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Cécile Whiting wins Smithsonian prize for book on L.A. Pop art

May 22, 2009 |  2:07 pm

Whiting Cécile Whiting, a professor of art history at UC Irvine, has won the 2009 Charles C. Eldredge Prize for Distinguished Scholarship in American Art for her book "Pop L.A.: Art and the City in the 1960s."

The prize is given out by the Smithsonian American Art Museum in Washington. Art-related books published in the last three years are eligible for consideration.

Whiting, who previously taught at UCLA for 15 years, said the idea for her book originated from a previously published work that focused on Pop art in New York.

"I wanted to shift toward L.A. and explore how artists became fascinated with the city and how they worked to create an image of it," the author told Culture Monster today.

She said that her book is intended to fill in historical background about the Pop art movement and to bring attention to artists who haven't received adequate recognition, such as Llyn Foulkes, Noah Purifoy and the feminist artists of L.A.'s Women's House.

The award comes with a $3,000 prize. "Pop L.A.: Art and the City in the 1960s" is published by the University of California Press and is available in hardback and paperback editions.

— David Ng

Photo: the jacket cover for Cecile Whiting's "Pop L.A.: Art and the City in the 1960s." Credit: University of California Press.