Jennifer Reynolds-Kaye: Small-Great Objects - Anni and Josef Albers in the Americas


Small-Great Objects provides an exemplary view on the art collecting practices of Anni and Josef Albers, two of modern art's most influential figures.
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Small-Great Objects presents a remarkable look into theart-collecting practices of two of modern art’s most widely influentialfigures, Anni (1899–1994) and Josef (1888–1976) Albers. Their impressivecollection of over 1,400 objects from Latin America, namely Mexico andPeru, represents a conscious endeavor that goes well beyond that of acasual hobby, displaying a deep appreciation for the art, textiles, andoverall ingenuity of the ancient American world. This insightful bookdraws on primary-source materials such as the couple’s letters, personalpapers, and archival photographs—many never before published—anddemonstrates their conviction that these Prehispanic objects displayed aformal sophistication and bold abstraction that defy the prevalentconception of the works as “primitive.” Moreover, it shows how theAlberses spread their appreciation of the ancient world to others,through their teachings, their writings, and their own art practices. 
Jennifer Reynolds-Kaye is the Lewis B. and Dorothy Cullman–Joan Whitney Payson Senior Fellow at the Yale University Art Gallery. Michael D. Coeis the Charles J. MacCurdy Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at YaleUniversity and Curator Emeritus at the Yale Peabody Museum of NaturalHistory.
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