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"Anselm Kiefer"

The winner of the 2002 Robert Motherwell Book Award is Anselm Kiefer (Harry N. Abrams, Inc.) by Daniel Arasse.

In making the award, the jury noted that in Daniel Arasse’s monograph Anselm Kiefer’s probing enterprise finds a splendidly apposite critic.  Kiefer’s art confronts large and disturbing issues, having to do with the relationship between art and reality, with history and memory, and with personal expression and public responsibility.   Arasse brings to it a vigorous and inquiring mind, shaped by the study of older art and the philosophical conditions of its making.  His exploration in this book of one artist’s engagement with the profound issue of aesthetic response to ethical challenge opens new perspectives on the expressive possibilities and ethical responsibilities of modern art.

Daniel Arasse is director of studies at the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris.  Previously he taught art history at the UniversitÈ de Paris-Sorbonne and served as director of the French Institute in Florence from 1982 to 1989.  He has written widely in the history, theory, and criticism of art.  His most recent books Include Le DÈtail: Pour une histoire rapproch6e de la peinture (1992); Le Sujet dans la tableau: Essais d’iconographie analytique (1997); Leonardo da Vinci: The Rhythm of the World (1998), and L’Annonciation italienne: Une histoire de perspective (1999).

Also listed by the jurors for special mention were the following two books:  Miguel Tamen’s Friends of Interpretable Objects (Harvard University Press); and Allan Antliff’s Anarchist Modernism: Art.  Politics, and the First American Avant-Garde (The University of Chicago Press).