Milton Avery by Robert Hobbs

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—The highly anticipated reprint of the artist's monograph that is still is considered the most comprehensive presentation of Avery's work —Included are many unfamiliar pieces, in oversize color plates that range in date from the early 1920s to 1963 —A detailed chronology of the artist's life is included and rounding out the volume are essays that explore Avery's career in detail, from the importance of Avery's wife Sally Michel, to the interaction-personal, artistic, and political-between him and his Abstract Expressionist colleagues Milton Avery chronicles the work of an artist who, although he did not become a serious, full-time painter until after he moved to New York at the age of 40, managed to carve out a unique position for himself in the art world over the next thirty-five years. A friend and colleague of the Abstract Expressionists who nevertheless maintained his commitment to representation, Avery was enormously important to several succeeding generations of artists and produced some of the most resonant and beloved images in American art history. Avery's work reflects the concerns he shared with the pioneer French modernists including Matisse, Dufy, and Picasso: saturated color in distinctly new combinations and an interest in retaining the two-dimensional character of the canvas. The combination allowed him to create a distinctly American brand of modernism.

About Robert Hobbs

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Robert Hobbs is an art historian who has taught at Yale and Cornell Universities. He is also the author of monographs on Robert Smithson and Edward Hopper. Hilton Kramer is a former critic of The New York Observer and former chief art critic of The New York Times.
Published November 15, 1990 by Hudson Hills. 264 pages
Genres: History, Arts & Photography. Non-fiction

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The New York Times

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Looking at the two paintings in the present show in which a scampering sandpiper plays a part, this critic remembered how deftly that little bird was evoked in one of Elizabeth Bishop's poems, and with what a spiky, onomatopoeic art that same poem was set to music by Elliott Carter.

Nov 09 1990 | Read Full Review of Milton Avery

Publishers Weekly

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Invitingly quirky and rich in subtle hues, the landscapes and other canvases of Milton Avery (1885-1965) made him America's closest approach to Matisse.

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