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Baroque between the Wars: Alternative Style in the Arts, 1918-1939 (Hardback)
  • Baroque between the Wars: Alternative Style in the Arts, 1918-1939 (Hardback)

Baroque between the Wars: Alternative Style in the Arts, 1918-1939 (Hardback)

Hardback 336 Pages / Published: 11/01/2018
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Baroque between the Wars is a fascinating and new account of the arts in the twenties and thirties. We often think of this time as being dominated by modernism, yet the period saw a dialogue between modern baroque - eclectic, playful, camp, open to influence from popular culture yet in dialogue with the past, and unafraid of the grotesque or surreal - and modernism, which was theory-driven, didactic, exclusive, and essentially neo-classical. Jane Stevenson argues that both baroque and classical forms were equally valid responses to the challenge of modernity, by setting painting and literature in the context of 'minor arts' such as interior design, photography, fashion, ballet, and flower arranging, and by highlighting the social context and sexual politics of creative production. Accessibly written and generously illustrated, the volume focuses on artists, artefacts, clients, places, and publicists to demonstrate how baroque offered a whole way of being modern which was actively subversive of the tenets of modernism and practised by the people modernism habitually defined as not worth listening to, particularly women and homosexuals.

Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780198808770
Number of pages: 336
Weight: 714 g
Dimensions: 241 x 162 x 24 mm

Learned and thought-provoking ... Stevenson has encyclopaedic knowledge of the period and the style, in all its many forms. The book covers a glorious array of cultural activities ... from architecture, painting, literature and dance through to Anglo-Catholicism, flower arranging and the predilection for unusual interiors ... Stevenson writes with gentle humour and a keen sense of the absurd. * Adrian Tinniswood, Literary Review *
exceptional * Clive Aslet, Country Life *
A fascinating, thought-provoking account of the arts in the 1920s and 1930s * The Tablet *
Broad in scope, yet full of telling detail, this important study of the Baroque sensibility brilliantly illuminates a too-long-neglected era of artistic and cultural activity. * Stephen Calloway, author of Baroque Baroque: The Culture of Excess *
Stevenson's achievement is baroque in its richness and variety. Spanning the art forms, and bringing to new prominence the period's decorative taste-makers from Cecil Beaton to Elsa Schiaparelli, she turns a serious eye on the meanings of masquerade. The emphasis on art markets and circles of patronage contributes a wealth of new material to this thick-woven tapestry of ideas. * Alexandra Harris, Department of English Literature, University of Birmingham *
With the scholarship, humanity, and wit that made her Edward Burra biography so outstanding, Jane Stevenson presents a shimmering bouquet of connected essays, animating the ghosts of early twentieth-century fashion and frolic, that propose a serious alternative to modernism. * Alan Powers *

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