Lead in Modern and Contemporary Art

Lead in Modern and Contemporary Art

Sharon Hecker, Silvia Bottinelli
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Lead in Modern and Contemporary Art is the first edited volume to critically examine uses of lead as both material and cultural signifier in modern and contemporary art. The book analyzes the work of a diverse group of artists working in Europe, the Middle East, and North America, and takes into account the ways in which gender, race, and class can affect the cultural perception of lead. Bringing together contributions from a distinguished group of international contributors across various fields, this volume explores lead' s relevance from a number of perspectives, including art history, technical art history, art criticism, and curatorial studies. Drawing on current art historical concerns with materiality, this volume builds on recent exhibitions and scholarship that reconsider the role of materials in shaping artistic meaning, thus giving a central relevance to the object and its physicality.
This fascinating book concerns that alluringly contradictory element, lead. Malleable, easily melted, strikingly heavy, insidiously toxic, its threats and promises have attracted those sculptors committed to addressing what EmilyDickinson termed the "hour of lead". * Anne M. Wagner, Professor Emerita, University of California, Berkeley, USA * This important volume offers fresh ways of thinking about materiality in modern sculpture. Its wide-ranging explorations of artists' fascination with the physical substance and symbolic meanings of lead make for a genuinely intriguing and illuminating study. * Alex Potts, Max Loehr Collegiate Professor Emeritus, University of Michigan, USA *
Sharon Hecker is an art historian and curator specializing in modern and contemporary Italian art. A leading authority on Medardo Rosso, her books include A Moment' s Monument: Medardo Rosso and the International Origins of Modern Sculpture (2017), Postwar Italian Art History Today: Untying ' The Knot' (co-editor, 2018), and Finding Lost Wax: The Disappearance and Recovery of an Ancient Casting Technique and the Experiments of Medardo Rosso (2020). Silvia Bottinelli is Senior Lecturer in the Visual and Material Studies Department of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts University, USA. She is a widely published scholar of modern and contemporary art. Her recent books include Double-edged Comforts: Domestic Life in Modern Italian Art and Visual Culture (2021) and The Taste of Art: Cooking, Food, and Counterculture in Contemporary Practices (co-editor, 2017).