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British Art Now: An American Perspective: 1980 Exxon International Exhibition
Contributions by Diane Waldman
Published in 1979
156 pages, fully illustrated
Softcover, 7.50 x 8.50 inches
Focusing on the emergence of a present but quiet revolution in British art, this international exhibition features eight artists that exemplify individual expression in their works. There is no codified movement present in the works of these international artists, but rather they are united through the pursuit of personal individuation. Each section highlights the work of a particular artist and is accompanied by images in color and black and white. In addition, a full-page portrait, short biography, a list of selected bibliography and exhibition history, and a text written by Diane Waldman introduces each artist. Waldman's perspective on these artists is also featured in the introductory essay to the catalogue.
Each of the eight artists in this exhibition has achieved a clarity of expression, each is determined to reinvestigate the premises of art, each is unwilling to compromise. Their resolve speaks well not only of themselves as individuals but of the state of British art today. Although they do not represent a single direction and each was selected exclusively on the basis of his own merits, they do share certain qualities in common. Generally, they eschew monumental size for its own sake, they reject the heroic posture. If their work is small it lacks preciosity; if large it remains related to the human dimension. The sense of intimacy despite large scale, characteristic of American painting of the 1950s, absent in much of 1960s art, is present again in the British art of the 1970s.