Transition: The London Art Scene in the Fifties (Paperback)
Author(s): Martin Harrison
Year published: 2002
Publisher Location: London
Total Pages: 192
Illustrations: Illustrated throughout
London in the 1950s was a city in transition. From its postwar bombsites and rolling smogballs at the beginning of the decade through to the packed movie theaters and Soho coffee shops at the end, London experienced a huge change in its attitudes. During this transitional period, a disparate group of artists formed, characterized by a sense of fun, brio, and a dash of genius. The socalled Independent Group of artists and designers living in London at this time-including Francis Bacon, Lucian Freud, and David Hockney-had in common a fascination with the American experience of the 1950s. American artists’ response to the new 50s American consumerism found fertile ground in London, and helped to shape modernist expression all over Britain.
This Transition: The London Art Scene in the 1950s book is a lively and entertaining account of how London artists, designers and architects of the time responded to the changing world around them with new forms based on mass media, collage, and new technology. With illustrations of the most important works of this period, and a multidisciplinary approach that sets the art scene in its wider social and cultural context, this is a book that evocatively captures the heterogeneity of London’s working artists, and the innovations they brought.