1st Edition

British Art and the Environment
Changes, Challenges, and Responses Since the Industrial Revolution

  • Available for pre-order. Item will ship after July 22, 2021
ISBN 9780367566487
July 22, 2021 Forthcoming by Routledge
272 Pages 20 Color & 37 B/W Illustrations

USD $150.00

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Book Description

This book explores the nature of Britain-based artists’ engagement with the transformations of their environment since the early days of the Industrial Revolution.

At a time of pressing ecological concerns, the international group of contributors provide a series of case studies which reconsider the nature-culture divide and aim at identifying the contours of a national narrative which stretches from enclosed lands to rising seas. By adopting a longer historical view, this book hopes to enrich current debates concerning art’s engagement with recording and questioning the impact of human activity on the environment.

The book will be of interest to scholars working in art history, contemporary art, environmental humanities, and British studies.

Table of Contents


Charlotte Gould & Sophie Mesplède

Part I: From the Claude Glass to Drones: Framing Environmental Encounters

  1. Vehicles of Truth: Portable Studios and Nineteenth Century British Landscape Painting, 1856–85
  2. Amy C. Wallace

  3. Painting Fog: James Abbott McNeill Whistler’s Blurred Visions of the London Atmosphere
  4. Laura Valette

  5. Aerial Ontologies
  6. Paul Cureton

  7. An interview with Tim Martin
  8. Part II: Areas of Outstanding Industrial Beauty? A Layered History of Re-Appropriation and Profitability

  9. "It’s grim up North.": Depicting Mutations and Shifting Perceptions of Industrial Landscapes in the North of England
  10. Aurore Caignet

  11. "Our oil." Our waves?: Environment, Energy Rransition and Art in Twenty-first Century Scotland
  12. Camille Manfredi

  13. Managing Arcadia. From the King’s Cross Estate to the Bretton Estate
  14. Pat Naldi

  15. An interview with Adrian George

Part III: Decentering human perception: art in a shared environment

9. Pursuing Natural Beauty: The Artist as a Hunter in Eighteenth Century Art

    Sophie Mesplède

10. "A new and unforeseen creation.": Turner, English Landscape and the Anthropo(s)cene

    Frédéric Ogée

11. The Human Landscape: John Ruskin, Drawing and Colour

    Thomas Hughes

12. A Matter of Time: Transformative Sculptures by Marc Quinn, Zuzanna Janin, Anya Gallaccio, and Andy Goldsworthy

    Kasia Ozga

13. Brexit, Gender and Northern Ireland’s Supernatural Landscape: Ursula Burke’s A False Dawn and Candida Powell-Williams’ Command Lines

Edwin Coomasaru


Stephen Daniels

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Charlotte Gould is Senior Lecturer in British Contemporary Art at Sorbonne Nouvelle, France.

Sophie Mesplède is Senior Lecturer in Eighteenth Century British Art at the University of Rennes 2, France.