Man Ray: American Artist by Neil Baldwin

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Author
Neil Baldwin
Publisher
Random House Value Publishing, Incorporated
Date of release
Pages
0
ISBN
9780517051160
Binding
Hardcover
Illustrations
Format
PDF, EPUB, MOBI, TXT, DOC
Rating
4
35

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Man Ray: American Artist

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Book review

Man Ray is the quintessential modernist figure—painter, sculptor, objectmaker, and collagist; photographer, printmaker, and filmmaker; poet, essayist, and philosopher. One of the most important and enigmatic of the Surrealists who transformed the Paris art world during the ferment of the 1920s and beyond. Man Ray was a bundle of contradictions—a Dadaist who revered the Old Masters, an anarchist coddled by wealthy patrons, an obsessive documenter of his own works who was relentlessly determined to erase his personal history. Born Emmanuel Radnitsky, son of a Philadelphia garment worker and his strict, sharp-tongued wife, he grew up in Brooklyn, fled to Paris, and eluded ties with his family. Under the influence of his close friend Marcel Duchamp, Man Ray began creating works such as The Gift, a flatiron adorned with carpet tacks, and his mysterious rayographs of common and uncommon objects. His stormy love affairs were with some of the most fascinating women of his day—the poet Adon Lacroix, his first wife; the exotic chanteuse Kiki of Montparnasse; the photographer and actress Lee Miller. In the meantime, Man Ray came to know and photograph virtually every important figure in the arts on both sides of the Atlantic—personalities such as James Joyce, Coco Chanel, Gertrude Stein, Jean Cocteau, and Max Ernst. Driven to make his mark in as many art forms as possible, Man Ray bitterly struggled to win acceptance as a painter even as his skill as a photographer brought him worldwide acclaim. Man Ray: American Artist, enriched by previously unpublished material and the close cooperation of Juliet Man Ray, the artist’s widow, should stand for years to come as the definitive story of the life and times of one of the greatest of modern artists.


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