Libri di Annie Cohen-Solal - libri Johan & Levi Editore

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Annie Cohen-Solal

author
Johan & Levi
Born in Algeria, obtained a doctorate in French literature at the Sorbonne. She has teached at the Univerities of New York, Berlin, Jerusalem and Paris XIII and taught at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales in Paris. She arrived in New York in 1989 as cultural advisor at the French embassy and was prompted by a meeting with Leo Castelli to develop an interest in contemporary art. The French edition of Leo & C. was awarded the Artcurial Prize for the best book on contemporary art in 2010. She is author of the biography Sartre: A Life (1986), bestseller translated into sixteen languages. In 2009 she was awarded the Legion of Honor. She spends her time between New York, Paris and Cortona.

Author's books

Paris, 1 July 1867, the inauguration of the Universal Exposition. With the end of the American Civil War, the landscape painters, members of the first authentic American school, returned to Europe convinced that they deserved praise, prizes and medals. Rather than acclaim, however, it was bitter humiliation that awaited them. The French critics shattered their dreams of glory with cruel, sarcastic comments on the large canvases crammed with majestic waterfalls, age-old trees and boundless horizons, pouring scorn on the best that a nation eager to assert itself in the arts as in the economic field had to offer. The American exhibition, said the French, “is unworthy of the sons of Washington … young and crude, in the midst of our old cultures it gives the impression of a giant lost in a dancehall”. The unexpected humiliation led first of all to self-examination and criticism. Why was the land of Melville and Poe unable to produce painters with the expressive power of its greatest writers? What should the painters of a young nation do to earn the respect of the Old World? Was it possible to bridge the abyss between them and European art? For the time being there was no choice. They were forced to bow to the tastes of the French, the undisputed arbiters of world painting. In actual fact, the Parisian failure of 1867 became a stimulus that prompted the “sons of Washington” to transform the defeat suffered into a challenge. American painters set off for France in their hundreds and settled in Paris, where they attend the course of masters like Gérôme and Cabanel. They then founded new “colonies” of artists, like the legendary one at Pont-Aven in Brittany. The success of the greatest amongst them, including Whistler, Sargent and Cassatt, paved the way for a host of others. Backed at home by the colossal resources of philanthropists and patrons of the arts as well as extraordinary museums such as the MoMA in New York, they succeeded in surpassing Paris in the space of two generations and making America the new home of art, the pulsating centre of world painting that was also to attract renowned French artists. The epic tale of American painters recounted by Cohen-Solal moves from Paris to New York, Giverny to Chicago and Pont-Aven to Taos. The turning point came with the 1948 Venice Biennial and the first-ever exhibition in Europe of eight canvases by a largely unknown artist, namely Jackson Pollock, soon to be acclaimed all over the world as the first absolute master of American painting.
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Americani per sempre

I pittori di un mondo nuovo: Parigi 1867 - New York 1948

Annie Cohen-Solal

pages: 500 pages

Paris, 1 July 1867, the inauguration of the Universal Exposition. With the end of the American Civil War, the landscape painters, members of the first authentic American school, returned to Europe convinced that they deserved praise, prizes and medals. Rather than acclaim, however, it was bitter humiliation that awaited them. The French critics sha
Leo Castelli insisted that he was not an art dealer but a gallery owner. For his artists he was a lot more: a patron of the arts. From the opening of his first gallery in 1957 to his death in 1999, Castelli dominated the cultural life of New York and elevated the status of the American artist, which came to dominate the international artistic panorama during those years. The figure of the multifaceted gallery owner was born with him. A businessman and tireless explorer in constant pursuit of new discoveries, he was ready to run risks and use the most effective commercial strategies in order to make his protégés known. Together with Ileana Sonnabend, his former wife and close ally, Castelli encouraged budding talents and championed their cause with museums. Through a vast network of international relations he reinvented the rules of the art market and revolutionized the artistic culture. The discovery of Jasper Johns, his “hero”, and the triumph of Robert Rauschenberg at the 1964 Venice Biennial were just two of his early successes followed by a host of other revelations – including Frank Stella, Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, James Rosenquist and Cy Twombly – that confirm his role as a creator of legends. But who was Leo Castelli, the man who waited fifty years to open his first gallery? A man of multiple identities is concealed behind the charisma of an affable, media-friendly European. Born in Trieste in 1907 to Jewish parents, he spent his first thirty years in major European cities such as Vienna, Milan, Budapest, Bucharest and Paris. His professional trajectory began with a daring flight to the New World to escape the dramatic political and social context of the Nazi racial laws and the horrors that were to follow. Annie Cohen-Solal embeds the roots of her biography in the distant past of the Castelli family, tracing their ancestors in the Tuscany of the Renaissance and reconstructing a history rife with persecutions, wars, breaks and upheavals that shows surprising similarities with the family’s more recent past and Leo’s own life. By an ironic twist of fate, a man who was always reticent about his Jewish identity found in the Jewish Museum, after the MoMA, the institution that was to consecrate him as a champion of the great American movements – from Pop Art to Conceptual Art – that are the formidable legacy of Leo Castelli.
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Leo & C.

Storia di Leo Castelli

Annie Cohen-Solal

pages: 464 pages

Leo Castelli insisted that he was not an art dealer but a gallery owner. For his artists he was a lot more: a patron of the arts. From the opening of his first gallery in 1957 to his death in 1999, Castelli dominated the cultural life of New York and elevated the status of the American artist, which came to dominate the international artistic pano
 

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