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81. RICHTER 858
$3.97 list($18.95)
82. Expedition: Being an Account in
$47.25 $41.99 list($75.00)
83. Chihuly
$15.61 $13.99 list($22.95)
84. The Complete Etchings of Rembrandt
$24.95 list($49.50)
85. Diego Rivera
$18.90 list($30.00)
86. Bouguereau
$8.10 $5.98 list($9.00)
87. The Curious Sofa: A Pornographic
$49.77 list($79.00)
88. Sophie Calle: Did You See Me?
$25.00 $16.74
89. The Daily Practice of Painting:
$15.72 $14.97 list($24.95)
90. Faeries: 25th Anniversary Edition
$59.85 list($95.00)
91. Colorado, 1870-2000
$75.00 $61.99
92. Pictures: Robert Mapplethorpe
$55.00
93. George Inness and the Science
$17.98 $7.34
94. Americas Wilderness: The Photographs
$31.50 list($50.00)
95. Jean-Antoine Houdon : Sculptor
$77.40 $75.47
96. Francisco Toledo: Whitechapel
$39.95
97. Dream Race: The Search for the
$32.97 $24.94 list($49.95)
98. Thomas Ruff Nudes
$10.17 $9.45 list($14.95)
99. The Secret Life of Salvador Dali
$21.00 list($35.00)
100. De Kooning : An American Master

81. RICHTER 858
by Gerhard Richter, David Breskin, Dave Hickey, Klaus Kertess
list price: $175.00
our price: $175.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0971861005
Catlog: Book (2002-10-15)
Publisher: Shifting Foundation
Sales Rank: 306179
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Gerhard Richter's abstractions are profound and beautiful, though perplexing. After all these years, they still present a curious challenge: what, exactly, are they? RICHTER 858 explores this question by focusing on one suite of extraordinary pictures painted in 1999, soon after his return to work after a silence caused by a stroke. Both investigation and celebration, this book brings together image, music and text in a uniquely compelling way: contributors include the great guitarist and composer Bill Frisell, two sharp-eyed critics, and a baker's dozen of prominent, award-winning poets. Housed in an aluminum slipcase, this lavish, oversized volume features the largest, most sumptuous, and most accurate reproductions of any Richter work. The eight paintings of the suite are shown at more than half-scale, and also, quite untraditionally, presented unbound on heavy paper in a pocket at the back of the book--allowing readers to mix, match, and re-present the work for themselves outside the confines of the printed volume. Forty details from the paintings are also reproduced in large-format, accompanied by the poems and texts. These brilliant passages--rich in incident and intervention, and ranging from the coolly sublime to the loudly riotous--make fascinating pictures in their own right. Additionally, a double gatefold opens to show all eight paintings in panoramic view. In essence, RICHTER 858 presents an elegant, if raucous, meeting ground for our most important contemporary artist and a diverse chorus of American music, poetry, and criticism.

Includes poetry by Richard Howard, Jorie Graham, Robert Hass, Ann Lauterbach, Dean Young, Brenda Hillman, James McManus, Michael Palmer, Connie Deanovich, David Breskin, Paul Hoover, Edward Hirsch andW.S. Di Piero.

Edited by David Breskin.
Essays by Dave Hickey and Klaus Kertess.
An Audio CD of music by Bill Frisell.

Aluminum slipcase with white, black and red corrugated box and music CD, 120 pages, 68 color

Publisher: The Shifting Foundation in association with SFMOMA ... Read more

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars A plethora of pleasures
You don't have to be an afficionado of contemporary poetry, or an art lover, to appreciate the many delights housed within the aluminum slip case of this work. But if you happen to be either, or both, this book is a must.

The "book" has, in this case, evolved well beyond the concept of an art tome. The joining of music, poetry and lovingly accurate reproductions under one cover makes the circumnavigation of this opus is a particularly rich eexperience. Which is not to say that listening to the music , or dipping into one poem, is not an entirely satisfying moment by itself.

