Thursday, October 16, 2008

Book Review - Art: The Definitive Visual Guide

Art: The Definitive Visual Guide
Hardcover: 612 pages
Publisher: DK ADULT (October 20, 2008)


ART, the ultimate visual guide to 2,000 of the world's most revered paintings and sculptures, begins with a short section on how to look at paintings and sculpture, explaining the simple steps of formal analysis that swiftly become automatic and greatly increase and inform your enjoyment of art. The main part of the book is a 540-page chronological look at more than 700 artists. This section is subdivided into the main periods of art history with introductions to each period or art movement that explain the key elements and influences of the time. With several paintings by each major artist, this section is a joy to dip into or study in more depth. Key paintings are examined in detail to help you understand the artist’s intentions, style, and method. Thematic galleries are interspersed, showing how artists from different periods and places treat the same subject matter, such as landscape, nudes, or animals.


Even a non-arty type like me can appreciate a book that's not just a visual delight, but a visual guide to Art through the centuries. One can't help but admire the beautiful, glossy photographs of evergreen art which fill the pages of this massive tome. Art students and artists will surely find this book to be much much more.

From prehistoric times to current, from cave paintings to modern masterpieces, this book has detailed timelines and the styles and artists who dominated a particular era. One can learn how to 'read' composition, subject matter, technique and style as key paintings are examined in intricate detail to help one understand the artist's intentions, style and method. Picture-packed pages explore common themes such as landscapes, nudes and animals. And the comprehensive glossary and index makes searching a breeze and give an in-depth look at the delights contained within.

Buy the Book - here.
Visit the Publisher - here.

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