Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: A world elsewhere : art colonies in California and New Mexico, 1900-1940
Author: Essen, Jennifer Michelle
ISNI:       0000 0004 5988 9887
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2016
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
This thesis analyses the distinct form of art colony that flourished in Carmel, California and Santa Fe and Taos, New Mexico, in the opening decades of the twentieth century. The diversity of people, experience and colony-produced art has largely discouraged analysis of western colonies as a group. My argument in this thesis is that new interpretive frameworks are needed to understand the defining and shared qualities of these colonies. Identifying patterns in seemingly disparate practices reveals the kind of colony this was, its features, its appeal and its influence on the artistic work of participants. I begin by charting the art colony tradition as it unfolded in the US and tracing the western art colony’s development out of this established model. Despite shared styles of sociality and retreat from urban America, the western art colony differed from its predecessors in its greater remoteness, particular style of community and opportunities for contact with Native and Spanish-speaking populations. In this they build on an established rhetoric of romantic otherness in these regions. Successive chapters explicate my definition of these colonies as networks of temporary association. Chapter Two explores the ways in which the colony’s community balanced a sense of belonging with opportunities for multi-directional movements, allowing art-colonists to control their engagement with the colony milieu. In Chapter Three I focus on Anglo-American art-colonists’ interactions with Native and Spanish-speaking peoples, specifically their formally experimental but problematic attempts to comprehend cultural difference. Chapter Four moves from intercultural to interpersonal interactions by exploring how these art colonies generated an arena for negotiating the intersections between gender and artistic autonomy. As improvisatory spaces these art colonies accommodated and even thrived on diversity and mutability. This thesis recovers western art colonies as important examples of collaborative artistic endeavour.
Supervisor: Floyd, Janet Melinda ; Howard, John De Velling ; Castillo Street, Susan Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available