Paris Post War: Art and Existentialism, 1945-55

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
In postwar Paris, the euphoria of victory was replaced by the acknowledgment of organized genocide, a crisis of individual responsibility replaced the image of universal humanism, and the creative and intellectual life of Paris sought a new vocabulary to depict and describe the world. The dialog of existentialism first found a voice in literature and then became the metaphor for all the arts of the decade. This volume, published as the catalog for a 1993 Tate Gallery exhibition, examines the interaction and achievements of the figures in this seminal period in 20th-century art. The philosophical implications of the era are clearly presented in scholarly essays, while artists are represented by short biographical essays and excellent illustrations, and writers with briefer biographical comments. The book concludes with a useful chronology. An excellent guide through a time of enormous turmoil and vigorous creativity whose influence is still very much a part of contemporary artistic life; recommended for public and academic libraries.-Paula Frosch, Metropolitan Museum of Art Lib., New York
Published in conjunction with an exhibit of the same name at the Tate Gallery (UK), June-September 1993. More than simply a presentation of the visual arts, the exhibition (and the book) show how art, literature, the cinema, music, philosophy, and photography sustained and enriched one another during a period of great creativity in Paris. Featured in essays and representative reproductions are the lives of artists Antonin Artaud, Jean Dubuffet, Alberto Giacometti, among others, as well as writers of the period, each presented with a photo and brief essay. Distributed by the U. of Washington Press. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781854371249
  • Publisher: University of Washington Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/1994
  • Pages: 238

Table of Contents

Foreword 7
Acknowledgments 8
Sponsors' Prefaces 9
Presentation 12
Introduction 15
Paris Post War: In Search of the Absolute 25
Existentialism and Post-War British Art 53
The Artists 63
Antonin Artaud 65
Jean Dubuffet 79
Jean Fautrier 89
Alberto Giacometti 105
Francis Gruber 129
Jean Helion 135
Henri Michaux 143
Pablo Picasso 155
Germaine Richier 161
Bram van Velde 171
Wols 181
The Writers 205
Chronology 213
List of Works and Documentation 223
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