Be prepared, however: this gesamtwerk is big, and will not fit into an ordinary bookcase! The paintings being reproduced to scale has dictated the extra large format, but the extraordinarily accurate pictorial results are worth the extra weight.

5-0 out of 5 stars Just when you thought realism was dead
This is a gorgeous book by a man who in the future will be credited with debunking all the art critics who since the 1950s have been shouting to themselves that Realism is dead, or the ones that still shout "painting is dead." Gerhard Richter breaks all the rules of "being an artist." He has worked in a variety of styles, refusing to produce a "style" as often artists are supposed to do. In his ealy photorealistic -paintings Richter copied ordinary, found images onto canvas, but gave them an indistinct appearance. Again, by working directly from photographs, he manages to debunk all the criticism that such techniques often bring. This subversive realism is now more evident than ever, in these later, almost fuzzy works that still manage to knock the visual senses as if shouting: "Long Live Painting - Long Live Realism!"

5-0 out of 5 stars A Feast for Eyes and Ears
I've only recently become acquainted with the range of Gerhard Richter's work, but the series of eight abstract paintings which are being celebrated here are enough to justify his reputation for me, and the sheer richness and resolution of their presentation in this book is of a standard I've never come across anywhere. Elegant, sensuous and gorgeous, this is more than a 'typical' art book in manners large and small; includes insightful essays by writers like Dave Hickey, poetry, and a CD by Bill Frisell with a string trio that's a lot more quirky and edgy than his recent stuff, in a good way (no banjos). The book's editor, David Breskin, has done an amazing job - the aluminum slipcase is a pretty sharp touch, too.

5-0 out of 5 stars Much more than another coffee table book
Unfortunately I haven't yet made it to SFMOMA to see the Gerhard Richter exhibit. However, my much anticipated copy of Richter 858 arrived in the mail today, and to say that it didn't disappoint is an understatement. I had initially been a little wary about getting it. It comes with an aluminum slipcase and poetry and an audio CD with music composed by the brilliant Bill Frisell, and while some might find this sort of presentation lush, I, being somewhat of a purist, was afraid these inclusions would be nothing more than bells and whistles-basically a lot of noise to give voice to a suite of paintings that, according to any good Kantian, should be able to stand on its own. Boy was I wrong. People who know me know that I don't like fuss, but even the worry about scratching the aluminum slipcase, or maneuvering the book's awkward size and bulk, or the guilt for not using gloves to turn these impeccably produced pages, couldn't dampen the sheer transport I felt as I drunk in art and text and Bill's passionate and daring compositions with equal abandon. I've been reluctant to embrace anything multimedia, but Richter 858 may have just pushed me into the 21st century. ... Read more


82. Expedition: Being an Account in Words and Artwork of the 2358 A.D. Voyage to Darwin IV
by Wayne Douglas Barlowe
list price: $18.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0894806297
Catlog: Book (1990-12-01)
Publisher: Workman Publishing
Sales Rank: 341684
Average Customer Review: 4.71 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (17)

5-0 out of 5 stars An incredible voyage!
I'm a fan of science fiction, but before reading this book, hadn't been too exposed to sci-fi art. Barlowe is a gifted host in the fantastic world of science fiction art. I read this book over a period of three or four days, and couldn't wait to get back to it. The pictures are amazing, and the story is gripping. Barlowe is an incredible artist and storyteller, and I hope to see more of his work in the future! Highly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent faux-exobiology field guide!
This book is amazing and far outpaces the nearest competition in the 'lets imagine if' category of illustrated science fiction. barlowe's artwork is center-stage and exquisitely detailed. my only complaint is that the book should have been at least 3 times larger...i wanted more creatures and siphonovores! maybe barlowe will read this and get to work on a re-visit to darwin or another new planet (hint hint!)

