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Master Pieces: The Curator's Game Paperback – December 18, 2005
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Credited with initiating the blockbuster exhibitions that have made museums a destination for the many rather than an enclave for the few, Hoving, a former director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and a best-selling author, shares an insider strategy, the "curator's game." It's a simple endeavor. One curator presents his or her peers with close-up photographs of details found in various artworks. The others must then identify the canvas from which it came. Since a curator's work, Hoving writes, is "all about looking," especially "scrutinizing the details," this game sharpens a curator's investigative skills and knowledge. In keeping with his egalitarian spirit, Hoving has created a challenging game of "master pieces" for the public: 214 details and verbal clues are sorted into categories that range from vases to farm animals to bottoms (Hoving's irreverent approach to nudes) to angels. These are followed by reproductions of the 57 paintings from which these details are taken, each the subject of a pithy and informative essay. In all, this is good, smart fun handsomely presented. Donna Seaman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
About the Author
Thomas Hoving, former director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, also served as editor of Connoisseur and cultural correspondent for ABC's "20/20." The author of fifteen books, including the bestsellers Making the Mummies Dance and Tutankhamun, he lives in New York City.
Top customer reviews
My only complaint would be the book is a little small, Hoving talks about using the book to study the details of the pieces yet some of the pictures are only 2x3 inches, makes seeing the detail tough.
Strongly recommended for anyone interested in western art. As this book assumes a basic knowledge of art, I would not recommend for an art novice looking for an intro to art.