Peggy Guggenheim: The Shock of the Modern - Museum Bookstore

Peggy Guggenheim: The Shock of the Modern

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'This succinct biography of one of the last century's greatest collectors is an elegantly written account of the difficult and controversial life of Peggy Guggenheim' - Art Newspaper

Peggy Guggenheim: The Shock of the Modern

One of twentieth-century America's most influential patrons of the arts, Peggy Guggenheim (1898-1979) brought to wide public attention the work of such modern masters as Jackson Pollock and Man Ray. In her time, there was no stronger advocate for the groundbreaking and the avant-garde. Her midtown gallery was the acknowledged centre of the postwar New York art scene, and her museum on the Grand Canal in Venice remains one of the world's great collections of modern art.

Yet as renowned as she was for the art and artists she so tirelessly championed, Guggenheim was equally famous for her unconventional personal life, and for her ironic, playful desire to shock. Acclaimed best-selling author, Francine Prose offers a singular reading of Guggenheim's life that will enthrall enthusiasts of twentieth-century art, as well as anyone interested in American and European culture and the interrelationships between them. The lively and insightful narrative follows Guggenheim through virtually every aspect of her extraordinary life, from her unique collecting habits and discoveries, to her celebrity friendships, failed marriages, and scandalous affairs, and Prose delivers a colourful portrait of a defiantly uncompromising woman who maintained a powerful upper hand in a male-dominated world. 

  • Author: Francine Prose
  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Date published: October 2015
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-0300224290 
  • Product Dimensions: 21.6 x 15.5 x 2 cm

'Prose situates Guggenheim right in the middle of the Modernist, as a new kind of woman who is hard to define, and in that she is a perfect product and reflection of her age, never less than fascinating. Without her, modern art would be much the poorer' - Independent on Sunday 

'By describing fairly the limits of her wealth, and the nous with which she spent it, Prose does justice to this great modern Maecenas' - Daily Telegraph 

'A whirlwind tour in a compact, peppy car through the tumultuous life of the most famous patron of modern art. . . . A restless, compulsive force, Guggenheim never stayed still long enough for anyone to snap a clear picture. You finish Prose's book in a rush, too, head swimming with the breadth of Guggenheim's cultural web and a sense of the reckless energy with which she wove it the source of her profoundest accomplishments and heartbreaks' - Artforum 

'This succinct biography of one of the last century s greatest collectors is an elegantly written account of the difficult and controversial life of Peggy Guggenheim' - Art Newspaper