New Book: "The Multicultural Modernism of Winold Reiss"
News from Feb 18, 2022
Prof. Dr. Frank Mehring, former faculty member in the JFKI Culture Department and professor of American Studies at Nijmegen University, has recently published the edited volume The Multicultural Modernism of Winold Reiss (1886–1953) with Deutscher Kunstverlag. The volume builds on an international symposium held at the JFK Institute a decade ago to commemorate the 125th anniversary of Reiss's birth. The conference program and further materials are still available in a dedicated section of our website.
The Culture Department congratulates Prof. Mehring on this wonderful achievement.
From the publisher's description of the book:
In a first, this anthology presents essays by art historians and cultural scientists from both sides of the Atlantic to rediscover, analyze and contextualize the rich and largely unknown art of Winold Reiss, opening up a new, previously untapped archive of multicultural Modernism. The German-American artist, who was born in Karlsruhe in 1886 and arrived in New York in 1913, defies instant categorization. With his dual background in fine arts and applied arts he set out to bridge the gulf between “high” and “low” art, introducing a bold use of color to the American art scene and to interior design. In his portraits Reiss captured the multi-ethnic diversity of the US. His specific blend of cultural otherness, primitivism, and depictions of ethnicity challenged the conventions of the time.