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Art for Dummies

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If you've always wanted to find out more about art but felt intimidated by the overeducated art world, then you've found the answer. Art For Dummies is the book that will have you and everyone you know clamoring outside the doors of your local museum. Thomas Hoving, former director of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, is credited with revolutionizing the Met, doubling If you've always wanted to find out more about art but felt intimidated by the overeducated art world, then you've found the answer. Art For Dummies is the book that will have you and everyone you know clamoring outside the doors of your local museum. Thomas Hoving, former director of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, is credited with revolutionizing the Met, doubling its size during his tenure, and bringing art to the masses. Let him bring art to you as well. In Art For Dummies, Thomas Hoving provides a how-to guide to the art world. First, he guides you through an introduction to art appreciation, pointing out the details that you've always noticed but have never been able to explain. Next, Hoving takes you on a ride through art history. (Have you ever regretted not taking those art history classes in school With Art For Dummies, you'll feel all caught up and ready to spar with the local intellectuals.) Hoving even includes a guide to the world's top art cities and centers, a listing that can help you prepare for your next artistic voyage. With this guide, you can discover where to go in order to see the greatest works of art, and you can also find out about hidden treasures in nearby art museums. You also get a great start for seeking out art with Hoving's lists of the greatest works of Western civilization, the most interesting artists, and the contemporary artists to watch. Don't wait another day to introduce yourself to the art world!


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If you've always wanted to find out more about art but felt intimidated by the overeducated art world, then you've found the answer. Art For Dummies is the book that will have you and everyone you know clamoring outside the doors of your local museum. Thomas Hoving, former director of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, is credited with revolutionizing the Met, doubling If you've always wanted to find out more about art but felt intimidated by the overeducated art world, then you've found the answer. Art For Dummies is the book that will have you and everyone you know clamoring outside the doors of your local museum. Thomas Hoving, former director of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, is credited with revolutionizing the Met, doubling its size during his tenure, and bringing art to the masses. Let him bring art to you as well. In Art For Dummies, Thomas Hoving provides a how-to guide to the art world. First, he guides you through an introduction to art appreciation, pointing out the details that you've always noticed but have never been able to explain. Next, Hoving takes you on a ride through art history. (Have you ever regretted not taking those art history classes in school With Art For Dummies, you'll feel all caught up and ready to spar with the local intellectuals.) Hoving even includes a guide to the world's top art cities and centers, a listing that can help you prepare for your next artistic voyage. With this guide, you can discover where to go in order to see the greatest works of art, and you can also find out about hidden treasures in nearby art museums. You also get a great start for seeking out art with Hoving's lists of the greatest works of Western civilization, the most interesting artists, and the contemporary artists to watch. Don't wait another day to introduce yourself to the art world!

30 review for Art for Dummies

  1. 4 out of 5

    CLM

    I have been thinking about this book all week due to Thomas Hoving's death last week. He was so enthusiastic about reaching a new audience and embraced the Dummies format despite being a very sophisticated individual. One of his charms (and I am sure he also had his critics) was his ability to engage with anyone. In conjunction with the launch of the book, he agreed to take a group of Barnes & Noble buyers (plus me, my then boss, and Mrs. Hoving) for a "If you only have an hour," tour of the Met I have been thinking about this book all week due to Thomas Hoving's death last week. He was so enthusiastic about reaching a new audience and embraced the Dummies format despite being a very sophisticated individual. One of his charms (and I am sure he also had his critics) was his ability to engage with anyone. In conjunction with the launch of the book, he agreed to take a group of Barnes & Noble buyers (plus me, my then boss, and Mrs. Hoving) for a "If you only have an hour," tour of the Metropolitan Museum in New York, then dinner with the group at Demarchelier Restaurant. It was a delightful evening!

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ana

    The book in and of itself was extremely informative,however, as is with art/music/food, etc., it is subjective to the personal taste of the Author. He delved on items he loved, and shared them with such relish! Truly a very relaxing, informative book.

  3. 5 out of 5

    J

    Honestly, I'm embarrassed by the cover...but it was $1 on a library cart so I scooped it up. I'm a sucker for an art book at a good price. Honestly, I'm embarrassed by the cover...but it was $1 on a library cart so I scooped it up. I'm a sucker for an art book at a good price.

