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500 years after the death of Leonardo Da Vinci, Ben Lewis considers the unrivalled legacy of his art through an original biography of the `Salvator Mundi' (Saviour of the World) - the lost Da Vinci painting. In 2017, Leonardo da Vinci's small oil painting, the Salvator Mundi was sold at auction for $450m. In the words of its discoverer, the image of Christ as saviour of the world is `the rarest thing on the planet by the greatest human being who ever lived'. Its dazzling price also makes it the world's most expensive painting. For two centuries art dealers had searched in vain for the Holy Grail of art history: a portrait of Christ as the Salvator Mundi by Leonardo da Vinci. Many similar paintings of greatly varying quality had been executed by Leonardo's assistants in the first half of the sixteenth century. But where was the original by the master himself? In November 2017, Christie's auction house announced they had it. But did they? The Last Leonardo tells a thrilling tale of a spellbinding icon invested with the power to make or break the reputations of scholars, billionaires, kings and sheikhs. Lewis takes us to Leonardo's studio in Renaissance Italy; to the court of Charles I and the English Civil War; to Holland, Moscow and Louisiana; to the galleries, salerooms and restorer's workshop as the painting slowly, painstakingly, emerged from obscurity. The vicissitudes of the highly secretive art market are charted across five centuries. It is a twisting tale of geniuses and oligarchs, double-crossings and disappearances, where we're never quite certain what to believe. Above all, it is an adventure story about the search for lost treasure, and a quest for the truth.
A fascinating new history of art, this gloriously illustrated book reveals how materials, techniques, and ideas have evolved over the centuries, inspiring artists to create their most celebrated works. Covering a comprehensive array of topics, from the first pigments and frescos to linear perspective in Renaissance paintings, the influence of photography, Impressionism, and the birth of modern art, The Story of Painting follows each step in the evolution of painting over the last 25,000 years, from the first cave paintings to the abstract works of the last 100 years. Packed with lavish colour reproductions of paintings and photographs of artists at work and the materials they used, it also focuses on key paintings from each period to analyse the techniques and secrets of the great masters in detail. Immerse yourself in the pages of this beautiful book and find yourself dazzled by new colours; marvel at the magic of perspective; wonder at glowing depictions of fabric and flesh; understand cubism; and embrace abstraction. It will transform your understanding and enjoyment of paintings forever.
Embark on a grand tour of art history with this guide to the story of art, and the big ideas and themes behind the world's most important artistic movements, artworks, and artists. The Art Book explores the more than 80 of the world's most groundbreaking artworks by history's most influential painters, sculptors, and artists with stunning visuals and insightful quotations. Discover key artworks and artists from across the globe, stretching from the prehistoric Altamira cave paintings and Chinese jade carvings to more impressionism, symbolism, cubism, and pop art. Understand the ideas that inspired masterpieces by Botticelli, Rembrandt, Klimt, Matisse, Picasso, and dozens more, with The Art Book's fascinating overview of painting, drawing, printing, sculpture, conceptual art, and performance art, from ancient history to the modern day.
Leonardo da Vinci was the original Renaissance Man: an artist, mathematician, inventor and writer amongst his many talents. This calendar brings together 12 of his drawings which display not only his skilful observation, but also an elegance, with the gentle features of his subjects graced with unrivalled eloquence. Informative text accompanies each work and the datepad features previous and next month's views. Created by Flame Tree Studio - The Art of Fine Gifts.
`Kemp is a natural storyteller... This book leads you on a journey through the life, work and legacy of one of history's most intriguing figures.' The Times In an engaging personal narrative interwoven with historical research, Martin Kemp discusses a life spent immersed in the world of Leonardo, and his encounters with great and lesser academics, collectors and curators, devious dealers and unctuous auctioneers, major scholars and authors, pseudo-historians and fantasists. He shares how he has grappled with swelling legions of `Leonardo loonies', walked on the eggshells of vested interests in academia and museums, and fended off fusillades of non-Leonardos, sometimes more than one a week. Examining the greatest masterpieces, from the Last Supper to Salvator Mundi, through the expert's eye, we learn first-hand of the thorny questions that surround attribution, the scientific analyses that support the experts' interpretations, and the continuing importance of connoisseurship. Throughout, from the most scholarly interpretations to the popularity of Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, we are reminded of Leonardo's unique genius and wonder at how an artist from 500 years ago continues to make such compelling posthumous demands on all those who engage with him.
