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A Passion for Performance
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A Passion for Performance
Sarah Siddons and Her Portraitists
Edited by Robyn Asleson
Essays by Robyn Asleson, Shelley Bennett and Mark Leonard, and Shearer West

J. Paul Getty Museum
144 pages, 9 x 11 inches
43 color and 68 duotone illustrations
ISBN 978-0-89236-556-2
hardcover, Out of Stock Indefinitely  ISBN 978-0-89236-557-9
paper, Out of Stock Indefinitely  1999

"One of the great art books of our time."
Sheridan Morley, The Arts Programme, BBC Radio 2

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Renowned for her majestic beauty and impassioned performances, the English actress Sarah Siddons (1755-1831) revolutionized the aesthetics of eighteenth-century theater while inventing a complex public persona to promote her fame. Her flair for self-presentation was matched by the showmanship of the many artists who portrayed her.

A Passion for Performance features three lively essays—by Robyn Asleson, Shelley Bennett, Mark Leonard, and Shearer West—that explore Siddons's life and career, as well as her relationships with a number of artists. Most notable among them was Sir Joshua Reynolds, whose masterpiece, Sarah Siddons as the Tragic Muse—now in the Huntington Art Collections—became an indelible icon of this great actress at the peak of her career. This lavish volume brings together fifty-five other portraits of Siddons including works by Thomas Gainsborough, George Romney, Thomas Lawrence, and Gilbert Stuart, along with a chronology of the actress' life.

Robyn Asleson is research associate at the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Her most recent book is Albert Moore: The Analysis of Beauty. Shelley Bennett is curator of British and European art at the Huntington, and the author of Thomas Stothard: The Mechanisms of Art Patronage in England circa 1800. Mark Leonard is conservator of paintings at the Getty Museum, and coauthor of Looking at Paintings. Shearer West is senior lecturer and head of the Department of History of Art at the University of Birmingham. She is the author of Image of the Actor: Verbal and Visual Representation in the Age of Garrick and Kemble.

This title is out of stock indefinitely. Please look for it at your local libraries and/or used bookstores.

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