- Hardcover: 224 pages
- Publisher: National Gallery London; First edition (September 10, 1998)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0300077130
- ISBN-13: 978-0300077131
- Product Dimensions: 11.3 x 9.2 x 0.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #130,834 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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On Reflection Hardcover – September 10, 1998
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When we look into a mirror, we do not "see" the surface, we see only our reflection. But in a painting, our eye is drawn to the marked surface of the canvas, which creates the illusion of a reflection. Jonathan Miller's On Reflection, published to coincide with his show "Mirror Image" at London's National Gallery, is a dazzling investigation of artists as diverse as van Eyck, Dürer, Velázquez, Ingres, Helen Chadwick, and Robert Mapplethorpe. Miller explores the tricks and games by which painting and, more recently, photography create this illusion of reflection.
The artistic representation of reflection has challenged artists for centuries, a problem particularly acute in Miller's most sustained example--the mirror. Drawing on studies of cognitive perception, On Reflection explains how we come to understand the difference between a reflection and "the real thing," and how vital reflections are in defining our own sense of identity. Miller's fascination with his subject comes across in bravura and original reassessments of the paintings he considers, and in the tricks that these works often play on the viewer. Lavishly and imaginatively illustrated, with wonderful inset captions that take the paintings apart in support of Miller's argument, this is one of the most enjoyable, accessible, and original books on art to have appeared in recent years.
From Library Journal
Basing his work on an exhibition now on view at London's National Gallery, the polymathic Miller has articulated a fascinating and eloquent disquisition on reflections as they appear within the tradition of European art. Included in this always accessible consideration is not only a subtle analysis of reflective surfaces as they are represented in our pictorial tradition but also a scientifically grounded exposition of the psychological tools with which we deal with these luminous objects. In addition to providing a vocabulary for discussion, Miller explores the manifold artistic and psychic ramifications of the mirror in portraiture and self-portraiture. Miller's characterization of the exquisitely reproduced works is always apt and insightful. Though this handsomely designed volume is ill served by the jokey reversal of page enumerations and awkwardly placed and almost indecipherable plate labels, it is difficult to imagine a student of the visual arts who would not benefit from acquaintance with Miller's reflections.?Robert Cahn, Fashion Inst. of Technology, New York
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is a book to look into and to read again and again! Till now I borrowed it from the library, but I am happy to have it for myself now.