Panorama view of exhibition in Jedlitschka Gallery, Zurich.

Panorama view of exhibition in Jedlitschka Gallery, Zurich.

04 January 2014

Lisa Hunter: How-to for Art Communities Outside the 212

First published February 11, 2007

girl_gallery.jpg

"When NYC was Flyover Land for Collectors: Pollock's tale of how Halpert promoted her artists and snagged influential collectors, despite an initially indifferent public, could be read as a how-to for art communities outside the 212. And it's a cautionary tale for regional collectors who think their local artists have nothing to offer."


What! Heresy! Lisa Hunter, whose great book (and accompanying website) The Intrepid Art Collector, I have plugged before on Sharkforum, has a new post of interest. Hunter plugs ANOTHER author's book, The Girl With the Gallery: Edith Gregor Halpert And the Making of the Modern Art Market by Lindsay Pollock.

Let's let Hunter speak: "When I first picked up Lindsay Pollock's new book, The Girl with the Gallery, I figured it would be one of those insider-ish art-world books you have to be a New Yorker to care about. Boy, was I wrong.

The "girl with the gallery," Edith Halpert, is a little-remembered but hugely influential Greenwich Village art dealer who essentially created the market for American modern art. Back in the 1920s, when Halpert started her Downtown Gallery, American critics and collectors shunned their home-grown product. "Real" artists, in their view, came from Europe, not 8th Street. The scenario sounds exactly like the attitude non-New York artists have to deal with today.

Pollock's tale of how Halpert promoted her artists and snagged influential collectors, despite an initially indifferent public, could be read as a how-to for art communities outside the 212. And it's a cautionary tale for regional collectors who think their local artists have nothing to offer. "
Posted by Lisa Hunter at The Intrepid Art Collector

Another source of info on the book:
From Publishers Weekly
"Pollock, who reports on the art market for Bloomberg News, retrieves a uniquely American story: a plucky heroine escapes Russia with her parents, grows up in New York poverty and ends up owning one of the most influential and successful art galleries of the 20th century, one that virtually created the market for American art. Startlingly young when she embarked on her career in 1926, Edith Gregor Halpert (1900–1970) was one of the few gallery owners with an eye for the American avant-garde of the '20s, '30s and '40s. She recognized genius in Stuart Davis, made folk art trendy during the Depression and rescued from obscurity such classic artworks as Raphaelle Peale's After the Bath. She was prickly and often defensive, assertive and opinionated. These qualities brought her independence and financial security; they also led to loneliness and an ungraceful decline. Most interesting in Pollock's account are Halpert's difficult interactions with others in the business and with her artists, particularly Alfred Stieglitz and Georgia O'Keeffe. It's surprising that Halpert, who paved the way for women in a male-dominated field, is so little known today; this book is long overdue."

The book at Barnes and Noble, here

No comments: