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The Medicine of Art
  • Bandtyp: Inbunden
  • Språk: Engelska
  • Utgiven: 202201
  • Antal sidor: 240
  • ISBN10:1501346873
  • ISBN13:9781501346873

The Medicine of Art

(Inbunden)
Beskrivning:

In 1901, the sculptor Augustus Saint-Gaudens proclaimed in a letter to Will Low, "Health-is the thing!" Though recently diagnosed with intestinal cancer, Saint-Gaudens was revitalized by recreational sports, having realized mid-career "there is something else in life besides the four walls of an ill-ventilated studio." The Medicine of Art puts such moments center stage to consider the role of health and illness in the way art was produced and consumed. It is the first study to address the place of organic disease-cancer, tuberculosis, syphilis-in the life and work of Gilded-Age artists. It demonstrates how well-known works of art were marked by disease, arguing that art itself functioned in medicinal terms for artists and viewers in the late nineteenth century. Not merely beautiful or entertaining objects, works of art could function as balm for the ill, providing relief from physical suffering and pain. Art did so by blunting the edges of contagious disease through a process of visual translation. In painting, for instance, hacking coughs, bloody sputum and bodily enervation were recast as signs of spiritual elevation and refinement for the tuberculous, who were shown with a pale, chalky pallor that signalled rarefied beauty rather than an alarming indication of death. Works of art thus redirected the experience of illness in an era prior to the life-saving discoveries that would soon become hallmarks of modern medical science to offer an alternate therapy.

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