Unmonumental: The Object in the 21st Century

Overview

In a world falling to pieces, a new breed of art objects is capturing its fractured allure in three dimensions. UNMONUMENTAL features recent work by thirty contemporary sculptors at the vanguard of their craft, selected by one of contemporary art's top curatorial teams. The sculptures in UNMONUMENTAL are forerunners in a major new artistic development. They are powerful but patently un-heroic; assembled from bits of the world at large, they are sardonic metaphors for our time. The artists featured in the book ...
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Overview

In a world falling to pieces, a new breed of art objects is capturing its fractured allure in three dimensions. UNMONUMENTAL features recent work by thirty contemporary sculptors at the vanguard of their craft, selected by one of contemporary art's top curatorial teams. The sculptures in UNMONUMENTAL are forerunners in a major new artistic development. They are powerful but patently un-heroic; assembled from bits of the world at large, they are sardonic metaphors for our time. The artists featured in the book range from the just-emerged (Tobias Buche, Claire Fontaine, Gedi Sibony) to the internationally renowned (John Bock, Isa Genzken, Rachel Harrison). UNMONUMENTAL is generously illustrated with large full-color photographs of the works, most of which have never before been published. UNMONUMENTAL was created in conjunction with the inaugural exhibition of the New Museum of Contemporary Art's landmark new building, designed by Seijima + Nishazawa / SANAA, on the Bowery in New York.
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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

This catalog records a recent exhibition at the New Museum of Contemporary Art's new building in New York City. It gathers works created since 2000 by 30 young sculptors primarily from the United States and Europe and both well known (e.g., Rachel Harrison, Isa Genzken) and emerging (e.g., Claire Fontaine, Gedi Sibony). A brief biography and several pages of large-format, full-color images, many never before published, are allotted to each artist, while perceptive essays by curators Hoptman, Richard Flood, Massimiliano Gioni, and Trevor Smith are interspersed throughout. The title refers to the general look of these pieces, which tend to be human-scale, precarious assemblages of everyday materials juxtaposed in various ways. But unlike many such assemblages of earlier decades, each of these works, whose effects vary from the whimsical to the grotesque, has a point or narrative. An insightful tour recommended for large collections.
—David R. Conn

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780714863108
  • Publisher: Phaidon Press
  • Publication date: 1/23/2012
  • Pages: 216
  • Sales rank: 703,378
  • Product dimensions: 9.80 (w) x 11.30 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

RICHARD FLOOD is Chief Curator at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York.
LAURA HOPTMAN is Senior Curator at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York.
MASSIMILIANO GIONI is Curator at the New Museum of Contemporary Art, New York, and Artistic Director at Fondazione Trussardi, Milan.
TREVOR SMITH is Curator-in-Residence at the Center for Curatorial Studies, Bard College, Annandale-on-Hudson, New York.
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