Winslow Homer

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The book discusses and reproduces more than two hundred paintings, watercolors, and drawings that span Homer's career, all of which are discussed in entries by Cikovsky and Kelly. It begins with the Civil War paintings that first brought Homer's remarkable artistic mentality to public attention, in which he movingly expressed the profound implications the war held for the nation. Homer's interest in national themes is further explored in his works of the later 1860s and 1870s, which embraced a wide spectrum of ...
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Winslow Homer NY 1990 Hardcover 1st Edition New in New jacket Book. 4to-over 9?-12" tall. This is a New and Unread copy of the first edition (1st printing). In a like dust ... jacket. From the "Library of American Art" series. Read more Show Less

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HOMER, WINSLOW 1990 Hard cover First edition. New in very good dust jacket. Includes illustrations. NEW NO DUST COVER

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Overview

The book discusses and reproduces more than two hundred paintings, watercolors, and drawings that span Homer's career, all of which are discussed in entries by Cikovsky and Kelly. It begins with the Civil War paintings that first brought Homer's remarkable artistic mentality to public attention, in which he movingly expressed the profound implications the war held for the nation. Homer's interest in national themes is further explored in his works of the later 1860s and 1870s, which embraced a wide spectrum of American life. His shift toward more idealized and heroic imagery and his withdrawal to a solitary life at Prout's Neck, Maine, in the 1880s are discussed as turning points leading to the great achievements of his last two decades. After considering his beautiful late watercolors of the Tropics and the Adirondacks, and his monumental Prout's Neck seascapes, the book concludes with a reassessment of the tragic, almost visionary paintings of his last years. The book is also the catalogue for a major exhibition on Homer's works, opening at the National Gallery of Art on 15 October 1995 and traveling to the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, and The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.

This catalogue for the first major retrospective of Winslow Homer's works examines the immensity of Homer's artistic accomplishments, focusing not only on his masterpieces in various media, but also on the suites of works on the same subject that reflect the artist's essentially modern practice of thinking and working serially and thematically. 485 illustrations, including 260 color plates.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Instead of Winslow Homer as unvarnished, naive democrat, an artist divorced from the intellectual life of his times, Cikovsky gives us a painter who was a modernist in his detachment, anxiety and impersonality. Plunging into New York City's seething cultural milieu in the 1860s, the Boston-born illustrator joined a loose artistic circle that included jounalist Eugene Benson, whose programmatic call for a modern, national, indigenous art struck a chord in Homer. But disillusionment set in with the corrupt Gilded Age of the 1870s, and Homer took refuge in art, plumbing nature's elemental power in his seascapes, and investigating the act of seeing in vibrant, spontaneous watercolors of the tropics or the Maine coast. His later paintings grasp death with almost mystical immediacy. Curator of American art at the National Gallery, Cikovsky lays bare new worlds of meaning in this immensely rewarding, superbly illustrated reassessment. (July)
Library Journal
The 19th-century realist Winslow Homer first gained wide renown with his Civil War battlefield illustrations in Harper's Weekly. A year spent in Paris after the war led to a greater acuity of vision, and by the mid-1870s he was one of the leading progenitors of naturalism and the most celebrated American painter of his day. Known for his watercolors, which have all the intensity and ardor of the most accomplished oil paintings, the solid outlines and luminosity of his surfaces show little influence from his contemporaries the Impressionists. His art was unquestionably individual and native. He was a reclusive outdoorsman who captured dozens of scenes highlighting the milieus he loved: seafaring vessels, Adirondack and Canadian hunting grounds, Bahamian beaches, and the rocky coast of Maine, to which he retreated in his last years. This outstanding new book is the catalog of a retrospective of 235 paintings touring East Coast museumsthe largest gathering of his work ever. Cikovsky and Kelly (curators of American and British art at the National Gallery of Art) divide his career into eight chronological chapters, each with a straightforward, expository essay securely planting the work in a geographical and biographical context. The format is large but unostentatious, striking the perfect balance between text and illustration. This is easily the fairest, most intelligent, and best survey to date on this popular American master.Douglas F. Smith, Oakland P.L., Cal.
Donna Seaman
Winslow Homer (18361910) was in the news as a comprehensive retrospective of his magnificent paintings and watercolors opened at the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., an exhibition that will live on between the covers of this spectacular volume. Cikovsky and Kelly, curators at the National Gallery, present a contextually rich and vibrant analysis of Homer's life and groundbreaking work. A self-taught artist with an "almost sensuous love of paint," Homer, like so many of his contemporaries, was deeply affected by the Civil War. His early illustrations and paintings demonstrate his "technical strength and assurance; color, modeling, and drawing; truthfulness, and lack of sentimentality," qualities he would elevate to new levels as he moved on to paint candid scenes of everyday life. There is an earthy grace to his dignified, hardworking figures, many of whom gaze contemplatively out into the distance, a gaze not unlike that of the artist himself. The authors track Homer's major themes, all of which are intrinsically connected to place, and discuss the progression from ideology to aesthetics, from shimmering pastoral romance to dark and stormy seas. Homer was a master not only of technique but also of interpreting light, motion, and our complex relationship with nature.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780810911932
  • Publisher: Abrams, Harry N., Inc.
  • Publication date: 6/1/1990
  • Series: Library of American Art
  • Pages: 160
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 12.50 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Table of Contents

Lenders to the Exhibition 6
Foreword 7
Acknowledgments 9
Introduction 13
The School of War 17
Modern and National 61
Reconstruction 95
A Process of Change 171
Something More than Meets the Eye 247
Innovation in Homer's Late Watercolors 283
Time and Narrative Erased 301
Good Pictures 369
Chronology 391
Exhibitions in Homer's Lifetime 407
Select Bibliography 414
Index of Titles 419
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