The 19th-century steam railway epitomized modernity's relentlessly onrushing advance. Ian Carter delves into the cultural impact of the train. Why, for example, did Britain possess no great railway novel? He compares fiction and images by canonical British figures (Turner, Dickens, Arnold Bennett) with selected French and Russian competitors: Tolstoy, Zola, Monet, Manet. He argues that while high cultural work on the British steam railway is thin, British popular culture did not ignore it. Detailed discussions of comic fiction, crime fiction, and cartoons reveal a popular fascination with railways tumbling from vast (and hitherto unexplored) stores of critically overlooked genres.
Turner was deeply affected by the world in which he lived, the sciences that explained it, and the conflicts and accomplishments of his society. He wove these strands into the dense fabric of the historical pictures he created, pictures that were extremely varied, complex, original, and controversial. In Angel in the Sun Gerald Finley untangles the various thematic strands running through Turner's art, including the intersection of private and public histories, classical and biblical history and contemporary events, and science and religion, and shows how Turner's use of light and colour played an important role in conveying these ideas. Angel in the Sun includes over 130 illustrations in colour and black and white that reveal Turner's remarkable achievement as a painter of historical subjects. Because of its interdisciplinary nature, the book will appeal not only to art historians and landscape theorists but also to historians of science and literature.
Humankind has a special relationship with rain. The sensory experience of water falling from the heavens evokes feelings ranging from fear to gratitude and has inspired many works of art. Using unique and expertly developed art-historical case studies – from prehistoric cave paintings up to photography and cinema – this book casts new light on a theme that is both ecological and iconological, both natural and cultural-historical. Barbara Baert’s distinctive prose makes Looking Into the Rain. Magic, Moisture, Medium a profound reading experience, particularly at a moment when disruptions of the harmony among humans, animals, and nature affect all of us and the entire planet. Barbara Baert is Professor of Art History at KU Leuven. She teaches in the field of Iconology, Art Theory & Analysis, and Medieval Art. Her work links knowledge and questions from the history of ideas, cultural anthropology and philosophy, and shows great sensitivity to cultural archetypes and their symptoms in the visual arts.
A new way of looking at the relationship between man and nature is necessary as conventional approaches to nature conservation are failing. Maltzahn shows alternative ways of understanding drawing on evidence from philosophy and the history of science (phenomenology, visual thinking, Gestalt psychology)
From the author of "Celestial Sleuth" (2014), yet more mysteries in art, history, and literature are solved by calculating phases of the Moon, determining the positions of the planets and stars, and identifying celestial objects in paintings. In addition to helping to crack difficult cases, these studies spark our imagination and provide a better understanding of the skies. Weather archives, vintage maps, tides, historical letters and diaries, military records and the assistance of experts in related fields help with this work. For each historical event influenced by astronomy, there is a different kind of mystery to be solved. How did the changing tides affect an army's battle plans? How did the phases of the moon affect how an artist painted a landscape? Follow these exciting investigations with a master “celestial sleuth” as he tracks down the truth and helps unravel mysteries as far back as the Middle Ages and as recent as the iconic 1945 photograph of a kiss in Times Square on VJ Day. Topics or "cases" pursued were chosen for their wide public recognition and intrigue and involve artists such as Vincent van Gogh and Claude Monet; historical events such as the campaigns of Braveheart in Scotland and battles in World War II and the Korean War; and literary authors such as Chaucer, Cervantes, Shakespeare, Byron, and Edgar Allan Poe.
Speed, the sensation one gets when driving fast, was described by Aldous Huxley as the single new pleasure invented by modernity. The Speed Handbook is a virtuoso exploration of Huxley’s claim. Enda Duffy shows how the experience of speed has always been political and how it has affected nearly all aspects of modern culture. Primarily a result of the mass-produced automobile, the experience of speed became the quintessential way for individuals to experience modernity, to feel modernity in their bones. Duffy plunges full-throttle into speed’s “adrenaline aesthetics,” offering deft readings of works ranging from F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, through J. G. Ballard’s Crash, to the cautionary consumerism of Ralph Nader. He describes how speed changed understandings of space, distance, chance, and violence; how the experience of speed was commodified in the dawning era of mass consumption; and how society was incited to abhor slowness and desire speed. He examines how people were trained by new media such as the cinema to see, hear, and sense speed, and how speed, demanded of the efficient assembly-line worker, was given back to that worker as the chief thrill of leisure. Assessing speed’s political implications, Duffy considers how speed pleasure was offered to citizens based on criteria including their ability to pay and their gender, and how speed quickly became something to be patrolled by governments. Drawing on novels, news reports, photography, advertising, and much more, Duffy provides a breakneck tour through the cultural dynamics of speed.
Short introduction with over 100 paintings highlighting the revolutionary approach by Turner whose powerful sweeping strokes turned away from portraiture and prepared the way for Impressionism. The English Romantic painter Joseph Mallord William Turner (23 April 1775–19 December 1851) was a brilliant landscape artist, a watercolourist and printmaker. His style, powerful and fierce, melding the elements with humankind are thought by many to have prepared the way for Impressionism. In his time he was controversial, but his focus on land and seascapes widened the palette of artists and their audience, and his impressionistic brushwork prepared the way for the fragmentation of the modern era. This wonderful new book brings to life his greatest achievements, with such paintings as The Fighting 'Temeraire’, Inside Tintern Abbey and Rain, Steam and Speed (The Great Western Railway).
Beyond the Image Machine is an eloquent and stimulating argument for an alternative history of scientific and technological imaging systems. Drawing on a range of hitherto and marginalised examples from the world of visual representation and the work of key theorists and thinkers, such as Latour, de Certeau, McLuhan and Barthes, David Tomas offers a disarticulated and deviant view of the relationship between archaic and new representations, imaging technologies and media induced experience. Rejecting the possibility of absolute forms of knowledge, Tomas shows how new media technologies have changed the nature of established disciplines. The book develops Tomas's own theory of transcultural space and makes several original contributions to current debates on the culture of advanced technology.