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A Century of Drawing: Works on Paper from Degas to LeWitt

Edited by Judith Brodie and Andrew Robison
Published 2001
316 pages

This catalog invites the study of a wide range of drawings made between the years 1900 and 2000—those that build on convention as well as those that defy it. Chosen from more than 4,000 works in or promised to the National Gallery of Art, these 140 selections map a varied course through the century. From the iridescent, soft-edged pastels of Edgar Degas to the black-and-white precision of Charles Sheeler, from the shock of Otto Dix to the Zenlike subtlety of Agnes Martin, draftsmanship in the 20th century continued to matter. Innovations, such as the collages of Georges Braque and Pablo Picasso, extended the parameters of what could be called a drawing and altered the direction of the medium. But whether artists adhered to traditional modes of expression or transformed them, David Smith’s judgment held true: “Drawings remain the life force of the artist.”

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