—A comprehensive survey of the 60 year career of a master of tempera painting, an artist who has been included in nine Whitney Museum of American Art Annual Exhibitions —80 color plates show off the brilliant light-infused compositions of Vickrey's paintings —Includes scholarly essays placing Vickrey in the context of the twentieth-century American art Robert Vickrey's unique vision and meticulous, painstaking technique have sustained him throughout a sixty-year career. He is widely considered to be a living master of using egg tempera, the same labor-intensive medium used by Renaissance painters, including Giotto and Cennini. But Vickrey's concerns are distinctly twentieth-century in the subjects and themes he has chosen, from childhood innocence to the dichotomy of urban versus country living. A quintessential Realist, Vickrey endeavoured to explore the human condition within a distinctively American environment, writes author Philip Eliasoph, whose essay argues that Vickrey's work builds a bridge from Surrealism and New Objectivity to Magic Realism. Described by the New York Times as the world's most proficient craftsman in tempera painting, [and] an immaculate technician, Vickrey's oeuvre is the fiercely independent work of one of its most unorthodox and even most daring inventors, according to Eliasoph.
Philip Eliasoph is a professor of art history at Fairfield University. Virginia M.Mecklenburg is Senior Curator of the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington, D.C.