By Robert M. Crunden
In American Salons, Robert Crunden presents a sweeping account of the yank stumble upon with eu Modernism as much as the yank access into international warfare I. Crunden starts off with deft images of the figures who have been primary to the delivery of Modernism, together with James Whistler, the eccentric expatriate American painter who turned the archetypal artist in his gown and behaviour, and Henry and William James, who broke new flooring within the style of the unconventional and in psychology, influencing a global viewers in a vast diversity of fields. on the middle of the publication are the yank salons--the intimate, own gatherings of artists and intellectuals the place Modernism flourished. In Chicago, Floyd Dell and Margery Currey unfold new principles to Sherwood Anderson, Theodore Dreiser, and others. In London, Ezra Pound should be discovered at the back of every thing from the cigars of W. B. Yeats to the prose of Ford Madox Hueffer. In Paris, the salons of Leo and Gertrude Stein, and Michael and Sarah Stein, gave Picasso and Matisse their first safe audiences and earning; in the meantime, Gertrude Stein produced a brand new writing sort that had an incalculable impression at the new release of Ernest Hemingway. most crucial of all have been the salons of latest York urban. Alfred Stieglitz pioneered new kinds of images on the well-known 291 Gallery. Mabel ward off introduced jointly modernist playwrights and painters, introducing them to political reformers and radicals. on the salon of Walter and Louise Arensberg, Marcel Duchamp and Francis Picabia rubbed shoulders with Wallace Stevens, guy Ray, and William Carlos Williams. via 1917, no artwork in the US remained untouched via those new associations. From the journalism of H. L. Mencken to the well-known 1913 Armory convey in long island, Crunden illuminates this pivotal period, supplying perceptive insights and evocative descriptions of the critical personalities of Modernism.
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Extra info for American Salons: Encounters with European Modernism, 1885-1917
Wilde's plays and The Picture of Dorian Gray were all important in aestheticism, and when Lord Wotton tells Dorian: "Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you! Let nothing be lost upon you. 34 V England attracted artists for many social and commercial reasons, but produced few major ones of its own. Those it had did conventional work or went into exile. Paris was the great breeding ground of the new, and Paris was where Whistler belonged if he belonged anywhere. In Paris, a tradition of artistic unconventionality stretched back almost a century from the time of Whistler's maturity.
At the same time that Whistler and his friends were deciding between the relative values of truth and beauty, they were wrestling with the closely related problem of the subject. Their attitudes were by no means clear and consistent; Whistler's theoretical position did not always match the canvases he produced. By 1867, he had rebelled against the realism of his early days. In a lengthy letter to Fantin-Latour, he insisted that in his own case "Courbet and his influence has been disgusting. The regret that I feel and the rage—hate even—that I have now for it would perhaps astonish you .
The point is that the Murger picture of artistic life, in Scenes de la vie de boheme, did more to define the type than any other. The book made no great aesthetic point, but it pinpointed the south side of the Seine in the area around the Sorbonne as a "bohemia" in which a new class had developed. Students and artists there had no money, wore poor clothes, lived in shabby quarters, drank when they could, had sexual partners who came and went, delighted in swift repartee and bad puns. 36 Bohemia fascinated Whistler, if only because it was so different from life with mother in Pomfret, and he certainly approved of the freer sexual atmosphere.
American Salons: Encounters with European Modernism, 1885-1917 by Robert M. Crunden