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Great Artists: The Lives of 50 Painters Explored Through Their Work Hardcover – May 1, 1998


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Product Details

  • Series: Annotated Guides
  • Hardcover: 112 pages
  • Publisher: DK ADULT (May 1, 1998)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 078942391X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0789423917
  • Product Dimensions: 13.9 x 10.8 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #292,491 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

A benchmark for intelligent, engaging nonfiction, this superbly designed book is written and illustrated with a lushness that takes the breath away. Robert Cumming is chairman of Christie's education department: he knows his art history. But he also knows how to seduce you with the sheer beauty of the material, and the well-placed pointer to telling details. Fifty double-page spreads cover artists from da Vinci and Rubens to Monet, Picasso, and Pollock. Each spread is a concentrated master-class on the life, the style, and the influence. Check out the luminous full-color reproductions of "Bacchus" and "The Conversion of St. Paul," then read the opening sentence above them--"One of the few great artists to have a criminal record, Caravaggio was violent, loutish, and frequently under arrest"--and see if you can resist the temptation to read on. Great Artists is a dream of a book that adults and their older children will fight over. (Ages 12 to adult) --Richard Farr

From School Library Journal

YA-Facts on 50 famous painters are presented in chronological order and accompanied by large, full-color reproductions of their best-known works. The individuals' impact on the art world and the techniques they used are explained and described in detail. The text includes quotes by critics, historians, the painters themselves, and other artists of the time. Observations and explanations are provided concerning the subject, paint techniques, purpose, and symbolism of each piece. Details of sections of the works are enlarged and analyzed. The index provides links not only to artists' names, but also to time periods, styles, and major works. With its open and inviting layout, this book has great browsing appeal.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By P. Crabtree on March 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This oversized book has dovoted 2 pages to each important artist from the 1400's to Jackson Pollock. As with all D-K books, the reproductions are wonderful and the information is fascinating. The arthor gives a mixture of facts about the artist's life, painting of the period, key works of the painter, and other events happening in the world at the time. I love this book!
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35 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Simulacrum on March 28, 1999
Format: Hardcover
Teachers commonly say that they learn more about a subject from teaching it than from being a student. In part this is because so much of what we practice is unspoken and intuitive, while teaching requires a certain explicitness and may be most effective when the essence of a subject is portrayed in a simple, impassioned, and powerful way. As a result, one can often learn a lot from brief, introductory overviews of a subject, as is the intention of this attractive, large-format picture book. Several years ago, the author (who is head of the education division at ChristieÕs) wrote Annotated Art (1994), a companion volume in which diagrams, close-ups, and marginal notes were used to analyze 45 key paintings; and, since then, a similar book was produced by the same publisher about the history of architecture (Neil Stevenson, Architecture (1997)). In this third volume in the series, 50 more paintings (different from those in the earlier book), are arranged chronologically, displayed, and discussed in annotations, using introductory paragraphs, marginal notes, biographical highlights, related works, quotes by and about the artists, and short lists of non-art concurrent events. While the result is necessarily superficial, it is also a welcoming, valuable way to be introduced to art history. (Review from Ballast Quarterly Review, Vol 14 No 2, Winter 1998-99)
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Frazzled on October 5, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Take the Young Adult age recommendation seriously. I purchased an updated copy of this book at an elementary school book fair. I'm not squeamish about nudity in art, but the text includes lots of words like "erotic", "homoerotic", "prostitute", "ravished", and "rape". Be aware that this could create a lot of questions that you may not be ready to answer, and your child may not be ready to hear. On the other hand, I quite enjoyed it and would recommend the book for older teens, college students, and adults.
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By samantha dubois on April 8, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is not an in depth look at any one artist, but a great lead in to art history for the beginner.
Pictures are good, however, not always the most popular of each artist.
It's a keeper.
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By Terence Mills on January 19, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I bought this book as a birthday present for my grandaughter who is a keen artist. It's full of lovely reproductions of great pictures, details of the pictures, notes on the artists. Like many DK books, it's a wonderful resource for picking up and dipping into. I hope that she likes it!
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