Russell Lynes

Russell Lynes

Russell Lynes (Joseph Russell Lynes, Jr.) December 2, 1910 – September 14, 1991) was an American art historian, photographer, author and managing editor of Harper's Magazine.

Born in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, Lynes was the elder son of Adelaide (Sparkman) and Joseph Russell Lynes."Russell Lynes, 80, an Editor and Arbiter of Taste" by Richard Severo, September 16, 1991, New York Times [ online] retrieved February 18, 2008 obituary] His younger brother was the photographer George Platt Lynes.

He was graduated from Yale in 1932 and married Mildred Akin, a Vassar graduate, in 1934. He started as a clerk at Harper & Brothers, the publishing house, from 1932 to 1936 and was director of publications at Vassar in 1936 and 1937. He then took a job at the Shipley School in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, where he was assistant principal from 1937 to 1940, then principal until 1944. He then joined Harper's Magazine as an assistant editor and became managing editor in 1947, a position he would hold for the next twenty years.

He died in New York City at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center.


*"Highbrow, Lowbrow, Middlebrow" (1949)
*"Snobs" (1950)
*"Guests" (1951)
*"The Tastemakers" (1954)
*"A Surfeit of Honey" (1957) [ "WE ADORE self-appointed scolds who tell us what shallow characters we are. Here is Mr. Lynes casting us as History's Spoiled Children. We have it too good, he says." [ Commentary Magazine] ]
*"Cadwallader: A Diversion" (1959)
*"The Domesticated Americans" (1963)
*"Confessions of a Dilettante" (1966)
*"The Art-Makers of Nineteenth Century America" (1970)
*"Good Old Modern; an intimate portrait of the Museum of Modern Art" (1973) [ [ New Criterion discussion of some of the issues that are fully discussed in "Good Old Modern"] ]
*"More than meets the eye: The history and collections of Cooper-Hewitt Museum, the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Design" (1981)
*"The Art Makers: An Informal History of Painting, Sculpture & Architecture in Nineteenth Century America " (1983)
*"The Lively Audience: A Social History of the Visual and Performing Arts inAmerica, 1890-1950." (1985)
*"At the waters edge: 19th & 20th century American beach scenes" (1989)
*"Life in the Slow Lane" (1991)


External links

* [ Harper's Magazine (Index of Writings)]
* [ Portrait of Russell Lynes]
* [ Bio]
* [ "Highbrow, Lowbrows, Middlebrow, Now: An Interview With Russell Lynes by John Brooks", "American Heritage", 1983]

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