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Citizen Spectator – Art, Illusion, and Visual Perception in Early National America - North Carolina Scholarship Online
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Citizen Spectator: Art, Illusion, and Visual Perception in Early National America

Wendy Bellion


This book presents an exploration of illusionistic art in the early United States. It investigates Americans' experiences with material forms of visual deception and argues that encounters with illusory art shaped their understanding of knowledge, representation, and subjectivity between 1790 and 1825. Focusing on the work of the well-known Peale family and their Philadelphia Museum, as well as other Philadelphians, the book explores the range of illusions encountered in public spaces, from trompe l'oeil paintings and drawings at art exhibitions to ephemeral displays of phantasmagoria, “Invisi ... More

Keywords: illusionistic art, visual deception, Peale family, Philadelphia Museum, illusions, public spaces, trompe l'oeil paintings, phantasmagoria, Invisible Ladies

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2011 Print ISBN-13: 9780807833889
Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2014 DOI:10.5149/9780807838907_Bellion


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Wendy Bellion, author