John Ott is Associate Professor of Art History, James Madison University, USA.
Prize: Winner of a College Art Association Wyeth Foundation for American Art Publication Grant 'This is the most important book on Gilded Age art patronage written in years. This fascinating book offers a much-needed alternative perspective on American art and patronage of the late 19th century. By exploring how the Gilded Age unfolded in the land of gold - California - John Ott mines a rich history indeed, at once regional and cosmopolitan. Ott brilliantly illuminates the emergence of a broader, national network of corporate culture-brokering, to which artists often tailored their work or had it tailored for them, in some cases seriously complicating assumptions about artistic authorship and originality. Ott's study is social art history at its best.' Alan C. Braddock, College of William & Mary, USA 'One thing is for certain, Ott's book is a worthy successor to Burns' study, and it should have a similarly galvanizing effect on the field.' CAA Reviews 'Ott's book is not only an impressive study of art patronage and social class in Gilded Age California, but also a model for historians seeking to explore other Art Worlds, as Becker defined them, in the Nineteenth Century, the United States, and beyond.' Panorama 'Academic works should provoke, and Ott drives his interpretations to the limit in Manufacturing the Modern Patron in Victorian California. Judging from his intense writing and clever titles, Ott's classes at Virginia's James Madison University will never lack lively discussion.' Western Historical Quarterly