Barnett Newman by Thomas B. Hess
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New York. Walker and Company. 1969. First Edition. Hardcover. Book Condition: Fine, vivid reproductions, gentle fading to pages. Jacket Condition: Fine, slight markings on back cover. 91pp. 27 plates w. photo reproductions (ill. in colour & b/w).
From Thomas Hess, a critic and the editor of Art News magazine, is the first thorough monograph dedicated to Barnett Newman. Newman was a major influence to the artists that came after him, who followed the path he opened into color fields, the stripe, and encounters with an un-figured, monumental canvas. In this publication, Hess takes us through a rigorous timeline and analysis of Newman's life and work, presenting both biography and art history in the same sentence. Thorough and intimate, the text is framed by black & white photos of Newman throughout his life, along with vibrant plates of his works. It is interesting: Newman's opinion is that his art represents a way of "freeing ourselves from memory, association, nostalgia, myth...the image[s] [I] produce [are] the self-evident one[s] of revelation." Well, Hess takes all the things Newman doesn't believe in, and presents a dimensional representation that doesn't lack in revelation, of Newman as a person, a painter, and a critical point in art history.
Cover: Barnett Newman, Treble, 1960. Oil, 20 ¼ x 6 ¾ in.