William Hogarth wrote his Analysis of Beauty in 1753, during the Age of Enlightenment. Through this captivating text, he tends to define the notion of beauty in painting and states that it is linked, per se, to the use of the serpentine lines in pictorial compositions. He calls it the “line of beauty”. His essay is thus dedicated to the study of the composition of paintings, depending on the correct use of the pictorial lines, light, colour, and the figure’s attitudes. These timeless concepts have been applied by several artists through the centuries. Paintings from every period have here been chosen to support this demonstration. They allow us to explore the various manners in which beauty can be expressed in painting.
Housed in the Hermitage Museum along with other institutes, libraries, and museums in Russia and the republics of the former Soviet Union are some of the most magnificent treasures of Persian Art. For the most part, many of these works have been lost, but have been catalogued and published here for the first time with an unsurpassed selection of colour plates.
In a comprehensive introduction, Vladimir Lukonin, Director of the Oriental Art section of the Hermitage Museum, and his colleague Anatoli Ivanov have broadly documented the major developments of Persian Art: from the first signs of civilisation on the plains of Iran around the 10th century BCE through the early 20th century. In the second part of the book they have catalogued Persian Art giving locations, origins, descriptions, and artist biographies where available. Persian Art demonstrates a common theme which runs through the art of the region over the past three millennia. Despite many religious and political upheavals, Persian Art whether in its architecture, sculpture, frescoes, miniatures, porcelain, fabrics, or rugs; whether in the work of the humble craftsmen or the high art of court painters displays the delicate touch and subtle refinement which has had a profound influence on art throughout the world.
Transylvanian mystique and legendary hauntedness surround the most infamous Bram Stoker’s protagonists, forming a legacy that allows the myth to continue into modern times, maintaining a cultish following, yet broadening to a general fascination. Intrigued by evil and gore, Stoker developed a literary presence that was effortlessly translated to screen by the likes of Murnau, Bela Lugosi, Christopher Lee and Francis Ford Coppola. Dracula became such an obsession as it embodied a taboo subject matter: the desire for blood and sex.
Filled with extraordinary pictures of the Count, his literary companions, and the movie idols, this is a treasure only to be read by daylight!
African Art invites you to explore the dynamic origins of the vast artistic expressions arising from the exotic and mystifying African continent.
Since its rediscovery through the colonial exhibitions at the end of the 19th century, African art has been an unlimited source of inspiration for artists who, over time, have perpetually recreated these artworks.
The power of Sub-Saharan African art lies within its visual diversity, demonstrating the creativity of the artists who continue to conceptualise new stylistic forms. From Mauritania to South Africa and from the Ivory Coast to Somalia, statues, masks, jewellery, pottery, and tapestries compose a variety of daily and ritual objects brought forth from these richly varied societies.
Islamic art is not the art of a nation or of a people, but that of a religion. Spreading from the Arabian Peninsula, the proselyte believers conquered, in a few centuries, a territory spreading from the Atlantic to the Indian Ocean. Multicultural and multiethnic, this polymorphic and highly spiritual art in which all representations of God were prohibited developed canons and various motifs of great decorative value.
Thorough and inventive, these artists expressed their beliefs by creating monumental masterpieces such as the Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem, the Taj Mahal in Agra and the Alhambra in Granada, architectural works in which one recognises the stylisation of motifs of the Muslim ceramics. Lively and colourful, Islamic art mirrors the richness of these people whose common denominator was the belief in one singular truth: the absolute necessity of creating works whose beauty equalled their respect for God.
India, with its extensive and colourful history, has produced an artistic tradition in many forms. Architecture, painting, sculpture, calligraphy, mosaics, and artisan products all display the country’s cultural, religious, and philosophical richness. From Hinduism, with its pantheon of imagery of gods, goddesses, animals, and many other figures, to Islam, with its astounding architecture and intricate calligraphy; the many facets of India have given rise to a fascinating and beautiful collection of artworks.
Featuring incredible images and a text written by a renowned scholar on the subject, this work offers an in-depth look at the masterpieces of India, showcasing this fascinating country and her artists while covering a wide range of styles and techniques.
In the late 1970s, with only her Hasselblad and a telephoto lens, Veretta visited many of New York City’s infamous nightclubs and captured the erotic energy of the peak disco era. Culled from over one thousand images, this collection of black and white photos is an entertaining, often breathtaking documentary of a unique moment in our history.
