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Nothing If Not Critical: Selected Essays on Art and Artists [NOOK Book]

Overview

From Holbein to Hockney, from Norman Rockwell to Pablo Picasso, from sixteenth-century Rome to 1980s SoHo, Robert Hughes looks with love, loathing, warmth, wit and authority at a wide range of art and artists, good, bad, past and present.
   As art critic for Time magazine, internationally acclaimed for his study of modern art, The Shock of the New, he is perhaps America?s most widely read and admired writer on art.  In this...
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Nothing If Not Critical: Selected Essays on Art and Artists

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Overview

From Holbein to Hockney, from Norman Rockwell to Pablo Picasso, from sixteenth-century Rome to 1980s SoHo, Robert Hughes looks with love, loathing, warmth, wit and authority at a wide range of art and artists, good, bad, past and present.
   As art critic for Time magazine, internationally acclaimed for his study of modern art, The Shock of the New, he is perhaps America’s most widely read and admired writer on art.  In this book:  nearly a hundred of his finest essays on the subject.
   For the realism of Thomas Eakins to the Soviet satirists Komar and Melamid, from Watteau to Willem de Kooning to Susan Rothenberg, here is Hughes—astute, vivid and uninhibited—on dozens of famous and not-so-famous artists.  He observes that Caravaggio was “one of the hinges of art history; there was art before him and art after him, and they were not the same”; he remarks that Julian Schnabel’s “work is to painting what Stallone’s is to acting”; he calls John Constable’s Wivenhoe Park “almost the last word on Eden-as-Property”; he notes how “distorted traces of [Jackson] Pollock lie like genes in art-world careers that, one might have thought, had nothing to do with his.”  He knows how Norman Rockwell made a chicken stand still long enough to be painted, and what Degas said about success (some kinds are indistinguishable from panic).
   Phrasemaker par excellence, Hughes is at the same time an incisive and profound critic, not only of particular artists, but also of the social context in which art exists and is traded.  His fresh perceptions of such figures as Andy Warhol and the French writer Jean Baudrillard are matched in brilliance by his pungent discussions of the art market—its inflated prices and reputations, its damage to the public domain of culture.  There is a superb essay on Bernard Berenson, and another on the strange, tangled case of the Mark Rothko estate.  And as a finale, Hughes gives us “The SoHoiad,” the mock-epic satire that so amused and annoyed the art world in the mid-1980s.
   A meteor of a book that enlightens, startles, stimulates and entertains.

The most controversial art critic in America--author of the bestselling The Fatal Shore and The Shock of the New--looks with love and loathing, wit and authority, at art and artists from the past to the present. Hughes evokes and defines the essences, works and worlds of a wide range of artists.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Time 's art critic assesses four centuries of Western art. (Feb.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780307809599
  • Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 2/22/2012
  • Sold by: Random House
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 1,059,490
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

ROBERT HUGHES was born in Australia in 1938 and has lived in Europe and the United States since 1964.  Since 1970, he has been art critic for Time magazine.  He has twice won the College Art Association’s F.J. Mather Award for distinguished criticism.  His books include The Art of Australia (1966), Heaven and Hell in Western Art (1969), and a chronicle of the settlement of Australia, The Fatal Shore (1987).  His study of modern art, The Shock of the New (1981), is being reissued in an updated edition simultaneously with the publication of Nothing If Not Critical, Mr. Hughes lives in Manhattan and on Long Island. 
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Table of Contents

Introduction: The Decline of the City of Mahagonny
Part One: Ancestors
Hans Holbein Caravaggio France in the Golden Age Anthony Van Dyck George Stubbs Sir Joshua Reynolds Goya Zurbarán Nicolas Poussin Guido Reni Inigo Jones Jean-Siméon Chardin John Constable Antoine Watteau
Part Two: Nineteenth Century
German Romanticism Edgar Degas Courbet in Brooklyn John Singer Sargent Augustus Saint-Gaudens Winslow Homer James Whistler Pre-Raphaelites Camille Pissarro Thomas Eakins
Part Three: Into Modernism
Toulouse-Lautrec Auguste Rodin Van Gogh and Cloisonnism
Édouard Manet Henri Rousseau Vincent van Gogh, Part 1
Vincent van Gogh, Part 2
Paul Gaugain
Part Four: Europeans
René Magritte Vasily Kandinsky Giorgio de Chirico Julio Gonzalez Max Beckmann Henri Matisse in Nice Futurism English Art in the Twentieth Century Oskar Kokoschka Giorgio Morandi Late Picasso
Part Five: Americans
Thomas Hart Benton Deco and Fins Morris Louis Diego Rivera David Smith, Sculptures David Smith, Drawings Lee Krasner Milton Avery Jackson Pollock Arshile Gorky Joseph Cornell Edward Hopper Norman Rockwell Mark Rothko in Babylon Andy Warhol
Part Six: Contemporaries
Saul Steinberg James Turrell R. B. Kitaj Roy Lichenstein Nam June Paik Richard Diebenkorn Komar and Melamid Howard Hodgkin Louise Bourgeois Philip Pearlstein Robert Motherwell Sandro Chia Malcolm Morley Julian Schnabel Jean-Michel Basquiat: Requiem for a Featherweight Willem de Kooning Francis Bacon Francesco Clemente James Rosenquist Alex Katz Susan Rothenberg Anselm Kiefer Elizabeth Murray David Hockney Donald Sultan Leon Kossoff Eric Fischl Sean Scully Christopher Wilmarth Bernard Berenson Tom Wolfe: From Bauhaus to Our House
Brideshead Redecorated Jean Baudrillard: America
Art and Money The SoHoiad: or, The Masque of Art Index

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