5-0 out of 5 stars Settle down,It's not meant to be real...
All these people saying that this is a well illustrated but poorly written book shouldn't take it so serioulsy, who cares if the inhabitants are unbelievable. It's a fiction book, none of these reviewers could come up with anything half as imaginitive as Wayne Barlowe... consult a scientist or biologist, yeah right...it's not real.......just have fun with it.

3-0 out of 5 stars Catching up with Barlowe
Having just purchased a new copy of the classic BARLOWE'S GUIDE TO EXTRATERRESTRIALS, I felt it necessary to catch up on some of the incomparable Wayne D. Barlowe's more recent work. I leafed through several books and settled on EXPEDITION, primarily for my interest in its subject matter (having many graduate hours of zoology under my belt). I see that from the late '80s-onward, Barlowe has been handling both art and writing chores, I assume in order to make his projects more personal and satisfying. Certainly, the man is an immensely talented artist, but I feel that he should have worked with established authors and/or scientists in order to give EXPEDITION more substance, structure, and technical basis.

Regarding the story, I feel that Barlowe blew it from the start with the premise that the expedition to the planet Darwin IV was only possible due to the fact that Earth had already made contact with a sort of "sponsor" alien species, the Yma. If that's the case, then why aren't we learning more about the Yma instead of the inhabitants of Darwin IV? Detailing Earth's first contact with another intelligent life-form sounds more interesting to me than the study of an unknown planet. A tighter approach would have been to drop the Yma and then have all of the technology be Earth-based (this IS the 24th century, after all).

I definitely feel that when you're theorizing on alien biology, all rules, such as we know them, can stand by the wayside. For a detailed project such as EXPEDITION, however, there should be some logical restraint. While this book contains some very clever biological concepts, such as the Amoebic Sea, Emperor Sea-Strider, Rime-Runner, and Gyrosprinter, they are brought down a notch by the questionable equilibrium of the Daggerwrist population, the feeding and locomotion of the Tundra Plow, and the seemingly inefficient maturation of the Forest Slider. But of course, we've found some organisms on our own planet that are almost as odd, so who's to say what we may find on another?

4-0 out of 5 stars Superb artwork but he should consult a scientist
While there can be no quibbling with the quality and beauty of the artwork seen in this book, W D Barlowe would do well to consult a scientist or two (preferably a biologist, a chemist and a physicist) to get a handle on what is physically possible and what is not.
Certainly a planet full of liquivorous predators would be inefficient and covered in meter-thick piles of decomposing bodies.
Even very massive creatures would be unlikely to use skids for part of their locomotion when they also have developed legs.

The bottom line is that this is a beautifully illustrated, if poorly concieved and written book. It surpasses most soft science fiction in terms of believability based on the merits of the artwork alone. ... Read more


83. Chihuly
by Donald B. Kuspit
list price: $75.00
our price: $47.25
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810963736
Catlog: Book (1999-04-01)
Publisher: Abrams
Sales Rank: 27566
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

For more than 30 years, Dale Chihuly's work, principally in glass (but occasionally including such unconventional media as neon and ice), has challenged traditional distinctions between craft and art. Chihuly's oeuvre is notable for its vibrancy of color, the boldness of its shape and execution, and, in recent years, its studied mimicry of natural forms, from cacti to seaweed and jellyfish. The scale of these blown-glass works ranges from pieces suitable for a coffee table to vast hanging chandeliers that drape from ceiling to floor or shoot up like Christmas trees from below. At times, Chihuly's work is merely decorative, a collection of brightly colored, softened glass forms that resemble melted Christmas tree ornaments, sea anemones, squash, wriggling eels, and other organic shapes. The dizzying abundance of work created by Chihuly himself and his students-cum-assistants at his Pilchuk Glass School, and the enormously successful marketing of this art (Pilchuk, located near Seattle, is open to visitors), has lead some viewers to an overfamiliarity with the work. But art critics Donald Kuspit and Jack Cowart argue for its originality and importance in their introductory essays. (Perhaps overly so: Cowart compares the pieces to Matisse, Turner, and Walt Disney's Fantasia, while Kuspit evokes Freud, symbolism, and T.S. Eliot to argue for the works' seriousness of intent.) Even those readers familiar with Chihuly will be impressed with the capacious variety of form and function--candy bowls to chandeliers--captured in over 280 pages of photographs that exhaustively chart the artist's creations, along with the two essays mentioned above and a biographical time-line. For Chihuly fans who may not be able to afford a Chihuly original of their own, this book is the next best thing. --John Longenbaugh ... Read more