À la fin des années 1970, Veretta Cobler explore avec son appareil photo le véritable monde de la nuit new-yorkaise, dans lequel se mêlent gays, drag-queens et jeunesse huppée. Cet univers interlope saisi sur le vif offre une image extravagante et bigarrée de New York. Ces photos reportages sont le témoignage d’une époque encore épargnée par la tragédie du sida qui allait bientôt endeuiller cette génération underground.
For centuries Russia had no great painters to speak of. Artists like Rublov concentrated nearly all their creative talent on the painting of icons. But with the accession to the throne of Peter the Great, the world of the European Enlightenment flooded into this large and reputedly backwards empire.
St. Petersburg emerged from the swamps as if by miracle, thanks to the genius of an Italian architect, and for more than a century it was a cultural epicenter. The all-powerful Tsars that followed, along with Catherine the Great, encouraged exchange between European and Russian artists. And from this exchange Russian painting was born, drawing strong inspiration from Italy and its colours, and combining this with the traditions of Russian art. It was not until the 19th century, however, that a true national style emerged, with the Itinerants and the Blue Rose group. The Revolution followed, and with it, the Russian avant-garde and modernism.
Throughout the book the author investigates Russian culture, which he finds to result from Eastern influences as much as Western. The illustrations reflect his analysis of these influences, and, covering all genres and styles, they add up to a stunning pictorial variety. The works of artists like Borovikovsky, Serov, Vrubel, Briullov, Fedotov, Repin, Shishkin and Levitan, among many others, here showcase the fundamental contributions these painters have made to the history of world art. Writing after the fall of communism, Peter Leek puts into perspective the history and evolution of Russian art.
Gothic art finds its roots in the powerful architecture of the cathedrals of northern France. It is a medieval art movement that evolved throughout Europe for more than 200 years. Leaving curved Roman forms behind, the architects started using flying buttresses and pointed arches to open cathedrals to the daylight. A period of great economic and social change, the gothic era also saw the development of a new iconography celebrating the Holy Mary, in contrast to the fearful themes of dark Roman times. Full of rich changes in all the different arts (architecture, sculpture, painting, etc.), Gothic art gave way to the Italian Renaissance and International Gothic.
Born at the dawn of the 20th century, Fauvism burst onto the artistic scene at the 1905 Salon d’Automne with great controversy by throwing bright, vibrant colours in the face of artistic convention. Fuelled by change, artists like Matisse, Derain, and Vlaminck searched for a new chromatic language by using colour out of its habitual context. Freed from the strict technique advocated by the École des Beaux-Arts, they used colour as their main resource, their only standard seen in flat tints, saturating their stunning paintings. The author invites us to experience this vivid artistic evolution that, although encompassing a short amount of time, left its mark on the path to modernity.
Asymbol of modernity, the Viennese Secession was defined by the rebellion of twenty artists who were against the conservative Vienna Künstlerhaus’ oppressive influence over the city, the epoch, and the whole Austro-Hungarian Empire. Influenced by Art Nouveau, this movement (created in 1897 by Gustav Klimt, Carl Moll, and Josef Hoffmann) was not an anonymous artistic revolution. Defining itself as a “total art”, without any political or commercial constraint, the Viennese Secession represented the ideological turmoil that affected craftsmen, architects, graphic artists, and designers from this period.
Turning away from an established art and immersing themselves in organic, voluptuous, and decorative shapes, these artists opened themselves to an evocative, erotic aesthetic that blatantly offended the bourgeoisie of the time. Painting, sculpture, and architecture are addressed by the authors and highlight the diversity and richness of a movement whose motto proclaimed “for each time its art, for each art its liberty” – a declaration to the innovation and originality of this revolutionary art movement.
The Art Deco movement emerged from the remnants of a world that had been torn apart after World War I. This aesthetic movement came to embody dreams of industry and prosperity. In the whirl of the Jazz Age and frenzy of the “Roaring Twenties”, the streamlined silhouette of the flapper girl was reflected in the architectural aesthetic of Art Deco -the rounded curve was conquered by the androgynous straight line. Architecture, painting, furniture, and sculpture evolved into oeuvres enhanced with sharp lines and broken angles. Although short lived, this movement still influences contemporary design today.