Leonardo's greatest work of science beautifully reproduced for the 500th anniversary of his death. This edition offers a high-quality facsimile reproduction of Leonardo Da Vinci's Codex Leicester, a collection of his scientific writings. Named after Thomas Coke (later Earl of Leicester) who purchased it in 1719, Codex Leicester holds the record as the most expensive book ever when it was bought by Bill Gates in 1994. Consisting of 72 pages, it was handwritten in Italian by Leonardo using his characteristic mirror writing, and is supported by drawings and diagrams. The Codex Leicester is an extraordinary mixture of Leonardo's observations and theories. Topics include his explanation of why fossils can be found on mountains; the flow of water in rivers; and the luminosity of the moon which Leonardo attributed to its surface being covered by water which reflects light from the sun. The facsimile reproduction is complemented by three further volumes that include a new transcription and translation, accompanied by a paraphrase in modern language, a page-by-page commentary, and a series of interpretative essays. These four volumes together introduce important new research into the interpretation of the texts and images, on the setting of Leonardo's ideas in the context of ancient and medieval theories, and above all into the notable fortunes of the Codex within the sciences of astronomy, water, and the history of the earth, opening a new field of research into the impact of Leonardo as a scientist after his death.
'In this painting of Leonardo's there was a smile so pleasing that it seemed divine rather than human.' Often called "the first art historian", Vasari writes with delight on the lives of Leonardo and other celebrated Renaissance artists . Introducing Little Black Classics: 80 books for Penguin's 80th birthday. Little Black Classics celebrate the huge range and diversity of Penguin Classics, with books from around the world and across many centuries. They take us from a balloon ride over Victorian London to a garden of blossom in Japan, from Tierra del Fuego to 16th-century California and the Russian steppe. Here are stories lyrical and savage; poems epic and intimate; essays satirical and inspirational; and ideas that have shaped the lives of millions. Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574). Vasari's works available in Penguin Classics are Lives of the Artists Volume I and Volume II.
Hieronymus Bosch lived and worked over 500 hundred years ago in the Netherlands' town of Hertogenbosch, from which he takes his name. He is best known for his fantastical, wondrous art full of strange creatures - both grotesque and heavenly. The work he has left behind still defies the imagination. This calendar portrays 12 of his complex, impressive and debauched artworks. Informative text accompanies each work and the datepad features previous and next month's views.
Part of a series of exciting and luxurious Flame Tree Notebooks. Combining high-quality production with magnificent fine art, the covers are printed on foil in five colours, embossed then foil stamped. And they're powerfully practical: a pocket at the back for receipts and scraps, two bookmarks and a solid magnetic side flap. These are perfect for personal use and make a dazzling gift. This example is based on 'Girl with a Pearl Earring' by Vermeer.
A never-before-seen presentation of art and architecture from the Renaissance era, in elegant, informative, and engaging three-dimensional form. Accompanied by stunning art and ingenious pop engineering, Renaissance Art Pop-Up Book presents the talent and imagination of some of the most influential artists in history. Ranging from the influences of Gothic art on the early Renaissance to the culmination of High Renaissance, this book follows the appearance of new forms in religious and secular painting and the burgeoning use of groundbreaking techniques, such as perspective and narrative in painting; new innovations in architecture; and the unique genius of artists from all over Europe. The book features the most outstanding artists, art, and architecture of the period, including the frescoes of Giotto, Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel, and the works of Caravaggio, Botticelli, Titian, Durer, and Massacio, to name only a few. Innovative pop-ups include a working camera obscura; da Vinci's -flying machine-; Piero della Francesca's View of the Ideal City, with removable perspective lines; Brunelleschi's majestic Duomo in Florence; and a fold-out timeline of the Renaissance. Showcasing the artistic innovations of the era in interactive format, this book gives the reader a fresh perspective, thereby teaching the principles and history of the Renaissance in a new and unique way. Renaissance Art Pop-Up Book is a superb tour of the greatest achievements of the world's early masters, and is the perfect educational gift for art lovers of all ages.
