism, reaching no simple consensus. This period was also marked by an astounding diversity of work as artists sought styles—ranging from abstraction to Regionalism to Surrealism—that allowed them to engage with issues such as populism, labor, social protest, and to employ an urban and rural iconography including machines, factories, and farms.
Edward Hopper, Grant Wood, Thomas Hart Benton, Georgia O’Keeffe, Aaron Douglas, Charles Sheeler, Stuart Davis, and others show such attempts to capture the American character. These groundbreaking paintings, highlighting the relationship between art and national experience, demonstrate how creativity, experimentation, and revolutionary vision flourished during a time of great uncertainty.
Selected by Choice as an Outstanding Academic Title for 2016 Choice.
- Author: Judith A Barter, Curator of American Art, Art Institute of Chicago
- Hardcover: 224 pages
- Date published: July 2016
- Language: English
- ISBN: 978-0300214857
- Product Dimensions: 31.1 x 24.8 x 1.9 cm
★★★★★ 'Dance marathons, dustbowl farms, brawling sailors, impoverished cotton-pickers …a gripping show' - The Guardian
★★★★★ The Standard
★★★★★ 'America After the Fall is nothing less than a condensed museum of art, not to be missed by anyone with the slightest interest in painting' - The Observer
★★★★ ' A pungent mix of American Horror stories' - The Telegraph
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