The Russian Avant-Garde was born at the turn of the twentieth century in pre-revolutionary Russia. The intellectual and cultural turmoil had then reached a peak and provided fertile soil for the formation of the movement. For many artists influenced by European art, the movement represented a way of liberating themselves from the social and aesthetic constraints of the past. It was these Avant-Garde artists who, through their immense creativity, gave birth to abstract art, thereby elevating Russian culture to a modern level.
Such painters as Kandinsky, Malevich, Goncharova, Larionov, and Tatlin, to name but a few, had a definitive impact on twentieth-century art.
Covering 27 museums throughout 27 European capitals, here you can discover some of the most beautiful museum collections in Europe, their creation, and the story of their acquisitions led by the most well-known curators and art enthusiasts. Additionally, it highlights the various cultural policies and points of view concerning the promotion of artistic heritage in Europe. The most emblematic European museums are presented along with some well-kept and fascinating secrets, such as in Nicosia of Cyprus and Sofia in Bulgaria.
At the beginning of the 20th-century, trends started to emerge that began to diverge from a naturalistic conception of reality and set out to explore beneath the mere superficial appearance of things. Throughout, the author shows that, regardless of the multitude of stylistic backgrounds in individual Western countries, everywhere, realisation that a work of art was no longer made in the spirit of the old aesthetics of imitation as if taken from nature, but rather rises from its own independent dimension of existence. A work of art is now autonomous.
In this book, the author traces and analyses the origins and the history of abstract art as well as iconic movements and groundbreaking visionaries in an original and exciting way.
The Art Deco movement emerged from the remnants of a world that had been torn apart after World War I. This aesthetic movement came to embody dreams of industry and prosperity. In the whirl of the Jazz Age and frenzy of the “Roaring Twenties”, the streamlined silhouette of the flapper girl was reflected in the architectural aesthetic of Art Deco -the rounded curve was conquered by the androgynous straight line. Architecture, painting, furniture, and sculpture evolved into oeuvres enhanced with sharp lines and broken angles. Although short-lived, this movement still influences contemporary design today.
Art Nouveau designates a decorative and architectural style developed in the 1880s and 1890s in the West. Born in reaction to the Industrial Revolution and to the creative vacuum it left behind, Art Nouveau was at the heart of a “renaissance” in the decorative arts. The primary objective of the movement was the creation of a new aesthetic of nature through a return to the study of natural subjects. In order to achieve this, such artists as Gustav Klimt, Koloman Moser, Antoni Gaudí, Jan Toorop, and William Morris favoured innovation in technique and novelty of forms.
After its triumph at the Paris Universal Exposition in 1900, the trend continued and has inspired many artists ever since. Art Deco, the successor of Art Nouveau, appeared after World War II.
The Baroque period lasted from the beginning of the 17th-century to the middle of the 18th-century. Baroque art was artists’ response to the Catholic Church’s demand for solemn grandeur following the Council of Trent, and through its monumentality and grandiloquence, it seduced the great European courts. Amongst the Baroque arts, architecture has, without doubt, left the greatest mark in Europe: the continent is dotted with magnificent Baroque churches and palaces, commissioned by patrons at the height of their power. The works of Gian Lorenzo Bernini of the Southern School and Peter Paul Rubens of the Northern School alone show the importance of this artistic period. Rich in images encompassing the arts of painting, sculpture and architecture, this work offers a complete insight into this passionate period in the history of art.
For more than a millennium, from its creation in 330 A.D. until its fall in 1453, the Byzantine Empire was a cradle of artistic effervescence that we are only beginning to rediscover. Endowed with the rich heritage of Roman, Eastern and Christian cultures, Byzantine artists developed an architectural and pictorial tradition, marked by symbolism, whose influence extended far beyond the borders of the Empire. Today, Italy, Northern Africa, and the Near East preserve the vestiges of this sophisticated artistic tradition, with all of its mystical and luminous beauty.
The magnificence of the palaces, churches, paintings, enamels, ceramics and mosaics from this civilisation guarantees Byzantine art’s powerful influence and timelessness.