Reviews (4)

5-0 out of 5 stars Hypnotizing and beautiful
I was introduced to Chihuly through a special on my local PBS station many years ago. I couldn't remember his name, but I always remembered that he was the brilliant man with the unorthodox style. His vision and his artistic talents are immense. This book is absolutely mesmerizing and gorgeous with page after page of color photos. From the "Chihuly Over Venice" project to his designs for the set of the opera "Pelléas et Mélisande" for the Seattle Opera. This book truly is a feast for the eyes and the soul. Chihuly is a master of glass and this book proves it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Truly a worthwhile book
Among the thousands of art books on the market, Kuspit's exhaustive look at Dale Chihuly's career in glass is a bargain for the Amazon price. Filled with gorgeous color photos of Chihuly's unique work, and intelligently written, this book will grace any art lover's shelf.

5-0 out of 5 stars As Alice in Wonderland!
From the front page to the end this book you will be mesmorized. For those familiar with Maestro Chihuly's work this is a bible, for those that just come to learn about his creations this book is a must have. I feel that Dale Chihuly is one of the most talented artists of this century. His vision and creativity are so outstanding in a world of modern art sometimes too bare and conceptual. The book is an array of picture after picture of Chihuly's work. Splendid details can inspire from a decorator to a fashion designer, every page is a microcosmo of creativity. If I had to travel the universe with just a suitcase full of books, this is absolutly one of them.

5-0 out of 5 stars Critic Kuspit provides a superb overview of Chihuly's art.
Noted critic Donald Kuspit has written what is perhaps the best essay about the work of Seattle artist Dale Chihuly. Those familiar with the burgeoning studio glass movement may nonetheless wonder about the use of glass as a medium for art; Kuspit forcefully argues that Chihuly has pioneered a new art form that is in many ways an extension of traditional art and in some ways superior to current art styles. Kuspit shows how Chihuly's work gives fresh artistic meaning to traditional aspects of the glassmakers craft such as fragility, transparency, etc. The book is lavishly illustrated with color images of all aspects of the artist's work, including the early pivotal neon and ice sculptures and the recent "Chihuly Over Venice" project, and concludes with a detailed and illustrated chronology. ... Read more


84. The Complete Etchings of Rembrandt : Reproduced in Original Size
by Rembrandt Harmenszoon Van Rijn, Gary Schwartz, Rembrandt Van Rijn, Gary D.(Editor) Schwartz
list price: $22.95
our price: $15.61
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0486281817
Catlog: Book (1994-10-13)
Publisher: Dover Publications
Sales Rank: 100202
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

Over 300 works—portraits, landscapes, biblical scenes, allegorical and mythological pictures and more—reproduced in full size directly from a rare collection of etchings famed for its pristine condition, fresh, clean impressions, rich contrasts and brilliant printing, With detailed captions, a chronology of Rembrandt’s life and etchings, a discussion of the technique of etching in his time and an excellent bibliography.
... Read more

Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars Superb publication
Although budget-priced, this edition is a winner, in my opinion. All of Rembrandt's etchings are reproduced on a heavy-stock paper that is of the proper degree of shine necessary to bring out the full, crisp nuances of the etchings. The result are vividly life-like etchings that show all their intricate details. Faces and people come alive, almost jumping out of the page. The Dover people were right in thinking that only a shiny, heavy-stock paper could bring out the full details of the etchings, to create reproductions that are as closely realistic as the original impressions. Also, almost all of the impressions seem of the proper degree of sharpness and darkness necessary to bring out their details. My only problem is that the book is somewhat heavy and bulky, but this is the price to pay for the heavy-stock paper needed for excellent reproductions, each of the same size as the originals. There are also some extra inserts in the book that reproduce in full size several etchings that are too big to fit life-size within the dimensions of the book. The inclusion of these inserts is considerate on the part of the authors, showing their dedication to bringing out the full artistry of the etchings, and ensuring that the common budget book-buyer has full access to these etchings in their most vivid, almost museum-like form. ... Read more


85. Diego Rivera
by Pete Hamill
list price: $49.50
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810932342
Catlog: Book (1999-09-01)
Publisher: Harry N Abrams
Sales Rank: 253414
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

In another life, before becoming one of the best known and most popular journalists in New York and the author of the bestselling memoir A Drinking Life, Pete Hamill studied art on the GI Bill in Mexico City. Upon seeing the monumental work of José Clemente Orozco, however, he abruptly lost his nerve: "It seemed an act of self-delusion to try to be a painter."

After 44 years, Hamill has found a way to integrate his early affair with art, his lifelong love of Mexico, and his narrative gifts in this riveting and lushly illustrated book on Diego Rivera, Mexico's best-known, widely loved muralist. Hamill's text, he says, was completed before the publication of Patrick Marnham's Dreaming with His Eyes Open: A Life of Diego Rivera. This one is less scholarly but respectably researched, and Hamill's fervent opinions on which of Rivera's works are worthy and which are the sad effluvia of a Communist Party hack are remarkably persuasive. Hamill's esthetic judgment has led him to avoid reproducing any second-rate clunkers. He has chosen the great murals, paintings, and drawings that suit the godlike stature of this outsize artist who lied, cheated, womanized, and evaded responsibility his entire life, but who worked like a demon in the service of his art.

Rivera's shabby genteel childhood; his flight to France during the 10-year Mexican Revolution, during which nearly a tenth of his countrymen died; his callous abandonment of his first wife; his ugly political gambits and high-flown society contacts; his ultimately sad relationships with both men and women--Hamill weaves it all into a fantastic read. The book is not as balanced as Dreaming with His Eyes Open, but is nonetheless a passionate first look at an artist whose complicated life will probably still be examined decades from now. --Peggy Moorman ... Read more

Reviews (5)

5-0 out of 5 stars The life and the art. First rate!
Prior to reading Hamill's bio of Rivera I had read some of another, published the same year. I'm not sure why I was so cool to the book or why it left me irritated. But that would have been the end of my investigation of Rivera's life if I hadn't come across Hamill's book by accident.
I read a couple of pages and was hooked. Hamill is known to me as a fine journalist, editor and novelist but an art biographer? Yes! Yes! This book is a pleasure to read. The prose is clear, clean and engaging, yet it packs a lot of information. And what's the point of writing about a major painter and not printing any of his work? This book is filled with glorious, excellent color reproductions covering Rivera's entire life work. Hamill is not afraid to offer judgments but I thought they were fair and relevant. This is a solid piece of work. As a young man Hamill wanted to be a painter and went to Mexico City to study. He later lived in the city as a journalist. So there are many years of the love of Mexico and art behind this book.
If you want to know more about the Mexican revolution, the art scene in Paris around the years of WWI (Rivera accused Picasso of stealing ideas from him) how Mexico nurtured and esteemed its artists, and much more, read this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Coffee Table Material
If you admire Rivera, buy this book. It sits on our coffee table and is very alluring. It makes a great gift for any fan of this extraordinary artist.

Submitted by the author of "I'm Living Your Dream Life."

