A Short History of the Shadow
By (author) Victor Stoichita
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Short History of the Shadow by Victor Stoichita
Book DescriptionIn this investigative tour de force, Victor I. Stoichita untangles the history of one of the most enduring technical and symbolic challenges to beset Western artists - the depiction and meanings of shadows. The representation of shadow, and especially of cast shadow, is as old as art itself, for according to classical writers art was born when the outline of a human shadow thrown onto a wall was first traced out in order to capture it in the form of a silhouette. But the history of the shadow is properly the history of light versus dark, for in addition to indicating relief and volume or the times of day, shadows can intimate subtler interior realities - from states of mind to the state of the soul. According to J. C. Lavater in the 18th century, for example, it was the shadow of the face, not the face itself, that was the soul's reflection. More recently Andy Warhol, in his Shadows canvases, and Joseph Beuys have in turn explored the idea of the shadow as the hyper-realized revelation of utter human emptiness and as the self's awesomely powerful Doppelganger.Stoichita's compelling account of the shadow and Western art, which draws on texts by Renaissance artist-authors like Vasari and Cennini, folk tales, fairy tales and classical myths, works by van Eyck, Poussin, Malevich, De Chirico, Picasso and other masters, German Expressionist cinema, photography and child psychology, is a wholly original incursion into a subject that for centuries has challenged the very meaning of art as representation.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9781861890009
(234mm x 156mm x 21mm)
Imprint: Reaktion Books
Publisher: Reaktion Books
Publish Date: 30-Apr-1997
Country of Publication: United Kingdom
Books By Author Victor Stoichita
Goya, Paperback (November 1999)
This text provides a new reading of Goya, concentrating on the closing years of the 18th century as a neglected milestone in his life. Goya waited until 1799 to publish his celebrated series of drawings, the "Caprichos", which offered a personal vision of the "world turned upside down".
Visionary Experience in the Golden Age of Spanish Art, Paperback (October 1995)» View all books by Victor Stoichita
An account of how Spanish painters of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries dealt with mystic visions in their art, and of how they attempted to 'represent the unrepresentable' that aims to establish a theory of visionary imagery in Western art in general, and one for the Spanish Counter-Reformation in particular.
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Author Biography - Victor Stoichita
Victor I. Stoichita is Professor of the History of Art at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. He is the author of Visionary Experience in the Golden Age of Spanish Art (1997), and co-author of Goya: The Last Carnival (1999), both published by Reaktion Books.
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