It's a rarity that I ever receive anything other than the most mundane of press releases from local galleries and museums.
Not because the work being exhibited is mundane.
Far from it.
Press releases are generally bare bones things, with just the What When and Wheres addressed. Boring at best, wastes of paper (digital or the stuff from trees) at worst.
Author of books with smart titles like American Expressionism, Art and Social Change, 1920-1950 and Idols of Perversity: Fantasies of Feminine Evil in Fin de-Siecle Culture, Dijksa is a professor emeritus of comparative literature and cultural history at UC San Diego, so it's a safe bet he'll be well-informed and interesting.
Then I stumbled over and upon the following intriguing words:
more than four hundred color illustrations
male and female nude
... and a tidy description that settled any doubts:
"In chronological and thematic order, the book demonstrates the links between the work of some of the most famous names in the history of American painting..sculpture...and photography..., and that of the outlaw hordes of cartoonists, book-cover illustrators, and visual extremists who, particularly during the last half-century, were able to turn the United States into the world's principal purveyor of erotic fantasies."
If you like this story, consider signing up for our email newsletters.
SHOW ME HOW
You have successfully signed up for your selected newsletter(s) - please keep an eye on your mailbox, we're movin' in!
Anything that flips a finger at our Puritan ancestors is worth my time, as well as--I hope--yours.
Well played, Laguna Art Musuem. Well played.
Afterward, I had a cigarette, and hoped--yes, hoped, gentle readers--that Laguna or the publishers would send me a reviewers copy so that I might...well...review it.
Bram Dijkstra will be talking about--and autographing--his new book Naked: The Nude in America at Laguna Art Museum, 307 Cliff Drive, Laguna Beach, this Sunday, November 14 at 1:00 p.m.. Books are a hefty $75.00--they make great stocking stuffers!--and will be on sale at the event. Free for Museum Members and included in the paid admission price for non-members. For more information, call 949-494-8971.