Carved in Stone: The Artistry of Early New England Gravestones

Carved in Stone: The Artistry of Early New England Gravestones

by Thomas E. Gilson
     
 

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Evocative photographs and essay illuminate early American gravestonesSee more details below

Overview

Evocative photographs and essay illuminate early American gravestones

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“These solid chunks of the past are strange and wonderful, irresistible and repellent, sign posts to our past as well as our future. There's never a crowd. Above ground that is. If a case can be made for visiting these lonely, eerie, open air exhibits, two brothers, Thomas and William Gilson, have made it in their new book.”—David Holahan, Hartford Courant

“Thomas Gilson’s photographs are beautiful, haunting, revelatory at times frightening.”—Alan Bisbort, Waterbury Republican-American

“Carved in Stone...is an eerie book, one that quietly works on you.” —Jan Gardener, Boston Globe

“The Gilson brothers—photographer Thomas and writer William—have captured the essence of these somber, touching memorials. … An excellent look at a fascinating subject and a fine introduction to the field.” —Paula Frosch, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Library Journal

Library Journal
In a culture that shunned image making as idolatry, the emergence of gravestone art in 17th-century Puritan communities marked a shift, one in which the spiritual world could be conveyed with dignity and grace as well as represent the deceased's deeply held religious faith. The Gilson brothers—photographer Thomas and writer William—have captured the essence of these somber, touching memorials. William writes of his bourgeoning interest in gravestones and the immediacy of his reactions to them as well the historical background of the markers themselves and of the little-known sculptors who carved their images. Thomas's excellent photographs are interspersed with writings from the period that give voice and personality to the small band of faithful who struggled and sometimes failed to survive. Cold, hunger, disease, and infant mortality are all recorded in the inscribed memorials under the carvings of angels, winged skulls, fanciful scrolls, and leaf forms carved into the hard stone of the land. VERDICT An excellent look at a fascinating subject and a fine introduction to the field. Readers drawn to this topic would do well to consider a much more extensive study, Graven Images, by Allan I. Ludwig.—Paula Frosch, Metropolitan Museum of Art Lib., New York

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780819573018
Publisher:
Wesleyan University Press
Publication date:
11/01/2012
Pages:
138
Sales rank:
872,611
Product dimensions:
10.40(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.70(d)

What People are saying about this

Bob Drinkwater
"Carved in Stone is a thoughtful and thought-provoking commentary on New England gravestone art of the pre-industrial era--a welcome addition to the New England gravestone studies literature."
Bob Drinkwater, past president of the Association for Gravestone Studies

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