This is a useful and fun guide for travelers and art aficionados who want to experience New York’s legendary art scene.
While it is doubtful that any book could ever encompass the sprawling, hydra-headed NYC art world, Art and NYC is a successful introduction to a wealth of modern and contemporary artists and movements from the metropolis. One could use the book as a starting point every weekend for a year to visit museums, artist’s homes, galleries, and other spaces, and still not be done with the Sisyphean task of having seen it all.
The guide is knapsack-sized and packed with information and visual images, yet cleverly designed with generous margins and a dynamic layout for ease of use. It is also thematically arranged so that one could organize all kinds of self-directed art explorations: by artist, era, neighborhood, or artistic movement, or any combination in between.
It all starts with succinct histories of some of the art world’s most iconic images that reside in New York City, in various museums and collections, and as public works of art. They range from Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon to Robert Indiana’s outsized “LOVE” sculpture. Chapters offer lively biographies and stories about influential New York artists, from photographer Cindy Sherman, the chameleon-like artist who is famously her own muse and model, to the neo-Dadaist Robert Rauschenberg, whose career rocketed after art world elder Willem de Kooning agreed to let him completely erase one of his own paintings.
This volume is a fantastic launch pad for budding art historians and collectors. Imagine a New York art tour that includes morning gallery-hopping in Chelsea, grabbing lunch at Minetta’s Tavern, the favorite Beat hangout in Greenwich Village, and then spending a leisurely afternoon at the Brooklyn Museum viewing works like Judy Chicago’s feminist masterpiece The Dinner Party.
Prose is accessible, vibrant, and blissfully free of esoteric gallery-speak. Maps and photographs and reproductions of artwork are of high quality, even at thumbnail size.
Art and NYC is a useful and fun guide for travelers and art aficionados who want to experience New York’s legendary art scene, making it easy to tailor a culture-filled day, week, or year in the exciting city.
Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. No fee was paid by the author for this review. Foreword Reviews only recommends books that we love. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.