Concise, critical reviews of books, exhibitions, and projects in all areas and periods of art history and visual studies

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Scenario: The three former field editors for theory and historiography reflect on the state of the field(s) and try to place reviewing in the theoretical life of art history as it has been practiced historically—and as it is practiced today. Andrei Pop: To start us off: theory and historiography strike some people, especially working art historians, as disembodied. Is there a vivid memory you have from your stint editing for caa.reviews, one that jumps out at you? Passionate exchanges with a reviewer or author? Or with a reader or book? David Carrier: In general, the biggest problem was getting… Full Review
C. D. Dickerson III, Anthony Sigel, and Ian Wardropper
Exh. cat. New York: Metropolitan Museum of Art. 432 pp.; 437 color ills.; 35 b/w ills. Cloth $65.00 (9780300185003)
Exhibition schedule: Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, October 3, 2012–January 6, 2013; Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, February 3–May 5, 2013
[See the multimedia media review on Scalar.] Thanks to a generous grant from the Mellon-funded Alliance for Networking Visual Culture in 2013, caa.reviews was able to complete a pilot project using the Scalar multimedia digital platform to create a “book” permitting its readers to experience virtually the 2012–13 exhibition Bernini: Sculpting in Clay (in its showing at the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, Texas). This fall, caa.reviews revisits the breathtaking Bernini exhibition by highlighting this multimedia project. The project features a number of elements, including an introductory essay; a video walkthrough that permits website visitors to experience… Full Review
October 25, 2019
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On the heels of the recent publication of their books Otherwise: Imagining Queer Feminist Art Histories and Abstract Bodies: Sixties Sculpture in the Expanded Field of Gender, Amelia Jones and David Getsy initiated a conversation about these books and the current state of and future directions for art history’s engagements with gender and sexuality.[i] The following dialogue was conducted by email over the course of the summer and fall of 2017, and it is presented by caa.reviews as part of its commitment to engage with new ideas in art-historical and art-critical writing. Amelia Jones: Perhaps we could start… Full Review
February 16, 2018
College Art Association.
Introduction Design is a rich word. Its core meaning is a plan, so it refers by extension to evidence of the activity of planning, such as blueprints, technical drawings, and sketches on the backs of envelopes. However, it is also used to refer to the products of the activity of designing, such as designed objects, systems, and behaviors. Design history encompasses the study of design in order to find out about the past, and the study of the past in order to better understand design. Here I will briefly sketch the development of design history for those unfamiliar… Full Review
November 16, 2016
The Getty Foundation
Los Angeles: Getty Foundation.
The Getty Online Scholarly Catalogue Initiative (OSCI) Art Institute of Chicago Monet Paintings and Drawings at the Art Institute of Chicago https://publications.artic.edu/monet/reader/paintingsanddrawings/section/135470 Art Institute of Chicago Renoir Paintings and Drawings at the Art Institute of Chicago https://publications.artic.edu/renoir/reader/paintingsanddrawings/section/138973 Freer/Sackler Galleries The World of the Japanese Illustrated Book: The Gerhard Pulverer Collection http://pulverer.si.edu/ Los Angeles County Museum of Art Southeast Asian Art: An Online Scholarly Catalogue at LACMA http://seasian.catalog.lacma.org/ National Gallery of Art Dutch Paintings of the Seventeenth Century, by Arthur K. Wheelock, Jr. http://www.nga.gov/content/ngaweb/research/online-editions/17th-century-dutch-paintings.html/ San… Full Review
October 6, 2016
Exhibition schedule: Tate Modern, London, May 15–16, 2015
[See the multimedia version on Scalar.] Introduction: “If caa.reviews were performance.reviews?” This jointly authored review of Boris Charmatz’s If Tate Modern Was Musée de la Danse? (2015) inaugurates a new initiative, spearheaded by the editorial board of caa.reviews, to review time-based media. The increasing prominence of dance, performance, video, film, and sound works in museum and gallery exhibitions gives caa.reviews an opportunity not simply to broaden the journal’s scope, but also to bring a range of diverse perspectives to bear on this growing phenomenon. By inviting scholars of dance to write this review,… Full Review
September 8, 2016
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Exhibition schedule: Tate Modern, London, May 15–16, 2015
[See the multimedia version on Scalar.] Museum Metaphysics: 20 Dancers for the XX Century and Dance’s Ontology in the Museum As I walked through Tate Modern’s “Witty, Sexy, Gimmicky: Pop 1957–67” gallery on May 15, 2015, I encountered Frédéric Seguette removing T-shirt after T-shirt in a performance of Jerôme Bel’s Shirtology (1997). Seguette’s performance was part of Boris Charmatz’s 20 Dancers for the XX Century, a performative exhibition of selected moments in the history of twentieth-century dance; this work was previously staged at the Museum of Modern Art in 2013 and subsequently reincarnated at… Full Review
September 8, 2016
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Exhibition schedule: Tate Modern, London, May 15–16, 2015
[See the multimedia version on Scalar.] Unauthorized Performance in the Turbine Hall Boris Charmatz’s If Tate Modern Was Musée de la danse? transformed Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall into a space for the display of movement. (Previous inhabitations of Turbine Hall have had similar aims. An indicative list might be found in the series of installations that made up Tate’s Unilever Series [2000–8].) Dancers performed choreography at scheduled moments, and a twice-daily disco—titled Adrénaline: A Dance Floor for Everyone—invited the museum audience to dance together. During the two days of programming, ebbing and flowing groups… Full Review
September 8, 2016
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Exhibition schedule: Tate Modern, London, May 15–16, 2015
[See the multimedia version on Scalar.] Adrénaline: A Dance Floor for Everyone Adrénaline: A Dance Floor for Everyone, an open disco hour reminiscent of a pop-up dance club, emerged twice a day at Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall, under a shimmering giant disco ball. Led by the enticing sets of DJ Oneman and DJ Jonjo Jury, respectively, this event was undoubtedly democratic and welcoming, fulfilling the premise of a communal celebration of the act of dancing. (I write about Saturday, May 16, 2015, which featured DJ Oneman during the first Adrénaline hour [5:15 pm–6:15 pm]… Full Review
September 8, 2016
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Eddie Chambers
Re-Views: Field Editors’ Reflections, caa.reviews. College Art Association.
Re-Views: Field Editors’ Reflections caa.reviews Today marks a historic moment for caa.reviews, because with our fourth installment of “Re-Views: Field Editors’ Reflections” the journal is acknowledging its commitment to reviewing scholarly books about African, African American, and African Diaspora art. No one is more responsible for this focus than field editor Eddie Chambers, who since July 2014 has tirelessly shepherded more than twenty reviews from commission to publication, with many more on the way. In explaining how he understands the mission, he writes: “I see my work as a field editor as having the potential to enhance… Full Review
April 21, 2016