Italian Painting

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9780883639719: Italian Painting

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From Library Journal:

A book focusing on the history of a single artistic medium within a distinct geographical region might not ordinarily be such a weighty tome, but when the medium is painting and the region is Italy, the result could only be something this colossal. In 29 chapters dominated by plentiful color illustrations, Christiansen (curator of European painting at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York) summarizes 2000 years of art, beginning with the ancient Romans and moving all the way through such present-day painters as Francesco Clemente and Sandro Chia. Christiansen's informative yet ultra-brief introductory essays to each section (e.g., "Sermons in Paint," "Modernism and Beyond") are strictly light reading, underlining the fact that above all else this is a coffee-table book whose main value lies in its impressive illustrations and the curatorial work required to assemble such a massive visual history. As such, it can be recommended as a worthy addition to large academic and art library collections only.
- Douglas F. Smith, Oakland P.L., Cal.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

This gorgeously illustrated, large-format book surveys Italian painting, from rich Roman portraits and fantastical Pompeiian room interiors to post-WW II artists like Francesco Clemente and Enzo Cucchi, who seek ways to overcome alienation by "going beyond modernity." Christiansen, a curator at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, is an engaging guide to 300 color plates. He reveals the tensions between cerebral Florentine drawing and sensual Venetian color. He champions Correggio as an under-appreciated master, nearly as influential as Michelangelo and Leonardo. He stresses regional differences evident in Byzantine-influenced Venetian art, Lombard naturalism and Naples' hard-edged realism. And, by delineating Italian painting's links to artistic theory--from Masaccio's experiments in perspective to Futurism--Christiansen locates one source of this art's continual inventiveness. Text and illustrations marvelously complement each other in this glorious album.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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