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Date & Time

Friday, March 6, 2020
6:00 PM

Location

Seminary Co-op Bookstore

Admission

Free and open to the public,

Contact

Seminary Co-op Bookstore
(773) 752-4381
events@semcoop.com

Description

Vanessa Schwartz discusses "Jet Age Aesthetic: The Glamour of Media in Motion." She will be joined in conversation by W. J. T. Mitchell. A Q&A and signing will follow the discussion.

At the Co-op

About the book: Vanessa R. Schwartz engagingly presents the jet plane’s power to define a new age at a critical moment in the mid-20th century, arguing that the craft’s speed and smooth ride allowed people to imagine themselves living in the future. Exploring realms as diverse as airport architecture, theme park design, film, and photography, Schwartz argues that the jet created an aesthetic that circulated on the ground below.

Visual and media culture, including Eero Saarinen’s airports, David Bailey’s photographs of the jet set, and Ernst Haas’s experiments in color photojournalism glamorized the imagery of motion. Drawing on unprecedented access to the archives of The Walt Disney Studios, Schwartz also examines the period’s most successful example of fluid motion meeting media culture: Disneyland. The park’s dedication to “people-moving” defined Walt Disney’s vision, shaping the very identity of the place. The jet age aesthetic laid the groundwork for our contemporary media culture, in which motion is so fluid that we can surf the internet while going nowhere at all.

About the author: Vanessa R. Schwartz teaches art history, history, and film at the University of Southern California, where she directs the Visual Studies Research Institute and the Graduate Certificate program.

About the interlocutor: W. J. T. Mitchell is the Gaylord Donnelley Distinguished Service Professor of English and Art History at the University of Chicago and editor of Critical Inquiry.