Concise, critical reviews of books, exhibitions, and projects in all areas and periods of art history and visual studies

Reviews in caa.reviews are published continuously by the College Art Association (CAA) and Taylor & Francis, with the most recently published reviews listed below. Browse reviews based on geographic region, period or cultural sphere, or specialty (from 1998 to the present) using Review Categories in the sidebar, or by entering terms in the search bar above.

Recently Published Reviews

Peter Fuhring, Louis Marchesano, Rémi Mathis, and Vanessa Selbach, eds.
Exh. cat. Los Angeles and Paris: Getty Publications in association with Bibliothèque nationale de France , 2015. 344 pp.; 51 color ills.; 138 b/w ills. Cloth $80.00 (9781606064504)
Exhibition schedule: Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles, June 16–September 6, 2015; Bibliothèque nationale de France, November 2, 2015–January 31 2016 (under the title Images du Grand Siècle: l’estampe française sous Louis XIV, 1660–1715)
This review will examine the exhibition of French prints at the Getty Research Institute from June to September 2015, and its companion volume, A Kingdom of Images: French Prints in the Age of Louis XIV. There is some divergence between the contents of the exhibition and the book, which is not strictly speaking a catalogue: the grouping of subjects in the exhibition differs somewhat from the arrangement in the volume, while some images in the exhibition are not featured in the book,... Full Review
July 28, 2016
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Laura M. Giles, Lia Markey, and Claire Van Cleave
Exh. cat. Princeton: Princeton University Art Museum, 2014. 364 pp.; 370 color ills.; 40 b/w ills. Cloth $65.00 (9780300149326)
Exhibition schedule: Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton, January 25–May 11, 2014; Cantor Arts Center, Stanford University, Stanford, May 22–August 24, 2015
The tradition of university art museums forming excellent collections, which began in Europe with the Ashmolean and Fitzwilliam in England and Erlangen University in Germany, has flourished in the United States. Second only to the Harvard Art Museums, the Princeton collection of Italian drawings is of great importance, and in many respects is better than the majority of important civic museums. It includes some outstanding Renaissance drawings by Carpaccio, Michelangelo, Parmigianino, and... Full Review
July 28, 2016
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Nancy Hoffman, Frank Verputten, and Robbert Roos
Exh. cat. Amsterdam: KIT Publishers, 2012. 144 pp.; 76 color ills. Paper $35.00 (9789460222115)
Exhibition schedule: Kunsthal KAdE, Amersfoort, Netherlands, May 25–August 26, 2012
The eponymous catalogue to the exhibition Who More Sci-fi Than Us?: Contemporary Art from the Caribbean aims to examine the complexity of Caribbean art through the metaphor of science fiction. Curator of the exhibition and co-founding director until 2011 of the Instituto Buena Bista, Curacao Center for Contemporary Art in the Dutch Caribbean, Nancy Hoffman writes in the introduction that the logic of the Caribbean is perfectly captured in Junot Díaz’s The Brief and Wondrous Life of... Full Review
July 21, 2016
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Valérie Rousseau
Exh. cat. New York: American Folk Art Museum, 2015. 136 pp.; 83 color ills.; 17 b/w ills. Cloth $30.00 (9780912161242)
Exhibition schedule: American Folk Art Museum, New York, New York, March 26–July 5, 2015
In the American Folk Art Museum’s exhibition catalogue When the Curtain Never Comes Down: Performance Art and the Alter Ego, curator Valérie Rousseau highlights the creative expressions and artistic practices of twenty-six individuals and one religious community. With selections that span the late nineteenth century to the present, Rousseau succeeds in opening new discussions on objects and related performative actions of artists referred to as “self-taught” and “art brut.” A... Full Review
July 21, 2016
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Naomi Beckwith, Donatien Grau, and Jennifer Higgie
New York: Prestel, 2014. 136 pp.; 75 color ills. Cloth $39.95 (9783791349671)
A casual perusal of the monograph Lynette Yiadom-Boakye quickly establishes—in its ratio of image to text—the main objective of the book to be a celebration of the artist’s oeuvre rather than a critical engagement with it. Of the 136 pages in the slim, attractive volume, the substantive text amounts to less than fifty pages while more than fifty-five leaves are devoted to beautifully designed, full-page color reproductions, most of them featuring a single image of Yiadom-Boakye’s... Full Review
July 21, 2016
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William S. Rodner
Leiden: Brill, 2012. 240 pp.; 150 color ills. Cloth $128.00 (9789004220393)
In Edwardian London through Japanese Eyes: The Art and Writings of Yoshio Markino, 1897–1915, William S. Rodner presents the first scholarly monograph in English on Yoshio Makino (or “Markino,” as the artist romanized the spelling of his family name). There have been a few publications and exhibitions in Japan on this once popular illustrator in early twentieth-century London, but it is in Rodner’s book that one finds a detailed and engaging account of Markino’s most productive years... Full Review
July 14, 2016
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Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 2015.
Exhibition schedule: Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, August 14–December 6, 2015
It is safe to assume that museumgoers in San Francisco, home to the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA), are as up on new technology as any public, and that the Bay Area’s traditionally progressive inhabitants are invested in balancing commercial profit and social justice. Yet as the exhibition Earth Machines quickly reveals, the local Silicon Valley high-tech industry propels a cycle of innovation and consumption that threatens to outstrip our ability to understand and manage its... Full Review
July 14, 2016
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Billy Apple
Exh. cat. Auckland, NZ: Auckland Art Gallery, 2015.
Exhibition schedule: Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki, Auckland, NZ, March 14–June 21, 2015
Featuring work from 1960 through the present, Billy Apple®: The Artist Has to Live Like Everybody Else was one of the most significant survey exhibitions ever accorded a living New Zealand artist. Staged in the country’s largest public art museum, it gave institutional and public recognition to an extraordinarily complex and comprehensive individual practice, and demonstrated the importance of a Pop-Conceptualism nexus to the recent history of New Zealand art. The title of the... Full Review
July 14, 2016
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Mary Morton and George Shackelford, eds.
Exh. cat. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2015. 284 pp.; 150 color ills. Cloth $60.00 (9780226263557)
Exhibition schedule: National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC, June 28–October 4, 2015; Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, November 8, 2015–February 14, 2016
Co-organized by the National Gallery of Art and the Kimbell Art Museum, Gustave Caillebotte: The Painter’s Eye presents fifty canvases produced during the period when the artist was most directly engaged with the Impressionist group, between 1875 and the early 1880s. These were the years, according to curators Mary Morton and George Shackelford, when Gustave Caillebotte was at his best—when he was still living in Paris and closely connected with artists like Auguste Renoir and Edgar... Full Review
July 14, 2016
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Eva Díaz
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2015. 256 pp.; 20 color ills.; 58 b/w ills. Cloth $40.00 (9780226067988)
Art historian Eva Díaz’s The Experimenters: Chance and Design at Black Mountain College is a tightly focused examination of the activities of Josef Albers, John Cage, and R. Buckminster Fuller at Black Mountain College, North Carolina, during the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s. As Mary Emma Harris argues in her foundational history, The Arts at Black Mountain College (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1987), experimentation was integral to Black Mountain College’s pedagogical vision, and... Full Review
July 7, 2016
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