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Dialogues in Art History, from Mesopotamian to Modern

Readings for a New Century (Studies in the History of Art Series)

Elizabeth Cropper (Editor)


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This spirited and challenging book presents dialogues between eminent art historians on current topics and dilemmas in the field. The essays consider world art of all periods, covering ancient Egypt, Mesopotamia, preconquest Mexico and Peru, Islam, China, Japan, Renaissance and baroque Italy, 18th- and 19th-century France, and the United States in the 20th century and today.


The authors propose new readings as they challenge traditional systems of classification; interpret monuments in terms of their interaction with their environments; redefine the Italian Renaissance in light of the new vernacular sensibility that emerged in the Trecento; view portraiture both in close detail and in social and historical perspective; and point to the need to reconcile historical coherence with complexity in museum displays. 


Contributors include Svetlana Alpers, Elizabeth Hill Boone, Philippe Bordes, Betsy M. Bryan, C. Jean Campbell, Joseph Connors, Charles Dempsey, Marian H. Feldman, Finbarr Barry Flood, Hal Foster, Marc Gotlieb, Ewa Lajer-Burcharth, Michael Leja, Yukio Lippit, Joanne Pillsbury, Louise Rice, David J. Roxburgh, Jeffrey Weiss, Mariët Westermann, and Wu Hung.

NGW-Stud Hist Art, 9780300121629, 424pp.

Publication Date: May 26, 2009

About the Author

Elizabeth Cropper is dean of the Center for Advanced Study in Visual Arts, National Gallery of Art. Svetlana Alpersis professor emerita of the histoy of art at University of California - Berkeley, and visiting scholar in the department of art history at New York University. Elizabeth Hill Boone is the Robertson Chair in Latin American art at Tulane University and former director of pre-Columbian studies at Dumbarton Oaks. Philippe Bordes is professor of art history at the Universite de Lyon 2 and Directeur des etudes et de la recherche at the Institut national d'histoire de l'art in Paris. Betsy M. Bryan is the Alexander Badawy Professor of Egyptian art and archaeology at Johns Hopkins University. C. Jean Campbell is professor of art history at Emory University. Joseph Connors is director of Villa I Tatti, the Harvard Center for Italian Renaissance Studies in Florence. Charles Dempsey is professor emeritus of Italian renaissance and baroque art at Johns Hopkins University.  Marian H. Feldman is associate professor of ancient Near Eastern art at the University of California - Berkeley. Finbarr Barry Flood is associate professor in the Institute of Fine Arts and department of art history at New York University. Hal Foster is Townsend Martin, Class of 1917, Professor and chair of the department of art and archaeology at Princeton University. Marc Gotlieb is professor of art history at Williams College, and director of the Williams/Clark Art Institute graduate program in the history of art. Wu Hung is Harrie A. Vanderstappen Distinguished Service Professor in Chinese art history and director of the Center for the Art of East Asia at the University of Chicago. Ewa Lajer-Burcharth is professor of the history of art and architecture at Harvard University. Michael Leja is professor of the history of art at the University of Pennsylvania. Yukio Lippit is assistant professor of Japanese art in the department of history of art and architecture at Harvard University. Joanne Pillsbury is director of pre-Columbian studies at Dumbarton Oaks. Louise Rice is an associate professor of art history at New York University and the James S. Ackerman Resident in Art History at the American Academy in Rome for 2008. David J. Roxburgh is Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Professor of Islamic art history in the department of history of art and architecture at Harvard University. Jeffrey Weiss is an independent scholar, and the former director of the Dia Art Foundation and head of modern and contemporary art at the National Gallery of Art, Washington. Mariet Westermann is vice chancellor for New York University in Abu Dhabi.