An authoritative history of art history from its medieval origins to its modern predicaments In this wide-ranging and authoritative book, the first of its kind in English, Christopher Wood tracks the evolution of the historical study of art from the late middle ages through the rise of the modern scholarly discipline of art history. Synthesizing and assessing a vast array of writings, episodes, and personalities, this original and accessible account of the development of art-historical thinking will appeal to readers both inside and outside the discipline. The book shows that the pioneering chroniclers of the Italian Renaissance "Lorenzo Ghiberti and Giorgio Vasari "measured every epoch against fixed standards of quality. Only in the Romantic era did art historians discover the virtues of medieval art, anticipating the relativism of the nineteenth century, when art history learned to admire the art of all societies and to value every work as an index of its times. The major art historians of the modern era, however "Jacob Burckhardt, Aby Warburg, Heinrich Wo ^lfflin, Erwin Panofsky, Meyer Schapiro, and Ernst Gombrich "struggled to adapt their work to the rupture of artistic modernism, leading to the current predicaments of the discipline. Combining erudition with clarity, this book makes a landmark contribution to the understanding of art history.
Part of a series of exciting and luxurious Flame Tree Notebooks. Combining high-quality production with magnificent fine art, the covers are printed on foil in five colours, embossed then foil stamped. And they're powerfully practical: a pocket at the back for receipts and scraps, two bookmarks and a solid magnetic side flap. These are perfect for personal use and make a dazzling gift. This example is based on Leonardo da Vinci's 'Detail of the Head of the Virgin'.
This major new biography recounts the extraordinary life of one of
the most creative figures in Western culture, weaving together the
multiple threads of Michelangelo's life and times with a brilliant
analysis of his greatest works. The author retraces Michelangelo's
journey from Rome to Florence, explores his changing religious
views and examines the complicated politics of patronage in
Renaissance Italy. The psychological portrait of Michelangelo is
constantly foregrounded, depicting with great conviction a
tormented man, solitary and avaricious, burdened with repressed
homosexuality and a surplus of creative enthusiasm. Michelangelo's
acts of self-representation and his pivotal role in constructing
his own myth are compellingly unveiled.
The Renaissance was probably the most influential and fertile period of European cultural history. We are all familiar with the giants of High Renaissance art - Michelangelo, Leonardo, Raphael - but how much do you really know about how it all started and why it was so revolutionary? This easily accessible, fresh and beautiful introduction to this wonderful world takes you from the stirrings of a revival in classical learning and humanist thought in late medieval Italy through the application of technical developments in painting and scientific knowledge, to the blossoming of astounding artworks that we all know and love, reaching its peak in the sixteenth century. A digestible introduction to the background and history of the Renaissance is followed by a gallery of treasured works focusing on the most popular Italian art, from Giotto's frescoes and Fra Angelico's delightful Annunciation, to Botticelli's willowy Venuses, that ceiling of Michelangelo's and the master of Venetian painting, Titian.
