Making American Taste: Narrative Art for a New Democracy is a landmark publication on American art from 18251870. This beautifully illustrated volume reassesses narrative painting, and is a significant contribution to our understanding of taste and collecting in America during this period. It presents 55 paintings from 38 artists drawn from the New-York Historical Societys newly restored, and superb collection of narrative art, featuring themes including the rural and the domestic, as well as a broad range of historical, literary, and religious subject-matter.
American art at this time was dominated by powerful arguments about what constituted true art: should it be for the many, or the educated few, and should specifically American art forms and styles be favored over more traditional, academic, European traditions. Making American Taste looks at these issues through the work of both well-known artists, like Benjamin West, Asher B. Durand and Eastman Johnson, and less familiar names such as Daniel Huntington, Henry Peters Gray and Louis Lang.
Edited by Barbara Dayer Gallati. Contributions by Linda S. Ferber, Ella M. Foshay and Kimberly Orcutt
Hardcover, 324 pages