Claudia DeMonte

Claudia DeMonte

  • Publish Date: 2009-09-01
  • Binding: Hardcover
  • Author: Eleanor Heartney

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Claudia DeMonte is an artist, a teacher, a curator, and a collector. She has given each of these simultaneous careers her unfailing attention throughout her adult life. To say she is accomplished in each field is an understatement; in fact, she has excelled in all and has managed to break new ground in each. She's a pioneer, a feminist, an acute observer, and an advocate for the overlooked.

This monograph of her career as an artist begins with her self-image works of the 1970sphoto essays, installations, T-shirtsfollowed by her painted pulp paper sculptures, works in clay, paintings, her Female Fetish series (pewter Milagros nailed onto wooden objects), fabric pieces and installations, drawings, and bronzes. The array of media she uses is not only eclectic, it's highly unusual. But DeMonte has never hesitated to jump in and use whatever feels right.

In each stage of her career, with each medium, she has combined sobering commentary on the status of women in the world with lighthearted humor. A paper sculpture might seem both hilarious and heartbreaking at the same time. An exquisitely beautiful bronze bowl will exude the power of a sacred object, with women poised at its edges not in the form of traditional goddesses but instead as ponytailed everywomen. Her installations examining questions such as What is real beauty? are joyful in their inclusion of images from all over the world, while they force us to confront our own misconceptions of global culture.

This book contains approximately 120 reproductions, with a foreword by Agnes Gund, president emerita of the Museum of Modern Art, and an essay by Eleanor Heartney, contributing editor to Art in America. It is the first retrospective of Claudia DeMonte's work, a long overdue review of one of America's most intriguing contemporary artists.

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