Framing America: A Social History of American Art / Edition 3

Framing America: A Social History of American Art / Edition 3

by Frances K. Pohl
ISBN-10:
0500289832
ISBN-13:
2900500289838
Pub. Date:
04/01/2012
Publisher:
Thames & Hudson

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Overview

Framing America: A Social History of American Art / Edition 3

For more than a generation, critics and scholars have been revising and expanding the customary definition of American art. A tradition once assumed to be mainly European and oriented toward painting and sculpture has been enriched by the inclusion of other media such as ceramics, needlework, and illustration, and the work of previously marginalized groups such as Native Americans, African Americans, Latinos, and Asian Americans. Now, in a brilliant combination of original scholarship and synthesis, Frances Pohl's Framing America provides the first comprehensive survey of this new, enlarged vision of American art.

Here are the many strands of North America's history and visual culture: the first contacts of the Spanish with the Aztecs and other Native Americans; the post-Revolutionary definition of nationhood; the visionary feeling for landscape and nature; the images of social and military conflict of the nineteenth century; and the tempering of the twentieth century's heady plunge into modernism by the Depression, World War II, the Cold War, and the culture wars.

Pohl's account is an adroitly inclusive fusion of many themes. Her discussion of the early definition of nationhood includes the traditional painters of the grand manner: West, Copley, Trumbull, and Stuart. But Stuart's portraits of George Washington, for instance, are also discussed in relation to portrayals of Washington in wood, marble, and embroidery, and the vogue for "mourning pictures" after Washington's death, which create a domestic counterpoint to the more institutional portrayals. Pohl's description of the great landscape tradition of Cole, Durand, and Church shows how the optimistic assertion of a sublime sense of the American nation was accompanied by a sense of loss as the nation expanded westward.

As our appreciation of the rich cultural diversity of American life has grown, our sense of American art—its sources, its motives, its possibilities—has also become more varied. Fresh and contemporary, Framing America embraces what our history can tell us about our art and what our art can tell us about our past and present. 665 illustrations, 337 in color.

Author Biography: Frances K. Pohl is Professor of Art History at Pomona College.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 2900500289838
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
Publication date: 04/01/2012
Edition description: Third Edition
Pages: 616
Product dimensions: 8.50(w) x 10.90(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Frances K. Pohl is the Dr. Mary Ann Vanderzyl Reynolds Professor of Humanities and Professor of Art History at Pomona College in Claremont, California. She received her Ph.D. from the University of California, Los Angeles. Since moving to Pomona in 1985, she has taught a wide variety of courses in nineteenth- and twentieth-century North American art. Her work has focused on the art of the United States, in particular the work of Ben Shahn, about whom she has written two books, and the relationship between the visual arts and working-class culture. Professor Pohl has taught in the United States for many years, but her Canadian origins give her a unique continental perspective on American art.

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