Color Problems: A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color

Emily Noyes Vanderpoel (Author) Keegan Mills Cooke (Editor)
& 1 more
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Description

Emily Noyes Vanderpoel (1842-1939) was an artist, collector, scholar, and historian working at the dawn of the 20th century. Her first and most prominent work, Color Problems: A Practical Manual for the Lay Student of Color, provides a comprehensive overview of the main ideas of color theory at the time, as well as her wildly original approaches to color analysis and interaction. Through a 21st century lens, she appears to stumble upon midcentury design and minimalism decades prior to those movements. Presenting her work as a painting manual under the guise and genre of flower painting and the decorative arts-- subjects considered "appropriate" for a woman of her time--she was able to present a thoroughly studied, yet uniquely poetic, approach to color theory that was later taken up and popularized by men and became ubiquitous in contemporary art departments. Her remarkable inventiveness shines in a series of gridded squares, each 10 x 10, that analyze the proportions of color derived from actual objects: Assyrian tiles, Persian rugs, an Egyptian mummy case, and even a teacup and saucer. Vanderpoel had a deep knowledge of ceramics and analyzed many pieces from her personal collection. She leaves her process relatively mysterious but what is clear, as historian and science blogger John Ptak notes, is that Vanderpoel "sought not so much to analyze the components of color itself, but rather to quantify the overall interpretative effect of color on the imagination".

Product Details

Price
$35.00  $31.50
Publisher
Sacred Bones Books
Publish Date
November 06, 2018
Pages
396
Dimensions
5.6 X 0.9 X 7.4 inches | 1.32 pounds
Language
English
Type
Paperback
EAN/UPC
9780999609934
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Emily Noyes Vanderpoel (1842-1939) was an artist, collector, scholar, and historian working at the dawn of the 20th century. Her work in color theory was decades ahead of it's time in design aesthetics and interpretation.
Keegan Mills Cooke is the founder of The Circadian Press; a publishing house, record label and printing press based in Brooklyn, NY. The press focuses on producing high quality printed matter for artists, musicians, and labels from around the world while the publishing and record label arm serve to resurrect a finely curated selection of art and music that have been heretofore overlooked.
Alan Bruton is an architect and design educator. Having a Master of Architecture from Cranbrook Academy of Art, his design and research practice is engaged in exploring relationships between material, procedural, formal, spatial, economic and other sociocultural issues in ongoing dialog with practitioners of diverse modes of cultural production.

Reviews

Capturing colored light and vanished impressions from a bygone era; hearing the thoughts buzzing inside a woman's patiently bended head; revealing the palimpsest layers of color theory's history; training the eye to see the old inside the new, the new inside the old -- those are indeed all wonderful things to ponder. -Printmag.com
Despite the history and visual wisdom detailed in her color guide, the tome never received the audience it deserved. - This is Colossal
The plates display an aesthetic decades ahead of its time.... her pared-down, geometric way of expressing color is nothing short of remarkable. - 'This Forgotten Female Artist Taught Us Everything We Know About Color', Surface Magazine
Drawing from nature, as well as her vast collection of objects, her research rings true even today and is an excellent guide for design lovers. - My Modern Met
It's something that people all over the world [can appreciate], ' Schaff says. '[It's] the kind of art where anyone who looks at it has an emotional experience. I feel like Emily Noyes Vanderpoel herself knew that back when she made it. - Medium
Color Problems' is very much a book for our time. - 'A New Life for a 1902 Manual on Color', The New York Times
A watercolorist of some reputation, Vanderpoel penned this exacting investigation of chromatic perception and the intricate kinship between colors decades before Josef Alber's landmark text Interaction of Color...Vanderpoel illustrated her treatise with over a hundred presciently modern grids, each of these Mondrian-like schemes demonstrating how, for instance, 'hues grade softly into one another from edge to heart, ' or how 'if two unbroken masses of the same quantity of strong color are put side by side the result may be unbearable - Bookforum (Feb/Mar 2019)