Saturday, June 11, 2011

Saturday Salon: A note on a nice art book find - an unexpected treat.

Yesterday at Barnes and Noble, I picked up a very nice little art book in trade paperback format: THE IMPRESSIONISTS by Diana Newal, part of an Art in Detail series, published by Art Metro Books, NY. This was on a sales table for five bucks and stupid me, I left behind THE RENAISSANCE - also in Art in Detail mode - and was already having second thoughts when we were back inside the car. But didn't feel strong enough about it to jump back out in the heat. A dumb non-move on my part.

The thing that first caught my eye about THE IMPRESSIONISTS (other than it's about one of my favorite schools of painting) was that the book has dye cut openings which focus on parts of the painting in close detail alongside short explanations of what the artist was up to. There are also succinct sentences talking about technique which is fascinating to me - always.

Newal concentrates on 20 different paintings and various artists, i.e. Pissaro, Monet, Renoir, Degas, Morisot, etc. with brief comments and explanations. The book very much reminds me of the always wonderful Eyewitness books, just much less bulky. I love this sort of thing. One, because it's clever and two, because there's not a lot of mumbo-jumbo.

Far as I'm concerned art,in general, is to be understood, not made obtuse by deliberate and long-winded obfuscation. But maybe that's just me.

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