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Historical Grammar Of The Visual Arts


Author : Alois Riegl
language : en
Publisher: Zone Books (NY)
Release Date : 2004


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A survey of the different visual arts within a sweeping conception of the history of culture by a highly influential figure in art history.

Real Spaces


Author : David Summers
language : en
Publisher: Phaidon Press
Release Date : 2003


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Addressing fundamental problems in modern Western approaches to art, this bold, brilliant and important book proposes a new and flexible conceptual frame-work for the analysis and understanding of all art by replacing the notion of the 'visual arts' with that of the 'spatial arts', which comprise two fundamental categories: 'real space' and 'virtual space'. Real space is the space we share with other people and things, and its fundamental arts are sculpture - the art of personal space - and architecture, the art of social space. Virtual space, representing real space in two dimensions, as in paintings, drawings and prints, always entails a format in real space, thus making real space the primary category.Using these distinctions and adopting a wide definition of art that in principle embraces anything that is made, the author examines some of the basic characteristics of all art in a survey that traces the development of human skill from the first hominid tools to the sophisticated universal three-dimensional grid of modern technology, which he describes as 'metaoptical' space. Successive chapters deal with facture, refinement and the discovery of abstract relations; the making of places, boundaries and alignments; the creation of centres and the relations between art, order and political power; the origins ofthree-dimensional, planar and virtual images; planarity and the development of measures, ratios and grids; virtual images, the development of perspective and the essentially centreless metaoptical world of Western modernism.This new conceptual framework enables us to treat all traditions on an equal footing and to understand opposition and conflict both within and between cultures. Formalism and other Western approaches to art are not rejected, but are recognised without universal validity being claimed for them. Throughout, the author insists that art can never be separated from the primary spatial conditions of its uses. His long-awaited study will stimulate people to think in new and fruitful ways about the human purposes of art, and also to think more deeply and critically about the relations between art, political order and technology.

The Semiotics Of Light And Shadows


Author : Piotr Sadowski
language : en
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Release Date : 2017-12-28


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Lighting and shadows are used within a range of art forms to create aesthetic effects. Piotr Sadowski's study of light and shadow in Weimar cinema and contemporaneous visual arts is underpinned by the evolutionary semiotic theories of indexicality and iconicity. These theories explain the unique communicative and emotive power of light and shadow when used in contemporary indexical media including the shadow theatre, silhouette portraits, camera obscura, photography and film. In particular, Sadowski highlights the aesthetic and emotional significance of shadows. The 'cast shadow', as an indexical sign, maintains a physical connection with its near-present referent, such as a hidden person, stimulating a viewer's imagination and provoking responses including anxiety or curiosity. The 'cinematic shadow' plays a stylistic role, by enhancing image texture, depth of field, and tonal contrast of cinematic moments. Such enhancements are especially important in monochromatic films, and Sadowski interweaves the book with accounts of seminal Weimar cinema moments. Sadowski's book is distinctive for combining historical materials and theoretical approaches to develop a deeper understanding of Weimar cinema and other contemporary art forms. The Semiotics of Light and Shadows is an ideal resource for both scholars and students working in linguistics, semiotics, film, media, and visual arts.

Art Subjects


Author : Howard Singerman
language : en
Publisher: Univ of California Press
Release Date : 1999


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"Few sites within the university open a richer critical reflection than that of the M.F.A., with its complex crossing of professionalism, theory, humanistic knowledge, and the absolute exposure of practice. Howard Singerman's Art Subjects does a magnificent job of both laying out our current crises, letting us see the shards of past practices embedded in them, and of demonstrating--rendering urgent and discussable--what it now means either to assume or award the name of the artist."--Stephen Melville, author of Seams, editor of Vision and Textuality "Art Subjects is a must read for anyone interested in both the education and status of the visual artist in America. With careful attention to detail and nuance, Singerman presents a compelling picture of the peculiarly institutional myth of the creative artist as an untaught and unteachable being singularly well adapted to earn a tenure position at a major research university. A fascinating study, thoroughly researched yet oddly, and movingly, personal."--Thomas Lawson, Dean, Art School, CalArts

The Gothic Screen


Author : Jacqueline E. Jung
language : en
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Release Date : 2012-12-28


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Reveals how Gothic choir screens, through their architecture and sculpture, were vital vehicles of communication and shapers of community within the Christian church.

The Origins Of Baroque Art In Rome


Author : Alois Riegl
language : en
Publisher: Getty Publications
Release Date : 2010


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Delivered three times between 1898 and 1902 and subsequently revised with an eye toward publication, Alois Riegl's lectures on the origins of Baroque art in Rome broke new ground in its field. In his approach and content, Riegl offered a markedly different account from that of Heinrich Wölfflin and other contemporaries: the beginning of the new artistic era extending from the 1520s to the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries was to be judged by its own rules and not merely as a period of decline. This first English translation brings Riegl's compelling vision of the Baroque to life and amply illustrates his charisma as a lecturer. His text is full of perceptive observations on the most important artists of the period from Michelangelo to Caravaggio. By taking the spectator into consideration, Riegl identifies a crucial defining change between Renaissance and Baroque art and provides invaluable inspiration for present-day readers.

Feeling Pleasures


Author : Joe Moshenska
language : en
Publisher: OUP Oxford
Release Date : 2014-10-30


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The sense of touch had a deeply uncertain status in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. It had long been seen as the most certain and reliable of the senses, and also as biologically necessary: each of the other senses could be relinquished, but to lose touch was to lose life itself. Alternatively, touch was seen as dangerously bodily, and too fully involved in sensual and sexual pleasures, to be of true worth. Feeling Pleasures argues that this tension came to the fore during the English Renaissance, and allowed some of the central debates of this period—surrounding the nature of human experience, of the material world, and of the relationship between the human and the divine—to proceed through discussions of touch. It also argues that the unstable status of touch was of particular import to the poetry of this period. By bringing touch to the fore in a period usually associated with the dominance of vision and optics, Joe Moshenska offers reconsiderations of major English poets, especially Edmund Spenser and John Milton, while exploring a range of spheres in which touch assumed new significance. These include theological debates surrounding relics and the Eucharist in the work of Erasmus, Thomas Cranmer and Lancelot Andrewes; the philosophical history of tickling; the touching of paintings and sculptures in a European context; faith healing and experimental science; and the early reception of Chinese medicine in England.