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Library JournalHere, Brodie (curator, modern prints & drawings, National Gallery of Art) tackles a rich but underexplored subject: newspapers as raw material and as subject matter in modern art. In the early 20th century, European and American readers devoured newspapers as voraciously as today people absorb the Internet. Artists were drawn to them, too, and began to work with scraps of newsprint, tearing and shaping the material, punning and playing with words culled from headlines, articles, advertisements. Other artists appropriated methods of newspaper publishing, broadcasting manifestos or creating mock newspapers as a medium of social or political critique. This catalog, published in concert with an exhibition organized by the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC, features high-quality color illustrations of works by some 60 artists with text describing the materials and techniques used and discussion of each piece’s themes. The three essays that conclude the book will be most rewarding to readers looking for more in-depth information. (Sarah Boxer’s, in particular, is intriguing: she describes an epic struggle to transform newspaper itself from a medium for news into one for art.)
Verdict Both general readers and academics will appreciate the intelligent essays and excellent illustrations.—Michael Dashkin, New York(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.