How did artists of the twentieth century use their work to respond to their unique personal experiences and moment in history? This provocative question is explored in this engaging new book on American art. By focusing on broad, defining themes, embodied in the work of such pivotal artists as Georgia O’Keeffe, Jackson Pollock, Robert Rauschenberg and Andy Warhol, the authors look at how art provided a means for reimagining America, visualising what it had become, and where it might go in a century of turbulent change.
Richly illustrated with nearly 400 colour images, Imagining America is organised around three main themes: nature and the ways diverse artists responded to the transformation of the landscape from pastoral to industrial; how artists as different as Thomas Eakins and Jackson Pollock demonstrated the perpetual inclination to reinvent both personal and national identity; and the ways that key artists like Stuart Davis, Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat taught us to understand the media and popular culture on a deeper level. The authors also provide a context of social history and parallel developments in American music and film.