Cubism, Futurism and the Great War, Part One

Creating a Modern Visual Vocabulary of War Part One In 1911, the Futurist artist Umberto Boccioni (1882-1916) organized an exhibition of fifty Futurist paintings for the working class. Called Esposizione d’ate libera, the show featured Carlo Carrà (1881-1966)...

Imagining The Great War, Part Three

The End of the World: Ludwig Meidner and the Apocalyptic Paintings The avant-garde arrived late in Germany. Not only was modern art late, it also landed in the cities of Germany unchronologically, in bits and pieces, entirely lacking sequence, reft of developmental...

Imagining The Great War, Part Two

The Coming Apocalypse: Ludwig Meidner and the Poets In the winter of 1912, the German poet Georg Heym fell through a hole in the ice and drowned. The strange death of the twenty-four year of poet was surrounded by an odd mixture of conjecture and fact. It was thought...

Imagining The Great War, Part One

The Coming Apocalypse: Kandinsky and Marc Never such innocence, Never before or since, As changed itself to past Without a word — the men Leaving the gardens tidy, The thousands of marriages Lasting a little while longer: Never such innocence again.            ...

Photography as Art/Art as Photography

From Photo-Secession to 291 There is an old question, what came first, the chicken or the egg? For the history of photography, the question can be re-written: what come first Camera Work, the journalistic organ for the Photo-Secession or Photo-Secession itself? The...

Pictorialism in America

Photo-Secession as Pictorialism Part One At the turn of the century, as the nineteenth century waned, it was quite possible to speak of a “beautiful photograph” or,  more precisely, of a photograph of something “beautiful.” But that photograph...

Peter Henry Emerson (1856-1936)

Naturalistic Photography It all started with George Davison (1854 – 1930) and a deceptively simple image,originally titled, An Old Farmstead. This charming photograph, reminiscent of an Impressionist landscape, was awarded a medal at the annual exhibition of the...

Pictorialism in England, Part Two

The Annans, Father and Son From Document to Art Around 1890 the world of photographers changed. Before the end of the nineteenth century, photography had been very much an individual enterprise. The practitioner, whether amateur or professional customarily was...

Photographing Victorian Fantasies, Part Two

Fairies and Spirits: Resisting Modernity Part Two: The Fairies Arrive In Strange and Secret Peoples. Fairies and Victorian Consciousness (1999), Carol Silver, explained that fairies were a uniquely English phenomenon, part of the folklore of the British Isles. The...

Photographing Victorian Fantasies, Part One

Fairies and Spirits: Resisting Modernity Part One: The Spirits Return The English fin-de-siècle was quite different from the French fin-de-siècle. A mere glance at the art of London in comparison to that of Paris shows a French society racing ahead to the twentieth...

Composite Photography in Victorian Times

Photography as Collage In the halls of the history of photography, the name of William Notman (1826-1891), does not often appear, and yet he is one of the most adept practitioners of the Victorian phenomenon known as “composite” photography or...

Photographing Poverty in Nineteenth Century America

Jacob Riis and the Other Half During a period of open borders, the Age of Mass Migration, which extended from 1850 to 1913, brought thirty million individuals, men, women, children, and families to the New World. They came in ships that were built increasingly larger...

Photographing the Other: Edward Curtis, Part Two

Photography as Re-Enactment Part Two When photographer Edward Curtis began his monumental twenty volume project on the Native American Tribes of North America, the term “documentary photographer,” had yet to be invented. Such was the certainty that a...

Photographing the Other: Edward Curtis, Part One

Photography as Re-Enactment Part One It is difficult to know what to do with Edward Curtis (1868-1952)–was he a photographer, an anthropologist, an ethnographer, a film director, a historian? Did he combine all of these disciplines or did Curtis participate in...

If you have found this material useful, please give credit to Dr. Jeanne S. M. Willette and Art History Unstuffed.
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