Jul 12, 2013

Things to Collect: Art Books

by charlotte miller

One of our favorite things to collect is art books. Instructional and inspirational, art books give a glimpse into the artwork and lives of the artists that inspire us and the exhibitions that take our breath away. Plus, a curated stack of books is a perfect home accent. Here are three of our favorites!

A Troublesome Subject: The Art of Robert Arneson

The first major monograph of Robert Arneson, A Troublesome Subject: The Art of Robert Arneson, examines Arneson’s life and oeuvre as Arneson transformed himself from a high school art teacher into an artist of international stature.  This monograph studies the relationship between Robert Arneson, the man and the artist, and his relationship to contemporary culture. Studying the full scope of Robert Arneson, Fineberg chronicles Arneson’s early roots in Benicia, CA, the formative years in the 1960's in which he developed his signature style imbued with humor and irreverence, and Arneson’s post-1970 turn to self-portraiture and other genres.

The Americans: Robert Frank

Published in France in 1958 and the United States in 1959, The Americans changed the medium of photography and is thought of as the most important photography book since World War II. The Americans is comprised of 83 photographs taken in 1955 and 1956 by Swiss-born photographer Robert Frank as he traveled around the United States capturing the iconography of America. The book goes beyond documentary photography and reveals feelings of anger, loneliness and alienation that existed beneath the surface of American culture through photographing diners, cars, gas stations and other images of American life.

State of Mind: New California Art circa 1970

State of Mind: New California Art circa 1970 is the first in-depth survey of Conceptual art and avant-garde art practices in Northern and Southern California in the 1970’s. The exhibition, which was on view February 29, June 17, 2013 at the Berkeley Art Museum, included over 150 works of art that demonstrated the critical role that California played in the development of the Conceptual art movement by artists such as John Baldessari, Chris Burden, Lynn Hershman, and Bruce Nauman, to name a few. State of Mind was co-organized by the University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive (BAM/PFA) and the Orange County Museum of Art (OCMA). The exhibition was co-curated by Constance M. Lewallen, adjunct curator at BAM/PFA, and Karen Moss, adjunct curator at OCMA. 

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