Picasso and American Art

Michael FitzGerald; With a chronology by Julia May Boddewyn

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An unprecedented examination of the history of American modern art through the work of its most influential forerunner

Many American artists throughout the 20th century designated Pablo Picasso as the central figure of the modern movement and defined their own artistic achievements through their absorption, critique, or rejection of his example. Picasso and American Art is a groundbreaking publication juxtaposing works by Picasso with the paintings, sculptures, and drawings created in response by an extremely diverse group of his contemporaries and successors, including Max Weber, Stuart Davis, Arshile Gorky, John Graham, Willem de Kooning, Jackson Pollock, David Smith,  Roy Lichtenstein, and Jasper Johns.

Based on extensive research, Michael FitzGerald’s text provides valuable new information on the fundamental role that Picasso played in the development of modern American art--both through his friendships with individual artists and through the dissemination of his evolving work. This book also documents, for the first time, the accessibility of Picasso’s work in the United States between 1911 and 1957 in exhibitions, collections, and publications through a comprehensive chronology.
This unique book is essential for anyone interested in either Picasso or American art of the 20th century.

Michael FitzGerald is associate professor in the Department of Fine Arts at Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut, and author of Picasso: The Artist’s Studio, also published by Yale University Press. Julia May Boddewyn is curator of a private art collection in New York.


San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (February 25 – May 28, 2007)

Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (June 17 – September 9, 2007)

Whitney Museum of American Art (September 28, 2006 – January 28, 2007)

“FitzGerald’s catalogue presents a wealth of new material and offers fresh insights into the dissemination of Picasso’s influence in the United States.”—Ann Landi, Art News

"In this groundbreaking and exhaustively researched study, FitzGerald takes measure of Picasso’s influence, serving up a feast of juicy art-world tales of fervent advocacy and outright hostility. . . . FitzGerald’s revelations remind us that Picasso remains a force to be reckoned with."—Booklist

"This work is a marvelous, carefully researched study of Picasso’s influence on some of the most significant American artists of the 20th century. . . . There is a generous supply of images presented with the text, and they are as successful as FitzGerald’s prose in illuminating the complexities of Picassos’ influence on these artists. Both as an exhibition guide and a coffee table book, this volume is outstanding and will appeal to those looking to learn more about these artists or who simply wish to have a handsome volume to look at and display."—Publishers Weekly

"For a thorough understanding of Picasso’s role in shaping American culture, get the catalog; you’ll find flesh on the bone there."—Mario Naves, New York Observer

"Pablo Picasso cast a long shadow that is deftly studied in Picasso and American Art."—Mary Abbe, Minneapolis Star Tribune

"[Contains] handsome reproductions and FitzGerald’s scholarly but readable essay."—Elsa Dixler, New York Times Book Review

"In a thoroughly researched and approachable study, FitzGerald scrutinizes a diverse group of American artists, focusing mainly on Weber, Davis, Gorky, Graham, de Kooning, Pollock, Smith, Lichtenstein, and Johns and their individual artistic dialogs with Picasso. . . . The handsome result is a unique addition to Picasso scholarship, with high-quality reproductions including rarely seen works. Highly recommended for all art collections."—Library Journal

"Pablo Picasso was such a large presence in 20th-century art that most other artists, including those working in the United States, could hardly help but be influenced by him in some way. This book . . . probes his impact on American painters, ranging from Stuart Davis to Jasper Johns to Louise Bourgeois."—Denver Post (named one of the 50 reads to wrap)

"A richly illustrated documentation of the debt Amreican artists owed to artist Pablo Picasso, who never set foot in the United States."—Nicholas A. Basbanes, Sunday Telegram (from Oh, there's no gift like tomes for the holdays)

“Michael FitzGerald has selected several key artists to illustrate the arc of Picasso’s influence on American artists. . . . Through careful analysis and illustration, FitzGerald illuminates Picasso’s direct influence on American art, and the American avant-garde. . . . The prose is intelligent, readable, meticulously researched, and offers new perspectives and precise glimpses into this important trajectory, which is compellingly presented as a cohesive story. . . . The color plates are gorgeous—lush, saturated in color, printed on strong, glossy stock—a feast. The reproductions of the artwork and their remarkable correspondences is reason enough to recommend this book.”—Ellen Howards, Art New England (Editor’s picks for Holiday Books)


“This is a stunning look at how artistic ideas ricochet.”—Toronto Globe and Mail (Gift Books)

"An important record of a series of marriages (inseminations?) that marked the twentieth century American art scene deeply."—David Gies, The Virginia Quarterly Review

"Important. . . . FitzGerald chronicles familiar territory with scholarly rigor, flashes of insight, and a clearly written text. . . . Highly recommended. All levels."—J.E. Housefield, Choice

Named a Best Book of 2006 by Amazon.com
ISBN: 9780300114522
Publication Date: October 25, 2006
Publishing Partner: Published in association with the Whitney Museum of American Art
400 pages, 9 1/2 x 12
150 b/w + 150 color illus.
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