Synopses & Reviews
The scope and stature of Ruth Asawaand#8217;s work are brought into brilliant focus in this superb book, created to accompany the first complete retrospective of the artistand#8217;s career. Beginning with her earliest worksand#151;drawings and paintings created in the 1940s while studying at Black Mountain Collegeand#151;this beautifully illustrated volume traces Asawaand#8217;s trajectory as a pioneering modernist sculptor who is recognized nationally for her wire sculpture, public commissions, and activism in education and the arts. The Sculpture of Ruth Asawa
establishes the importance of Asawaand#8217;s work within the larger national context of artists who redefined art as a way of thinking and acting in the world rather than as merely a stylistic practice. A chronology and a collection of essays by noted scholars highlight Asawaand#8217;s complex relationship to American art and Asian American history and provide engrossing biographical information.
In her lifelong experimentations with wire, especially its capacity to balance open and closed forms, Asawa invented a powerful new vocabulary. Committed to enhancing the quality of daily life through art produced within the home, she contributed a unique perspective to the formal explorations of twentieth-century abstract sculpture. Working in a variety of non-traditional media, Asawa performed a series of uncanny metamorphoses, leading viewers into a deeper awareness of natural forms by revealing their structural properties. Through her artistic practice, Asawa reconnects with the Buddhist ethos of her parents, transforming the commonplace into metaphors for life processes themselves.
Essays by Daniell Cornell, Emily Doman, Mary Emma Harris, Karin Higa, Jacqueline Hoefer, John Kriedler, Susan Stauter, and Sally Woodbridge
Copub: Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco
This beautifully illustrated catalogue accompanies the first major museum retrospective of the painter Norman Lewis (1909and#150;1979). Lewis was the sole African American artist of his generation who became committed to issues of abstraction at the start of his career and continued to explore them over its entire trajectory. His art derived inspiration from music (jazz and classical) and nature (seasonal change, plant forms, the sea). Also central to his work were the dramatic confrontations of the civil rights movement, in which he was an active participant among the New York art scene. Bridging the Harlem Renaissance, Abstract Expressionism, and beyond, Lewis is a crucial figure in American abstraction whose reinsertion into the discourse further opens the field for recognition of the contributions of artists of color. Bringing much-needed attention to Lewisand#8217;s output and significance in the history of American art, Procession
is a milestone in Lewis scholarship and a vital resource for future study of the artist and abstraction in his period.
Published in association with Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia.
About the Author
Ruth Fine retired in 2012 after a long and distinguished career at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, highlights of which included the development and coordination of The Dorothy and Herbert Vogel Collection: Fifty Works for Fifty States and exhibitions of the art of Helen Frankenthaler, Jasper Johns, Roy Lichtenstein, John Marin, and Georgia Oand#8217;Keeffe, among others.and#160;In 2003 Fine organized the acclaimed exhibition The Art of Romare Bearden, which traveled from Washington to four additional venues. She is chair of the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation board.
Table of Contents
Foreword and Acknowledgments
John E. Buchanan, Jr.
1. Ruth Asawa: A Working Life
2. Black Mountain College
Mary Emma Harris
3. Ruth Asawa as an American Artist of Asian Heritage
4. Ruth Asawa and the Art of Installation
5. The Alvarado Art Workshop, 1968and#150;1973
6. Ruth Asawa: The CETA Years, 1975and#150;1980
7. Planting the Seed: The Artist as Mentor
8. Ruth Asawa: A Timeline