The Chicago list in art and design is diverse--ranging from the Bronze Age to now, with core strengths in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. I seek dynamic studies that help shape these disciplines, challenge their methods, and prove valuable to readers in other spheres (e.g., history of science, media and communication, anthropology, philosophy). Offerings in a given year might include a volume that profoundly rethinks the origins of photography; a critique of contemporary culture’s endless fascination with the Sixties; and a book about fiber arts. Among the many recent standouts are The Ashtray, by filmmaker Errol Morris; The Art of Return: The Sixties and Contemporary Culture, by art historian James Meyer; and Notes and Methods, by the painter Hilma af Klint.
In ancient studies, I seek well-crafted books of history that engage the social, cultural, environmental, and political predicaments of archaic settlements the world over. Books that demonstrate the contemporary value of archaeology, heritage, cultural property, migration, and repatriation are always welcome.
Dylan J. Montanari is my colleague in these endeavors.