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Art, Modernity and the Ideal Figure1089
Western art has long sought to find a perfect method of representing the body. At the same time as we have lost faith in the certainty of the modernist project, the perfect, straight, white body of modernism is now seen as fiction. But what sort of body will take its place? This work explores body images in visual culture, from revolutionary France to contemporary New York. It engages with artists' use of different kinds of body images in painting, sculpture, photography and film, and shows the centrality of the body in the work of artists from da Vinci to Manet, from Paul Strand to Kiki Smith. Also covered are the ways in which concerns about race, gender, sexuality, nation and technology are reflected in representations of the body and the body politic, from the paintings of David to the Vietnam veterans memorial.
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