"[An] unusual meditation on sex, death, art, and Jewishness. . . . Weber weaves in musings on his own sexual and religious experiences, creating a freewheeling psychoanalytic document whose approach would surely delight the doctor, even if its conclusions might surprise him." --New Yorker "Freud's Trip to Orvieto is at once profound and wonderfully diverse, and as gripping as any detective story. Nicholas Fox Weber mixes psychoanalysis, art history, and the personal with an intricacy and spiritedness that Freud himself would have admired." --John Banville, author of The Sea and The Blue Guitar "This is an ingenious and fascinating reading of Freud's response to Signorelli's frescoes at Orvieto. It is also a meditation on Jewish identity, and on masculinity, memory, and the power of the image. It is filled with intelligence, wit, and clear-eyed analysis not only of the paintings themselves, but how we respond to them in all their startling sexuality and invigorating beauty." --Colm T ib n, author of Brooklyn and Nora Webster After a visit to the cathedral at Orvieto in Italy, Sigmund Freud deemed Luca Signorelli's frescoes the greatest artwork he'd ever encountered; yet, a year later, he couldn't recall the artist's name. When the name came back to him, the images he had so admired vanished from his mind's eye. This is known as the "Signorelli parapraxis" in the annals of Freudian psychoanalysis and is a famous example from Freud's own life of his principle of repressed memory. What was at the bottom of this? There have been many theories on the subject, but Nicholas Fox Weber is the first to study the actual Signorelli frescoes for clues. What Weber finds in these extraordinary Renaissance paintings provides unexpected insight into this famously confounding incident in Freud's biography. As he sounds the depths of Freud's feelings surrounding his masculinity and Jewish identity, Weber is drawn back into his own past, including his memories of an adolescent obsession with a much older woman. Freud's Trip to Orvieto is an intellectual mystery with a very personal, intimate dimension. Through rich illustrations, Weber evokes art's singular capacity to provoke, destabilize, and enchant us, as it did Freud, and awaken our deepest memories, fears, and desires. Nicholas Fox Weber is the director of the Josef and Anni Albers Foundation and author of fourteen books, including biographies of Balthus and Le Corbusier. He has written for the New Yorker, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, Le Monde, ARTnews, Town & Country, and Vogue, among other publications.
Leonardo da Vinci was the epitome of the Renaissance humanist ideal, a logical polymath of epic proportions who excelled and had interests not just in art but in invention, anatomy, architecture, engineering, literature, mathematics, music, science, astronomy and more. His oeuvre is astounding and he is rightly famed for his masterpieces of painting such as the Mona Lisa and The Last Supper, and his astonishingly technical and graceful drawings. The phenomenon that was Leonardo would not of course have flourished to such an extent had it not been for the patronage and sponsorship of the Medici family, who commissioned a large proportion of the art and architecture of the era and fostered a fertile climate for creativity. This sumptuous new book offers a broader view of this master artist in the context of this environment, alongside the work of other key artists who benefited from the Medicis, from Brunelleschi through Donatello to Michelangelo and Raphael.
Very few artists can claim such lasting and worldwide fame and importance as Michelangelo Buonarroti (1475-1564). The nickname il divino ("the divine one") has been applied to him since the 1530s right through to today: his achievements as a sculptor, painter, and architect remain unparalleled and his creations are among the best-known artworks in the world. This Bibliotheca Universalis edition is devoted to the artist's graphic work, a testimony to his masterly command of line, form, and detail, from architectural studies to anatomically perfect figures. The book brings together some of the artist's finest drawings from museums and collections around the world as well as some of his own notes and revisions, offering stunning proximity not only to the ambition and scope of Michelangelo's practice but also his working process. A chapter with a compilation of newly attributed and reattributed drawings provides further insights into Michelangelo's varied graphic oeuvre and the ongoing exploration of his genius.
Part of a series of exciting and luxurious Flame Tree Notebooks. Combining high-quality production with magnificent fine art, the covers are printed on foil in five colours, embossed, then foil stamped. And they're powerfully practical: a pocket at the back for receipts and scraps, two bookmarks and a solid magnetic side flap. These are perfect for personal use and make a dazzling gift. This example features Leonardo Da Vinci: Detail of the Head of the Virgin.
Palladio (1508-80) combined classical restraint with constant inventiveness to produce one of the most beautiful, and easily the most influential, series of buildings in the history of art.
In this brilliantly incisive study, Professor Ackerman sets Palladio in the context of his age - the great Humanist era of Michelangelo and Raphael, Titian and Veronese - examines each of the wonderful villas, churches and palaces in turn, and tries to penetrate to the heart of the Palladian miracle. Palladio's theoretical writings are important and illuminating, he suggests, yet they can never do justice to the intense intuitive skills of 'a magician of light and colour'. Indeed, as the fine photographs in this book reveal, Palladio was 'as sensual, as skilled in visual alchemy as any Venetian painter of his time', and his countless imitators have usually captured the details, but not the essence, of his supreme style. There are buildings all the way from Philadelphia to St. Petersburg which bear witness to Palladio's 'permanent place in the making of architecture', yet he richly deserves also to be seen on his own terms; this masterly introduction to a master architect does just that.
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