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Twentieth-Century Sublimes The Turn from Modernism to Postmodernism: Barnett Newman, Agnes Martin, and Andy Warhol

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Title: Twentieth-Century Sublimes The Turn from Modernism to Postmodernism: Barnett Newman, Agnes Martin, and Andy Warhol
Author: Simpson, Albert
Department: School of Fine Art and Music
Program: Art History and Visual Culture
Advisor: Boetzkes, Amanda
Abstract: This thesis is an investigation of historical notions of the sublime and their culmination in both the “modern sublime” (demonstrated in the work of Barnett Newman and Agnes Martin) and the “postmodern sublime” (particularly through the practices of Andy Warhol). It addresses the historical development of the concept of the sublime, and the redistributions of that concept among Newman, Martin and Warhol. It also considers the roles of gender and sexual identity within sublime aesthetics. The thesis works with Fredric Jameson’s theorization of the relationship between the postmodern and late capitalism, as well as Caroline Jones’ account of the modern “egotistical” sublime and the postmodern “performative technological sublime,” to argue that postmodern practice was a response to the rigidities of modernism and formalist criticism. Finally, it clarifies, through some elements of their personal histories, the connections of the three artists within the New York art world and with each other.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10214/11550
Date: 2017-08


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