Public Monuments: Art in Political Bondage 1870-1997

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Reaktion Books, Dec 1, 1998 - Art - 236 pages
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Public monuments to significant individuals or to political concepts are all too familiar. But the notions underlying them are not so obvious. Sergiusz Michalski traces the history of the public monument from the 1870s, when erecting them became an artistic, political and social pre-occupation, to today when the distinction between public monuments and public sculpture is increasingly blurred.

The author shows how, in its golden age – up until 1914 – the public monument served the purpose of both education and legitimization. The French Third Republic, for example, envisaged the monument as a symbol of bourgeois meritocracy. In more recent decades, the public monument has been charged with the task of commemorating and symbolizing one of humankind's most terrible catastrophes - the Holocaust. Today, although the artistic failure of countless European war memorials has signaled the beginning of the demise of the public monument in the West, it continues to flourish elsewhere, commemorating despotic leaders from Kim Il Sung to Saddam Hussein.
 

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Contents

Preface
7
Democratic Statuomania in Paris
13
Bismarck and the Lure of Teutonic Granite
56
Memorials to the Great War
77
The Nazi Monuments
93
The Communist Pantheon
107
In Quest of a New Heroic Form
154
Invisibility and Inversion
172
Public Monuments in the Third World
190
Monuments in the 1990s and Beyond
201
References
213
Select Bibliography
227
Photographic Acknowledgements
237
Copyright

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Page 219 - Russian Sculpture and Lenin's Plan of Monumental Propaganda," in HA Millon and L. Nochlin, eds., Art and Architecture in the Sm/iceo/'Po/ir/cs (Cambridge, Mass, and London: MIT Press, 1978), 182-93; and C. Lodder, "Lenin's Plan of Monumental Propaganda,
Page 217 - Thomas Raff, DIE SPRACHE DER MATERIALIEN. ANLEITUNG ZU EINER IKONOLOGIE DER WERKSTOFFE, Munich, 1994, p.

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About the author (1998)

Sergiusz Michalski teaches art history at the University of Braunschweig, Germany. His previous books include The Reformation and the Visual Arts (1993) and The New Objectivity (1994).

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