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POWER OF ART, THE de Simon Schama
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POWER OF ART, THE (original: 2006; edição: 2012)

de Simon Schama (Autor)

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485537,765 (4.18)10
Focusing on eight iconic works of art, this series reveals the history of visual imagination through the ages. A combination of reconstruction, photography and storytelling transport the viewer back to the intense moments when great works were conceived and born: the murderous, messianic world of Baroque Rome; opulent, parvenu Amsterdam; paranoid, revolutionary Paris; Victorian England suffocating beneath riches and righteousness; the madhouses and brothels of Provence; the carnage of civil war Spain; 1950s New York, caught between Cold War jitters and Manhattan glitter. In each place, a great artist is backed into a corner, facing a crisis, given a chance to confound his rivals, enemies and critics one more time.… (mais)
Membro:Dr.JCD
Título:POWER OF ART, THE
Autores:Simon Schama (Autor)
Informação:Random House (2012)
Coleções:Sua biblioteca
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The Power of Art de Simon Schama (2006)

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Exibindo 5 de 5
a little over the top. not enough opinion about the illustrated works. it's not very helpful to talk about work you can't see. i could barely lift this book. ( )
  mahallett | Nov 18, 2012 |
I debated over and over whether to give this book three stars or four, and finally decided on the latter. Unlike some of the other reviewers, I read this as a stand-alone book, not a companion piece to the PBS series of the same name, as I'm not sure that I'd be able to stand Schama's endless attempts to dramatize and eulogize everything, implying that there is somehow meaning in even the most minute detail of the canvas, not the mention the personal lives of the artists.

Schama devotes forty or fifty pages a piece to eight artists presented in chronological order: Caravaggio, Bernini, Rembrandt, David, Turner, Van Gogh, Picasso, and Rothko. The text is interlarded with the most sumptuous full-plate color representations of some of the artists' most well-known and recognized work. One of the biggest advantages of the book is that, while technical aspects of the individual pieces of art are discussed, they are not put in a vacuum: Schama simultaneously emphasizes cultural, political, and social factors which facilitate a greater and fuller understanding of what he's talking about.

Depending on the reader (or, so I hear, the viewer of the eponymous PBS series), you will find Schama's prepossessing gregariousness and endless apotheosizing somewhat disconcerting. I certainly did. But at the same time, I recognize that if this is what it takes to get someone who has never previously cared about art into a museum to leave astounded and wanting to come back, then it has ultimately performed its job quite nicely. Introductory art educators or those who wish to gain a fundamental familiarity with the above artists will benefit most from this book. But those who already have this knowledge, as well as how the biographical information and the artwork interact with one another, will learn precious little. I must say, though, that the dozens upon dozens of color plates make the book well worth its $50 price tag (though from the looks of things, it's available for less than half that on Amazon). ( )
1 vote kant1066 | Oct 14, 2011 |
Excellent introduction to the works and lives of the eight artists starring in this book. Brilliant erudition exposed in lively writing. A very good way to make your start in art history.
Some critical remarks: it seems that for Schama a work of art is particularly powerful if the artist puts much of his (her?) own experience in it. Is a powerful work of art the same thing as "[the] Power of Art"? What about works by artists from Antiquity or Middle Ages? If the expression of personal (emotional)experience is absent, can a work of art still be powerful? I would have liked a little bit more of general reflections in a book with such a title. Even if this would mean trespassing on the territory of aesthetics...
The different chapters could be published as independent booklets or essays. This is probably the consequence of the initial nature of "Simon Schama's Power of Art" - a TV series. But in editing the text for book publication some rewriting could have been done making some more cross-references and unifying thus a little bit more the fascinating subject matter of this book.
The reproductions are very fine and well-placed next to the text they are illustrating. ( )
1 vote JanWillemNoldus | Jul 21, 2008 |
excellent writing, beautiful reproductions of artwork ( )
  stevenj | Jul 27, 2007 |
This is one of the most accessible and illuminating art books ever written. Produced in conjunction with an 8 part BBC series, the book devotes a chapter each to Caravaggio, Bernini, Rembrandt, David, Turner, Van Gogh, Picasso, and Rothko. Simon Schama gives us lively descriptions of the personal and historical contexts in which these eight men created their most powerful masterpieces. Even people who have never been art history students will find something of interest here. ( )
  literarysarah | Mar 9, 2007 |
Exibindo 5 de 5
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Focusing on eight iconic works of art, this series reveals the history of visual imagination through the ages. A combination of reconstruction, photography and storytelling transport the viewer back to the intense moments when great works were conceived and born: the murderous, messianic world of Baroque Rome; opulent, parvenu Amsterdam; paranoid, revolutionary Paris; Victorian England suffocating beneath riches and righteousness; the madhouses and brothels of Provence; the carnage of civil war Spain; 1950s New York, caught between Cold War jitters and Manhattan glitter. In each place, a great artist is backed into a corner, facing a crisis, given a chance to confound his rivals, enemies and critics one more time.

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