Art Interrupted: Advancing American Art and the Politics of Cultural Diplomacy
Harper, Dennis et al.
Price: 31.50 USD
Athens, Ga: Georgia Museum of Art, University of Georgia, 2012. Black cloth, black & gray & illus. dust jacket, 273 pp., many color illus.; weighs 4.5 lbs. Issued in conjunction with a series of 2012-2014 exhibitions. " In 1946, ... a project known as Advancing American Art ... called for the acquisition of modernist paintings by contemporary American artists with the intention of traveling the art through the Latin American republics, Eastern Europe and Asia. Its objective was to exemplify the freedom of expression enjoyed by artists in a democracy while demonstrating America's artistic coming of age. Within months after Advancing American Art began its exhibition tours, controversy over the program erupted in the American media, government forums and public discourse. Many observers lambasted the paintings selected for the project, and the artists themselves, as un-American and subversive. Several of the artists had left-leaning political views and the collection, by design, largely avoided representational styles. Facing intense disapproval by Congress with the prospect of losing all funding for its cultural programs abroad, the State Department chose to recall the exhibitions and the paintings were soon sold at auction. "Art Interrupted: Advancing American Art and the Politics of Cultural Diplomacy" examines the development and swift demise of this ambitious but ill-fated instrument of foreign policy. ... The curtailed tour in 1947 prevented a full consideration of what the paintings had to say about the artists and the period in which they were created. Nearly 70 years after the paintings were first assembled, the organizers of the present exhibition ... have worked together to give the artists and the original State Department organizers their due acknowledgment. From a checklist of 117 oils and watercolors sold as war surplus in 1948, "Art Interrupted" reunites all but 10 paintings, for which there are no known locations, in an exhibition that demonstrates again the great worth in freedom and diversity." (Georgia Museum of Art) One of 2000 copies. VG (May have mild wear to corner of dj).