The Preference for the Primitive: Episodes in the History of Western Taste and Art

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9780714846323: The Preference for the Primitive: Episodes in the History of Western Taste and Art
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This is a study of the recurring phenomenon in Western art - the feeling that older, less sophisticated works of art are superior to later, more refined ones. It traces the history of debate from classical antiquity to radical primitivism.

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About the Author:

Among E. H. GOMBRICH's many writings are the international bestsellers "The Story of Art "and "Art and Illusion," He was director of the Warburg Institute of the University of London from 1959 to 1976.

Review:

'Gombrich is as usual masterly and vastly erudite.'

'The great gift he gave us was to make the living process of art understandable to us all. Rather than a dry cultural history, he made looking at art -- that perceptual experience -- an adventure.'

'Gombrich has done more than any other human being to draw people towards an enlightened understanding of art... Wearing his immense learning lightly, tackling abstract ideas without losing his readers in jargon, he has attracted a devoted following.'

'Ernst Gombrich was the most famous art historian in the world. His reputation was based less on a particular approach to the subject, or the mastery of a single period, than on the breadth of his interests and his skill at making the history of art interesting to a non-specialist public.'

'Take(s) on just about the weightiest and most controversial subject currently available for art-historical picking-over. For Gombrich to delay until his final book before taking on the appetite for perfectionism is akin to Michelangelo waiting until he was 92 before embarking upon the Sistine ceiling.'

'... did more than any other writer in the last 100 years to introduce a wider public to a love of art. Successive generations of students have been drawn to The Story of Art, his erudite survey of Western art, and his Big Idea: "There is no such thing as art -- there are only artists." An academic who stayed firmly outside his profession's charmed circle, his book was intended as a rallying cry against snobbery and elitism, and has remained a classic.'

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9780714841540: The Preference for the Primitive: Episodes in the History of Western Taste and Art

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ISBN 10:  0714841544 ISBN 13:  9780714841540
Publisher: Phaidon Press, 2002
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Book Description Phaidon Press Ltd, United Kingdom, 2006. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Available in paperback for the first time, Professor Gombrich s highly-acclaimed last book offers a revealing insight into the history and psychology of taste. The Preference for the Primitive is a study of the idea that older and less sophisticated (`primitive ) works are somehow morally and aesthetically superior to later works that have become soft and decadent. Summing up more than 40 years of study and reflection on this theme, this book presents a closely argued narrative supported by extensive quotations that document with precision the role of authors, critics and artists in shaping and changing opinion. Seller Inventory # AA99780714846323

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Book Description Phaidon Press Ltd, United Kingdom, 2006. Paperback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Available in paperback for the first time, Professor Gombrich s highly-acclaimed last book offers a revealing insight into the history and psychology of taste. The Preference for the Primitive is a study of the idea that older and less sophisticated (`primitive ) works are somehow morally and aesthetically superior to later works that have become soft and decadent. Summing up more than 40 years of study and reflection on this theme, this book presents a closely argued narrative supported by extensive quotations that document with precision the role of authors, critics and artists in shaping and changing opinion. Seller Inventory # AA99780714846323

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Book Description Phaidon Press Ltd. Condition: New. 2006. Paperback. Professor Gombrich's last book and first narrative work in over 20 years. Num Pages: 324 pages, 12 col & 230 b&w illus. BIC Classification: ABA; AC. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 245 x 173 x 26. Weight in Grams: 946. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Seller Inventory # V9780714846323

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