Robert Atkins

Robert Atkins

Robert Atkins, an art historian and writer trained at the University of California, Berkeley, is a former staff columnist for the Village Voice. He has contributed to numerous other publications, from The New York Times to Wired, and curated exhibitions at venues ranging from the São Paulo Bienal to the New Museum of Contemporary Art in New York. Atkins is a founding member of Visual AIDS, creators of Day With(out) Art and the Red Ribbon. His other books include ArtSpoke and Censoring Culture: Contemporary Threats to Free Expression.

ArtSpeak

A Guide to Contemporary Ideas, Movements, and Buzzwords, 1945 to the Present

By

A revised and expanded third edition of the leading lexicon of contemporary art, now illustrated in full color throughout.

On the twenty-fifth anniversary of its original publication, the best-selling ArtSpeak returns in a fully redesigned third edition, featuring nearly 150 alphabetical entries—30 of them entirely new, and others updated—that explain the who, when, where, and what of postwar and contemporary art, from Abstract Expressionism to zeitgeist. These concise essays on key artistic terms are written with wit and common sense by veteran art historian and critic Robert Atkins, who also provides a year-by-year timeline of world and art-world events from 1945 to the present. Some 80 images, most in full color, illustrate iconic works of the movements discussed, making ArtSpeak a visual as well as a textual reference.

The new terms in this edition of ArtSpeak include not only recent movements, such as the Leipzig School and San Francisco’s Mission School, but also past movements that have attained a new critical prominence, such as Japan’s Mono-ha group and Brazilian Neoconcretism. Also discussed are the growing constellation of new media and intermedia practices, the social and economic structures of the art world, and the theoretical concepts that interest artists and critics today. Particular attention is given to the key terms of contemporary Chinese art—from Rustic Realism to Political Pop—reflecting China’s growing importance on the global scene.

Long established as an indispensable reference for art-world neophytes and seasoned professionals alike, ArtSpeak will continue to attract a broad and appreciative audience in this attractive new edition.

Read more

Artspoke

A Guide to Modern Ideas, Movements, and Buzzwords, 1848-1944

By

This successor to the phenomenally popular Artspeak: A Guide To Contemporary Ideas, Movements, and Buzzwords chronicles international art from realism through surrealism.

An invaluable guide through the intricacies of the first century of modern art, ArtSpoke features the same lucid prose, thought-provoking ideas, user-friendly organization, and striking design as its predecessor, ArtSpeak: A Guide to Contemporary Ideas, Movements, and Buzzwords.

Chronicling international art from Realism through Surrealism, ArtSpoke explains such popular but often misunderstood movements and organizations as Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, the Salon, the Fauves, the Harlem Renaissance, and so on—as well as events ranging from the 1913 Armory Show to Brazil's little-known Semana de Arte Moderna. Concise explanations of potentially perplexing techniques, media, and philosophies of art making-including automatism, calotype, found object, Pictorialism, and Readymade-provide information essential to understanding how artists of this era worked and why the results look the way they do. Entries on concepts that were crucial to the development of modern art—such as androgyny, dandyism, femme fatale, spiritualism, and many others—distinguish this lively guide from any other art dictionary on the market.

Also unique to this volume is the ArtChart, a handy one-page chronological diagram of the groups discussed in the book. In addition, there is a scene-setting timeline of world history and art history from 1848 to 1944, overflowing with invaluable information and illustrated with twenty-four color reproductions.

Students, specialists, and casual art lovers will all find ArtSpoke an essential addition to their reference shelves and a welcome companion on visits to museums and galleries.

Read more