‘Transitional Objects: Figurative Art after the Blitz’

Evaluating the work of multiple artists, photographers, and filmmakers working in London in the years immediately following the end of the Second World War, this project seeks to explain, for the first time, the persistence of figuration in British art as a set of distinctly visual and spatial responses to postwar reconstruction and the social conditions it engendered.  The period is described as a cultural historical process in which changes in the urban and social landscape motivated distinct forms of artistic production.  These social factors included the local experience of the decline of British Empire, changes in gender roles, and the rise of youth and gay subculture.  Each of these phenomena produced shifts in the cultural geography of London.  It is the visual mediation of this newly spatialized social life that the book elucidates.


Eric M Stryker is a visiting fellow at CRASSH, Easter 2014.

He received his  PhD in Art History from Yale University.  He is a scholar of modern and contemporary art, film, and photography, with particular interest in post-war Britain and Europe.  His research focuses primarily on the use of visual media as techné in reconfigurations of social identity and human geography.  His current book project is titled After the Blitz: Figuration and Social Space in Postwar London.  A recent conference paper delivered at Tate Britain was published in Tate Papers  as “Parallel Systems: Lawrence Alloway and Eduardo Paolozzi”.  He was also the recipient of the Metropolitan Museum’s Theodore Rousseau Fellowship, and co-curated the exhibition at the Yale Center for British Art.


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