Art and Its Publics: Museum Studies at the Millennium / Edition 1

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Art and its Publics explores the interface between the art object, its site of display, and the viewing public.

Engines of democracy at their inception during the French Revolution, public museums have since fostered the democratization of art. As museum-going has increased dramatically in recent years, the question of “whose museum?” and how museums construct and engage their publics has taken on added urgency. The essays in Art and its Publics present a cross-section of current issues, with contributions from both sides of the Atlantic and from museum professionals as well as academics. Essayists tackle issues confronting the museum community and seek to further the debate between theory and practice around the most pressing of contemporary concerns.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This book deserves a place on the museum-studies reading list and on the bookshelf of anyone seriously interested in the cultural place of museums today. Its lucid, observant essays take an informed look at a now ubiquitous institution, offering new points of view about the nature of the museum experience. Art and its Publics provides a welcome corrective to the presumption that art museums are monolithic institutions that narrowly control the perceptions and discussions of their visitors." Diana Strazdes, University of California, Davis

"Art and its Publics launches a much-needed exploration of art's audiences beginning with McClellan's ‘A Brief History of the Art Museum Public,’ an essay which is well worth the book's price alone." Jeffrey Abt, Wayne State University

"A stimulating and provocative review of the range of diverse exhibition strategies used by art museum curators as they endeavor to engage multiple audiences in different aspects of art." Eilean Hooper-Greenhill, University of Leicester

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780631230472
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 4/21/2003
  • Series: New Interventions in Art History Series , #24
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 236
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations
List of Contributors
Series Editor's Preface
1 A Brief History of the Art Museum Public 1
2 Having One's Tate and Eating It: Transformations of the Museum in a Hypermodern Era 51
3 Museums: Theory, Practice, and Illusion 77
4 Norman Rockwell at the Guggenheim 97
5 The Return to Curiosity: Shifting Paradigms in Contemporary Museum Display 117
6 Museum Sight 133
7 Sacred to Profane and Back Again 149
8 From Theory to Practice: Exhibiting African Art in the Twenty-First Century 165
9 Reframing Public Art: Audience Use, Interpretation, and Appreciation 185
Bibliography 201
Index 207
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