Les Demoiselles d’Avignon: five young women that changed modern art forever. Faces seen simultaneously from the front and in profile, angular bodies whose once voluptuous feminine forms disappear behind asymmetric lines – with this work, Picasso revolutionised the entire history of painting. Cubism was thus born in 1907. Transforming natural forms into cylinders and cubes, painters like Juan Gris and Robert Delaunay, led by Braque and Picasso, imposed a new vision upon the world that was in total opposition to the principles of the Impressionists. Largely diffused in Europe, Cubism developed rapidly in successive phases that brought art history to all the richness of the 20th-century: from the futurism of Boccioni to the abstraction of Kandinsky, from the Suprematism of Malevich to the Constructivism of Tatlin.
Linking the core text of Guillaume Apollinaire with the studies of Dr Dorothea Eimert, this work offers a new interpretation of modernity’s crucial moment and permits the reader to rediscover, through their biographies, the principal representatives of the movement.
Oscillating between the majesty of the Greco-Byzantine tradition and the modernity predicted by Giotto, Early Italian Painting addresses the first important aesthetic movement that would lead to the Renaissance, the Italian Primitives. Trying new mediums and techniques, these revolutionary artists no longer painted frescoes on walls, but created the first mobile paintings on wooden panels. The visages of the figures were painted to shock the spectator in order to emphasise the divinity of the character being represented. The bright gold leafed backgrounds were used to highlight the godliness of the subject. The elegance of both line and colour were combined to reinforce specific symbolic choices. Ultimately the Early Italian artists wished to make the invisible – visible. In this magnificent book, the authors emphasise the importance that the rivalry between the Sienese and Florentine schools played in the evolution of art history. The reader, in the course of these forgotten masterworks, will discover how the sacred began to take a more human form, opening a discrete but definitive door through the use of anthropomorphism, a technique that would be cherished by the Renaissance.
Egyptian art is perhaps the most impersonal that exists. The artist effaces himself. But he has such an innate sense of life, a sense so directly moved and so limpid that everything of life which he describes seems defined by that sense, to issue from the natural gesture, from the exact attitude, in which one no longer sees stiffness. His impersonality resembles that of the trees bowing in the wind with a single movement and without resistance, or that of the water which wrinkles into equal circles all moving in the same direction.
From afar, Egyptian art seems changeless and forever like itself. From nearby, it offers, like that of all the other peoples, the spectacle of great evolutions, of progress toward freedom of expression, of researches in imposed hieratism. Egypt is so far from us that it all seems on the same plane. One forgets that there are fifteen or twenty centuries, the age of Christianity — between the “Seated Scribe” and the great classic period, twenty-five or thirty centuries, fifty, perhaps — twice the time that separates us from Pericles and Phidias — between the pyramids and the Saite school, the last living manifestation of the Egyptian ideal.
Max Beckmann, Otto Dix, George Grosz, Emil Nolde, E.L. Kirchner, Paul Klee, Franz Marc as well as the Austrians Oskar Kokoschka and Egon Schiele were among the generation of highly individual artists who contributed to the vivid and often controversial new movement in early 20th-century Germany and Austria: Expressionism. This publication introduces these artists and their work.
The author, art historian Ashley Bassie, explains how Expressionist art led the way to a new, intense, evocative treatment of psychological, emotional and social themes of the early 20th-century. The book examines the developments of Expressionism and its key works, highlighting the often intensely subjective imagery and the aspirations and conflicts from which it emerged while focusing precisely on the artists of the movement.
Greek art, at the very moment that it was breaking up in depth, was scattering over the whole material surface of Hellenic antiquity. After the movement of concentration that had brought to Athens all the forces of Hellenism, a movement of dispersal began, which was to carry from Athens to southern Italy, to Sicily, to Cyrenaica, Egypt, the Islands, and Asia Minor the passion and, unfortunately, the mania, for beautiful things—in default of creative genius. Dilettantism and the diffusion of taste multiply and at the same time weaken talent. It is the Hellenistic period, perhaps the richest in artists and in works of art that history has to show, but possibly, also, one of the poorest in power of emotion.
The ideal of the Greek is wisdom. He also has a strong feeling for what is just, but what is beautiful and what is true is to the same degree the object of his passion. He finds in each of these ideas the echoes of the other two, and completes, tempers, and broadens each one through the others. Phidias is in Pythagoras, and Socrates is in Phidias.
