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Anne Massey: Historians of British Art award

Anne Massey nominated for the Historians of British Art award

Manchester University Press has nominated historian Anne Massey (Professor in Design at Middlesex University) for the Historians of British Art award for her book Out of the Ivory Tower: The Independent Group and Popular Culture, published in Novemebr 2013. This is awarded by the Historians of British Art, which is affiliated to the College Art Association in the US. The results will be announced in Spring 2015.


The Independent Group included fine artists Magda Cordell, Richard Hamilton, Nigel Henderson, Eduardo Paolozzi and William Turnbull; architects Alison and Peter Smithson, James Stirling and Colin St John Wilson; graphic designer Edward Wright; music producer Frank Cordell; and writers Lawrence Alloway, Reyner Banham, John McHale and Toni del Renzio. This radical collective met at the ICA in London during the early 1950s, and worked with and within the new world of both the avant garde and popular culture.

The book features an in-depth discussion of the recent historiography of the Independent Group, and examines its history from an alternative perspective – that of popular culture. The themes of domestic space, Hollywood film, fashion, mass-circulation magazines, science-fiction and popular music are explored, broadening our general understanding.