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  • Empires - The Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance
    Empires - The Medici: Godfathers of the Renaissance
    A fascinating and highly entertaining look at one of the most important families of the Renaissance era--the Medici.
  • Sister Wendy - The Complete Collection (Story of Painting / Grand Tour / Odyssey / Pains of Glass)
    Sister Wendy - The Complete Collection (Story of Painting / Grand Tour / Odyssey / Pains of Glass)

    “Sister Wendy Beckett has transformed public appreciation of art through her astonishing knowledge, insight and passion for painting and painters.” This set includes Sister Wendy's Story of Painting, Sister Wendy's Odyssey, and Sister Wendy's Grand Tour. Simultaneously delightful and scholarly--this is a must have for anyone interested in art history.

  • Exit Through the Gift Shop
    Exit Through the Gift Shop
    When British stencil artist Banksy traveled to Los Angeles to work, he came across obscure French filmmaker Thierry Guetta and his badly organized collection of videotapes involving the activities of graffiti artists. Inspired, Banksy assembled them with new footage to create this talked-about documentary, and the result is a mind-boggling and odd film (so strange as to be thought a hoax by some) about outsider artists and the definition of art itself.
  • The Impressionists
    The Impressionists
    A dramatization of the Impressionist movement as seen through the eyes of Claude Monet. Highly entertaining and informative.
  • The Impressionists: The Other French Revolution
    The Impressionists: The Other French Revolution
    A very personal and revealing look at the personalities that created Impressionism.

Entries in Ashcan School (2)

Friday
Oct052018

William Glackens: A Rejection of Academic Dictates  

William Glackens - Hammerstein’s Roof Garden - c. 1901 - Oil on linen - 29 7/8 × 24 13/16 in. (75.9 × 63 cm) - Whitney Museum of American Art - New York, NY (click photo for larger image)American artist William J. Glackens (1870-1938) created paintings of street scenes and middle-class urban life that rejected the dictates of 19th-century academic art and introduced a matter-of-fact realism into the art of the United States.

Although he did not identify himself as part of the Ashcan School (discussed elsewhere on What About Art?), Glackens' attention to ordinary, modern, urban subjects and their unidealized presentation connects him to the core tenets of that movement. In documenting his world, he also incorporated the style of the Impressionists (particularly Renoir), as well as their interest in contemporary, urban leisure.

“Hammerstein's Roof Garden captures a fashionable entertainment venue, immediately placing the viewer in a specific and contemporary urban space. Such roof gardens were popular spots during the summer, when theaters were often closed due to the stifling heat. Recently opened by theater legend Oscar Hammerstein in 1899, this locale, the Paradise Roof Garden, was a popular destination for the sort of spectacular which we see here.

Positioning the viewer as a member of the audience, we see a row of fashionably dressed women who watch a pair of tightrope walkers. The costumes of the acrobats provide a jolt of color in an otherwise muted tonal palette. With this limited scene, Glackens gives us a sense of the immense space of the theater, its popularity, its clientele and its performances. Providing respectable entertainment, the presence of unchaperoned young women points to the modernity of this scene (previously, such unescorted adventures would have been unthinkable), further emphasized by the recognizable architecture and real-life locale.” (The Art Story) 

Monday
Jun022014

An Ashcan Schooler

William Glackens - La Villette - 1895 - Oil on canvas - Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh (click photo for larger image)William James Glackens (1870-1938) was an American artist whose paintings of street scenes and middle-class urban life rejected the dictates of 19th-century academic art and introduced a matter-of-fact realism into the art of the United States. Glackens was associated with the Ashcan School—also known as the New York Realists.