The “Greek miracle” was necessary. The whole ancient world had prepared, had willed its coming. During the fruitful silence when the Dorians were “accumulating within themselves the strength of their soil, Egypt and Assyria kept their lead. But they were discouraged and stricken by the cold of age. They were to become the initiators of the Hellenic Renaissance, as they had been the guides for the childhood of the peoples of the Archipelago. Greek Art, the perfume of the Greek soul, is preserved until our time, through Pompeii.
«I paint what I see and not what it pleases others to see.» What other words than these of Édouard Manet, seemingly so different from the sentiments of Monet or Renoir, could best designate the movement of Impressionism? Without a doubt, this singularity was explained when, shortly before his death, Claude Monet wrote: “I remain sorry to have been the cause of the name given to a group the majority of which did not have anything Impressionist.”
In this work, Nathalia Brodskaïa examines the contradictions of this late 19th-century movement through the paradox of a group who, while forming a coherent ensemble, favoured the affimation of artistic individuals. Between academic art and the birth of modern, non-figurative painting, the road to recognition was long. Analysing the founding elements of the movement, the author follows, through the works of each of the artists, how the demand for individuality gave rise to modern painting.
India, with its extensive and colourful history, has produced an artistic tradition in many forms. Architecture, painting, sculpture, calligraphy, mosaics, and artisan products all display the country’s cultural, religious, and philosophical richness. From Hinduism, with its pantheon of imagery of gods, goddesses, animals, and many other figures, to Islam, with its astounding architecture and intricate calligraphy; the many facets of India have given rise to a fascinating and beautiful collection of artworks. Featuring incredible images and a text written by a renowned scholar on the subject, this work offers an in-depth look at the masterpieces of India, showcasing this fascinating country and her artists while covering a wide range of styles and techniques.
Développé à travers l’Europe pendant plus de 200 ans, l’art gothique est un mouvement qui trouve ses racines dans la puissante architecture des cathédrales du nord de la France. Délaissant la rondeur romane, les architectes commencèrent à utiliser les arcs-boutants et les voûtes en berceau brisé pour ouvrir les cathédrales à la lumière. Période de bouleversements économiques et sociaux, la période gothique vit aussi le développement d’une nouvelle iconographie célébrant la Vierge, à l’opposé de la thématique terrifiante de l’époque romane. Riche de changements dans tous les domaines (architecture, sculpture, peinture, enluminure, etc.), l’art gothique s’effaça peu à peu face à la Renaissance italienne.
Ce qui caractérise la peinture française sous le Second Empire, entre les deux Révolutions de 1848 et de 1870, c’est le triomphe du réalisme. Il nous faut donc définir ce terme lancé par l’écrivain Champfleury. Esthétiquement parlant, le réalisme est le contraire de l’idéalisme et consiste à reproduire les choses telles qu’elles sont, sans prétendre les épurer, les ennoblir ou les embellir par le travail de l’esprit. L’artiste ne doit représenter que ce qu’il a vu.
D’un point de vue historique, le réalisme nous apparaît avant tout comme une réaction contre les excès du romantisme. Courbet et après lui les impressionnistes ne se soucient plus d’évoquer par le pinceau les scènes de la légende et de l’histoire ou d’illustrer les visions des poètes : leur seule ambition est de peindre leur temps. Le chef de file de ce mouvement était sans conteste Gustave Courbet, suivi par des peintres aussi prestigieux que Jean-Baptiste Corot, Honoré Daumier , Henri Fantin-Latour, Édouard Manet et Jean-François Millet dont les œuvres sont à classées dans le réalisme social.
Naive art first became popular at the end of the 19th-century. Until that time this form of expression, created by untrained artists and characterised by spontaneity and simplicity, enjoyed little recognition from professional artists and art critics. Influenced by primitive arts, naive painting is distinguished by the fluidity of its lines, vivacity, and joyful colours, as well as by its rather clean-cut, simple shapes.
Naive art is represented by such artists as Henri Rousseau, Séraphine de Senlis, André Bauchant, and Camille Bombois. This movement has also found adherents abroad, including such prominent artists as Joan Miró, Guido Vedovato, Niko Pirosmani, and Ivan Generalic.
