Synopses & Reviews
The work of Barnett Newman (1905andndash;1970) has come to define the spiritual aspirations and material innovations of American painting in the mid-20th century. Best known for his zip paintingsandmdash;in which thin vertical lines rise through large, bold planes of colorandmdash;Newmanandrsquo;s work was an abrupt departure from his contemporariesandrsquo; gestural abstraction, yet anticipated Color Field painting.
During the last five years of his life, Newman worked primarily in acrylic rather than oil paint, used increasingly vibrant colors, and experimented with shaped canvases. When he died at the age of 65, he left a group of works hanging in his studio, some deemed unfinished. Centered on three of these works, this book builds upon ten years of exhaustive technical research to provide a rare glimpse of Newmanandrsquo;s relatively mysterious artistic process. The first scholarly publication devoted to the last years of Newmanandrsquo;s oeuvre, it featuresand#160;more than 20 paintings from this period and earlier. The authors present eye-opening analysis of these unfinished works as well as rich insight into Newmanandrsquo;s full body of work. This striking volume also includes photographic close-ups and scientific imaging that reveal previously unknown aspects of Newmanandrsquo;s mediums and techniques.
As the focal point of numerous high-profile exhibitions, the sculpture of Richard Serra (b. 1939) has drawn international acclaim. Yet even those who have marveled at Serra's intellectually rigorous and large works of sculpture may not be familiar with his equally intriguing drawings. This handsome book brings together for the first time Serra's drawn work, considering the artist's investigation of medium as an activity both independent from and linked to his pioneering sculptural practice.
First working in ink, charcoal, and lithographic crayon on paper, Serra originally used drawing as a means to explore form and perceptual relations between his sculpture and the viewer. Over time, his drawings underwent significant shifts in concept, materials, and scale and became fully realized and autonomous works of art. The grand, bold forms he created with black paintstick in his monumental Installation Drawings were designed to disrupt and complement existent spaces and eventually began to occupy entire rooms. In the late 1980s, Serra explored the tension of weight and gravity through layering, and his most recent work experiments with surface effects, using mesh screens as intermediaries between the gesture and the transfer of pigment to paper.
An enlightening study of Barnett Newmanandrsquo;s last works, based on a decade of exhaustive research
Based on ten years of technical research, this handsome book offers the first in-depth examination of Barnett Newmanandrsquo;s late works, providing rare insights into Newmanandrsquo;s materials and process.
About the Author
Lizzie Borden is a filmmaker and writer based in Los Angeles. Magdalena Dabrowski is a Special Consultant for Modern and Contemporary Art at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Gary Garrels is the Elise S. Haas Senior Curator of Painting and Sculpture at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art. Bernice Rose is the Chief Curator of the Menil Drawing Institute and Study Center. Richard Shiff is the Effie Marie Cain Regents Chair in Art and directs the Center for the Study of Modernism at the University of Texas at Austin. Michelle White is Associate Curator at the Menil Collection.