  4. 4 out of 5

    William Schram

    Art for Dummies is a book in the popular series. It discusses the idea of building up your ‘eye’ for art and becoming a Connoisseur. So it talks about delving into the art world and provides plenty of samples and pieces. This is probably for the best since I don’t know what to look for in a piece of art. I am quite the uncultured swine in this case. I can tell you that something looks cool, or interesting, but that is about it. Take the Mona Lisa for example. All I can see is a picture of a Smil Art for Dummies is a book in the popular series. It discusses the idea of building up your ‘eye’ for art and becoming a Connoisseur. So it talks about delving into the art world and provides plenty of samples and pieces. This is probably for the best since I don’t know what to look for in a piece of art. I am quite the uncultured swine in this case. I can tell you that something looks cool, or interesting, but that is about it. Take the Mona Lisa for example. All I can see is a picture of a Smiling Woman. Other people will see different things, and that is what makes it art I suppose. As with all books in the Dummies series, to begin it defines the topic it deals with. What exactly is art? As such, art is confusing to many since it is so subjective. You can have art that is feces on a canvas, though that is more of a joke of mine than anything. Along the way, we are treated to some art history that starts with the Lascaux Caves and goes through the ages up to the modern period. The author, Thomas Hoving, gives examples of each period that he mentions and each area of interest. So let’s take Mesopotamia for example; he talks about Sumer, Akkad, Lagash, Assyria, and Neo-Babylonia. Hoving gives the dates that these people were making art and in power and talks a bit about what the pieces were made of and what they look like. Not all of the pieces mentioned have images, so when he talks about a statue found in the city of Nippur that is made of Gypsum and inlaid with shell and precious stones you have to use your imagination a bit. Once Hoving gets into the Renaissance Period he begins to name the artists that made the pieces and talks about spotting fakes and replicas over originals. He makes Bullet point lists about everything, so it is pretty easy to take in. So if you ever wanted to learn how to do those things or become a collector of some kind, this book is a good point to begin at. I mean, the author even states that the best way to be good at looking at art is to look at a lot of art. It makes a sort of tautology, but this makes sense. I mean, the best way to get good at reading is to read a lot and to examine what you have read.

  5. 5 out of 5

    AcnologiaDream

    insulting

  6. 4 out of 5

    Julia

    Mixed review here. As a "what is art about anyway?" treatise it is completely useless, unless you like inadequate generalizations about art types, periods and movements (and the overuse of the word "marvelous"), or self-serving anecdotes about how important Hoving is to the art world. The works he goes on and on about are not illustrated, and the two sections of color illustrations are not good quality reproductions. The rest are muddy, small B/W images that do not do his words justice, and there Mixed review here. As a "what is art about anyway?" treatise it is completely useless, unless you like inadequate generalizations about art types, periods and movements (and the overuse of the word "marvelous"), or self-serving anecdotes about how important Hoving is to the art world. The works he goes on and on about are not illustrated, and the two sections of color illustrations are not good quality reproductions. The rest are muddy, small B/W images that do not do his words justice, and therefore undermine all his assertions. However, if you are in the need of a handy guide on what to see in the best repositories of art worldwide, this is the book for you. He has good tips on visiting museums (your first stop should be the gift shop's postcard section, because the museum's "greatest hits" are likely to be illustrated there and if it's a foreign country they are excellent communications aids when trying to find the real thing). His "ten most interesting artists and why" is also a good summary for the people who are likely to be attracted to this book (although I quibble about half of who he included on the "ten contemporary artists to watch" list: about the only one he got right was Jenny Saville, who was just coming up and has proven to be a WOW artist. The others were old news even when the book was written and some had actually fallen out of favor 10 years previously). If he had just considered who his audience was and not tried to be comprehensive, and if he denied his overbearing personality, this would be a good addition to the "dummies" series. Now I have to get "Art History for Dummies" to see how the author did.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Anna

    Really good as an art history reference book; I made the mistake of trying to read it cover-to-cover as a make-shift art history course and got bogged down after the first half or so. I think I'd like it better if I had more patience for reading it in chunks and using it as more of a reference than a "story" of art. Really good as an art history reference book; I made the mistake of trying to read it cover-to-cover as a make-shift art history course and got bogged down after the first half or so. I think I'd like it better if I had more patience for reading it in chunks and using it as more of a reference than a "story" of art.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Shishir

    Good reference book - skimmed through it - perhaps an overkill if you just wanted a historic perspective

  9. 4 out of 5

    June

    Just skimmed this.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Leah

    One glaring omission: Georgia O'Keeffe. Arguably the most well-known female artist of all time, she is not mentioned anywhere in this book. One glaring omission: Georgia O'Keeffe. Arguably the most well-known female artist of all time, she is not mentioned anywhere in this book.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Radiant Lotus

    I liked it, and the author imparted his enthusiasm about his faves (which were not always mine)

  12. 4 out of 5

    Carol

    A good quick reference to find out what and where an artwork is located. It is not good as an indepth reference of course.

  13. 4 out of 5

    R

    Not really rating this book; read it to become better at trivia. It served that purpose. Marinetti was the founder of futurism, for example.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Annie Naughton

  15. 4 out of 5

    Msbookworm

  16. 4 out of 5

    Lisa

  17. 4 out of 5

    Esteban Candia

  18. 5 out of 5

    Nila Sj

  19. 5 out of 5

    Carsten Buus

  20. 5 out of 5

    Soghr

  21. 5 out of 5

    James Rivers

  22. 4 out of 5

    NANCY EARLE

  23. 5 out of 5

    Paul Richard Barber

  24. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Messick

  25. 4 out of 5

    Giorgi Burduli

  26. 4 out of 5

    Hajir Almahdi

  27. 5 out of 5

    Deborah Freeman

  28. 5 out of 5

    Andrea

  29. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer Warnock

  30. 5 out of 5

    Lv Niño

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