In the arts, Neoclassicism is a historical tradition or aesthetic attitude based on the art of Greece and Rome in antiquity. The movement started around the 18th-century, age of Enlightenment, and continued into the early 19th-century The general credo associated with the aesthetic attitude of Classicism was that art had to be rational and therefore morally better. Neoclassicists also believed that art should be cerebral, not sensual and therefore characterised by clarity of form, sober colours and shallow space. It was a reaction against both the surviving Baroque and Rococo styles, and a desire to return to the perceived “purity” of the arts of Rome.
The important artists of the movement include the sculptors Antonio Canova, Jean-Antoine Houdon and Bertel Thorvaldsen, and the painters J.A.D. Ingres, Jacques-Louis David and Anton Raphael Mengs.
Housed in the Hermitage Museum along with other institutes, libraries, and museums in Russia and the republics of the former Soviet Union are some of the most magnif icent treasures of Persian Art. For the most part, many of these works have been lost, but have been catalogued and published here for the first time with an unsurpassed selection of colour plates. In a comprehensive introduction, Vladimir Loukonine, Director of the Oriental Art section of the Hermitage Museum, and his colleague Anatoli Ivanov have broadly documented the major developments of Persian Art: from the first signs of civilisation on the plains of Iran around the 10th-century BCE through the early 20th-century. Persian Art demonstrates a common theme which runs through the art of the region over the past three millennia. Despite many religious and political upheavals, Persian Art – whether in its architecture, sculpture, frescoes, miniatures, porcelain, fabrics, or rugs; whether in the work of the humble craftsmen or the high art of court painters – displays the delicate touch and subtle refinement which has had a profound influence on art throughout the world.
While Impressionism marked the first steps toward modern painting by revolutionising an artistic medium stifled by academic conventions, Post-Impressionism, even more revolutionary, completely liberated colour and opened it to new, unknown horizons. Anchored in his epoch, relying on the new chromatic studies of Michel Eugène Chevreul, Georges Seurat transcribed the chemist’s theory of colours into tiny points that created an entire image. With his heavy strokes, Van Gogh illustrated the midday sun, while Cézanne renounced perspective. Rich in its variety and in the singularity of its artists, Post-Impressionism was a passage taken by all the well-known figures of 20th-century painting – it is here presented, for the great pleasure of the reader, by Nathalia Brodskaïa.
Deriving from the French word rocaille, in reference to the curved forms of shellfish, and the Italian Barocco, the French created the term Rococo. Appearing at the beginning of the 18th-century, it rapidly spread to the whole of Europe. Extravagant and light, Rococo responded perfectly to the spontaneity of the aristocracy of the time. In many aspects, this art was linked to its predecessor, Baroque, and it is thus also referred to as late Baroque style. While artists such as Tiepolo, Boucher and Reynolds carried the style to its apogee, the movement was often condemned for its superficiality. In the second half of the 18th-century, Rococo began its decline. At the end of the century, facing the advent of Neoclassicism, it was plunged into obscurity. It had to wait nearly a century before art historians could restore it to the radiance of its golden age, which is rediscovered in this work by Klaus H. Carl and Victoria Charles.
In art history, the term Romanesque art distinguishes the period between the beginning of the 11th and the end of the 12th-century. This era showed a great diversity of regional schools each with their own unique style. In architecture as well as in sculpture, Romanesque art is marked by raw forms. Through its rich iconography and captivating text, this work reclaims the importance of this art which is today often overshadowed by the later Gothic style.
Romanticism was a reaction against the Neoclassicism that invaded the 19th-century, and marked a veritable intellectual rupture. Found in the writings of Victor Hugo and Lord Byron among others, its ideas are expressed in painting by Eugène Delacroix, Caspar David Friedrich and William Blake. In sculpture, François Rude indicated the direction this new artistic freedom would take, endowing his work with a movement and expression never previously seen.
By retracing the different stages of its evolution, this book offers a study of the different aspects of the Romantic movement. Thanks to a thorough and in-depth analysis, the reader can understand in its entirety this movement which revolutionised the era.
Arriving with a bang on the post-World War I scene, the Surrealists proclaimed a revolution of thought and creation, insisting on breaking away from the past and a world that had been left in ruins. This refusal to integrate into bourgeois society was also a leitmotiv of the Dada movement, a rebellious trait that led André Breton to say that Dadaism was “a machine had not thought to come up with new perspectives. It was this comment that gave birth to Surrealism. The Surrealists frequently collaborated with Dada artists on intellectual levels for which exclusivity had often become the general rule.
