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Book details
  • Genre:ART
  • SubGenre:Sculpture & Installation
  • Language:English
  • Pages:200
  • Format:Hardcover
  • Hardcover ISBN:9781667859620

The Art of Athena Tacha. A Complete Catalogue

by Richard E. Spear

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Overview
Although well known as a pioneer in site-specific sculpture in the early 1970s, Athena Tacha's art is much more varied and includes smaller sculptures, temporary installations, prints, drawings, video, film, photographic work, artist's books, web art, and many text-based conceptual pieces. Her body of more than two thousand works -- made of every conceivable material, from the artist's hair, breast and bowels, to sugar cubes, paper wasp nests, shattered automobile glass and cicada exoskeletons -- has never been catalogued before. In this richly illustrated volume, Syrago Tsiara, Director of the National Gallery, Athens, provides an insightful overview of Tacha's seventy-five years of exceptional creativity.
Description
Born in Greece in 1936, Athena Tacha was awarded an MFA in sculpture from the School of Fine Arts in Athens, an MA in art history from Oberlin College, and a PhD in aesthetics from the Sorbonne, Paris. Although well known as a pioneer in site-specific sculpture in the early 1970s -- she has won over forty public commissions from Alaska to Florida -- her art is much more varied and includes smaller sculptures, temporary installations, prints, drawings, video, film, photographic work, artist's books, web art, and many text-based conceptual pieces. Widely published and exhibited, and represented in some fifty museums, her body of more than two thousand works -- made of every conceivable material, from the artist's hair, breast and bowels, to sugar cubes, paper wasp nests, shattered automobile glass and cicada exoskeletons -- has never been catalogued before. In this richly illustrated volume, Syrago Tsiara, who co-curated the major traveling retrospective exhibition, Athena Tacha: From the Public to the Private, 2010, provides an insightful overview of Tacha's seventy-five years of exceptional creativity.
About the author
Richard Spear was educated in art history at the University of Chicago (B.A., 1961) and Princeton University (Ph.D., 1965). His research and publications have focused on seventeenth-century European art, ranging from a two-volume catalogue raisonné on Domenichino (1581–1641) to studies based on iconographic, psychoanalytic, feminist, and economic methodologies. He taught at Oberlin College from 1965 until 2000, where he also directed the Allen Memorial Art Museum (1972–83). He was appointed distinguished visiting professor at George Washington University in 1983–84 and held the Harn Eminent Scholar Chair at the University of Florida, Gainesville, in 1997–98. Since 1998, he has been distinguished visiting and affiliated research professor at the University of Maryland, College Park. Main publications and research • Caravaggio and his Followers, Cleveland Museum of Art, 1971, rev. ed., Harper & Row, New York, 1975 • Renaissance and Baroque Paintings from the Sciarra and Fiano Collections, The Pennsylvania State University Press and Ugo Bozzi, Rome, 1972 • Domenichino, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1982 • Domenichino, 1581-1641 (exhibition catalogue), Palazzo Venezia, Rome, 1996, pp. 163–69, 368-473 • The "Divine" Guido: Religion, Sex, Money and Art in the World of Guido Reni, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 1997 • From Caravaggio to Artemisia: Essays on Painting in Seventeenth-Century Italy and France, The Pindar Press, London, 2002 • Painting for Profit: the Economic Lives of Seventeenth-Century Italian Painters (with Philip Sohm), Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 2010 • Dipingere per profitto. Le vite economiche dei pittori nella Roma del Seicento, Campisano, Rome, 2016 • (editor) Visualizing the Universe: Athena Tacha's Proposals for Public Art Commissions 1972-2012, Grayson, Washington, D.C., 2017 • (editor) Fifty Years Inside an Artist's Mind: The Journal of Athena Tacha, Owl Press, Washington, D.C., 2020 • Caravaggio's 'Cardsharps' on Trial: Thwaytes v. Sotheby's, The Burlington Press, London, 2020 Spear's research on prices paid to painters in seventeenth-century Rome is a searchable online database administered by the Getty Research Institute. In addition to nearly 100 articles on Baroque art (see From Caravaggio to Artemisia: Essays on Painting in Seventeenth-Century Italy and France, pp. 601–06, for a complete bibliography through 2002), he has published studies on the European painting collection in the Prince of Wales Museum, Bombay, India, and written for the Times Literary Supplement, The Artnewspaper, The Washington Post, and The International Herald Tribune. He was editor-in-chief of The Art Bulletin from 1985 to 1988. Spear was art historian in residence at the American Academy in Rome in 1988. He received many research grants, including a post-doctoral Fulbright scholarship to Italy (1966–67), and fellowships from the American Council of Learned Societies (1971–72), the National Endowment for the Humanities (1980–81), the Center for Advanced Study in the Visual Arts of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C. (1983–84), the Guggenheim Foundation (1987–88), and the National Humanities Center (1992–93). Twice he won a residency at the Rockefeller Foundation's Bellagio Center (1996, 2007). In 1972 he was awarded the Daria Borghese Gold Medal for the best book of the year dealing with a Roman subject.
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