In his descriptions of the Surrealists as part of a force of absolute resistance, the author approaches the movement in an exciting and original way. Balanced between provocation and cultural revolution, weren’t the Surrealists most of all the products of creative individualism in this period buffeted by history?
Symbolism appeared in France and Europe between the 1880s and the beginning of the 20th-century. The Symbolists, fascinated with ancient mythology, attempted to escape the reign of rational thought imposed by science. They wished to transcend the world of the visible and the rational in order to attain the world of pure thought, constantly flirting with the limits of the unconscious.
The French Gustave Moreau, Odilon Redon, the Belgians Fernand Khnopff and Félicien Rops, the English Edward Burne-Jones and Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and the Dutch Jan Toorop are the most representative artists of the movement.
In Victorian England, with the country swept up in the Industrial Revolution, the Pre-Raphaelites, close to William Morris’ Arts and Crafts movement, yearned for a return to bygone values. Wishing to revive the pure and noble forms of the Italian Renaissance, the major painters of the circle such as John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti and William Holman Hunt, in opposition to the academicism of the time, favoured realism and biblical themes over the affected canons of the 19th-century. This work, with its captivating text and rich illustrations, describes with enthusiasm this singular movement which notably inspired Art Nouveau and Symbolism.
September 4, 476 A. D. marked the end of the Western Roman Empire. After several centuries of prosperity, Europe sank into chaos. With Charlemagne, a new dynamic begins that of a civilising reconstruction. The Romanesque period is part of the rediscovery of this Roman Empire, lost in memories, but living on in the architectural testimonies of the cities and the countryside. In art history, Romanesque art refers to the period between the beginning of the 11th and the end of the 12th century. This era was characterised by a great diversity of regional schools, each practising their own unique style. In architecture as well as in sculpture, Romanesque art is marked by raw forms. Through its rich iconography and captivating text, this work endeavours to restore the importance of this art which is often overshadowed by the later Gothic style.
Gothic art is defined by the powerful architecture of the cathedrals of northern France. It is a medieval art movement that evolved throughout Europe over 200 years. Abandoning curved Roman forms, the architects started using flying buttresses and pointed arches to open cathedrals to daylight. A period of great economic and social change, the Gothic era incorporated new iconography celebrating the Holy Mary — a drastic contrast to the dismal themes of Roman times. Full of rich changes in all of the various art forms (architecture, sculpture, painting, etc.), Gothic art paved the way for the Italian Renaissance and the International Gothic movement.
Empires are born. Empires reach their peak. Empires die, but leave their mark through their architecture and
artistic achievements. From these specks of dust of memory, 40 centuries of history shape our world of the 21st century. The power of ancient Egypt was followed by the influence of Greece, which brought the Persian East together in the conquests of Alexander the Great. After Cleopatra, the last queen of Egypt, Rome became the power that ruled part of the world, finally dying out in the fall of the Byzantine Empire on 29 May 1453. The authors take the reader on a journey through time and space and highlight the succession of these civilisations that rubbed shoulders, even fought against each other and led us towards a more enlightened humanity.
The Virgin and the Child are amongst the most favourite artistic themes since the Middle Ages. Mary was frequently depicted with the Christ Child.This religious scene showcases a mother and her son, sometimes accompanied by other protagonists. Originally distant and formal, the relationship between the two figures was expressed with tendernessat the end of the Middle Ages and became more human. Amongst the famous artists who have treated the subject of the Virgin and the Child are, most notably, Cimabue, Jean Fouquet, Quentin Metsys, Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Rubens, and many others. 300 pictures and more than 500 pages including detailed captions, offer a thorough insider view on the subject.
Born at the dawn of the 20th-century, Fauvism burst onto the artistic scene at the 1905 Salon d’Automne with great controversy by throwing bright, vibrant colours in the face of artistic convention. Fuelled by change, artists like Matisse, Derain, and Vlaminck searched for a new chromatic language by using colour out of its habitual context. Freed from the strict technique advocated by the École des Beaux-Arts, they used colour as their main resource, their only standard seen in flat tints, saturating their stunning paintings. The author invites us to experience this vivid artistic evolution that, although encompassing a short amount of time, left its mark on the path to modernity.