5-0 out of 5 stars Blends both the highs and lows in his struggle
Unforgettable reading, Diego Rivera is a vivid, emotionally written biography of the famous Mexican artist, mural painter, and Communist activist Diego Rivera (1886-1957). Biographer Pete Hamill narration of Rivera's remarkable life is enhanced with Rivera's great works of art both in full color replications and through black-and-white photographs. With an informed and informative text more heavily weighted toward relating Rivera's life story than simply being a showcase of Rivera's great murals, Diego Rivera blends both the highs and lows in his struggle through life for meaning against a background of turbulent politics, as well as the overwhelming messages of his art.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Political/Social/Artistic Biography of Diego Rivera
Diego Rivera, the man, is not nearly as well known as Diego Rivera, the magnificant muralist. Pete Hamill's biography will change all that. I have been a fan of Hamill's journalistic writing since 1970, so I was surprised at first when I saw that he had authored this book. Then I learned in the introduction that Hamill had studied painting in Mexico City as a young man, before giving it up for writing. So he has a unique perspective to share with us.

Diego Rivera's art soars above his own life. He was very self-centered and almost always did what was best for him and his art career. To cover up for his lapses, he loved to tell stories to make himself seem very grand. For example, although he was out of Mexico for almost the entire 10 years of the Revolution (where 10 percent of the population died), he claimed to have fought in it.

Perhaps his least desirable quality was the way he treated women. It seems like he was attracted to hurting those he loved, and was always looking for the newest conquest. Although he was a physically unattractive man for most of his life (usually weighing over 300 pounds), he had a series of beautiful women as his wives and lovers, including famous motion picture actresses.

He was an important man in the Mexican Communist party, and later brought Trotsky to Mexico. Later, the shifts in doctrine involving Stalin led Rivera to be ousted from the party. No idealogue, he paid attention to the party about as well as he did to his wives. Yet near the end of his life, he begged his way back into the party.

Throughout his Communistic associations, he was delighted to work for wealthy capitalists . . . another indication that his career came first.

Near his death, he resumed his original Catholic faith, amazing almost everyone who knew him.

Although we think of him as the ultimate Mexican artist, he was classically trained in the Spanish style in Mexico and spent almost all of his early career in Europe. It was only the ending of the Revolution and the prospect of large mural commissions that lured him and other leading Mexican artists back to Mexico. Like the other artists, he had to learn how to paint murals.

Throughout the book, you will find your main reward -- gorgeous color reproductions of Rivera's most vivid work, along with beautiful black and white sketches, and photographs of Rivera at work and play.

The book's main weakness is that Hamill is no art historian. His discussions of the art are short and unimaginative. But he has strong opinions and does tell you what he likes (that which is reproduced -- new themes, new symbols and relatively less finished details) and that which he does not (that which is not reproduced here and Rivera's developments of earlier themes). So you will have to look at the work and figure out what you think about it without too much help from Hamill beyond describing the imagery. I especially encourage you to consider Rivera's cubist works. The book makes an interesting case for Picasso having lifted key ideas for some of his best work from Rivera.

Hamill does a fine job of giving a sense of the relentless pressure for revolution, the early optimism about the Revolution, and the descent into business as usual. I enjoyed learning more about the Mexican Revolution, as a result.

I was also glad to learn where Rivera's murals are so that I can see them in person. That's a great reason to visit Mexico!

Overcome your stalled thinking that great work makes a great person. Creating a good person may be more difficult than making great art. What do you think?

5-0 out of 5 stars A GENIUS'S STORY, WARTS AND ALL
Diego Rivera was a Communist, a lout, self-indulgent, slovenly, obese, greedy, an apostate, at times lazy, at other times driven and possessed, a bounder, a satyr, ingratiating, and, above all, a genius. There is no writer more equipped than the eminent Pete Hamill, student of art, diviner of human folly, to take us on this magnificent journey, separating glorious art from the invincible frailties of humans. It is a book that will live on, long into the 21st century. ... Read more


86. Bouguereau
by Fronia E. Wissman
list price: $30.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0876545827
Catlog: Book (1996-04-01)
Publisher: Pomegranate Communications
Sales Rank: 26064
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Best (and only) book-length Bouguereau in print
Wissman did a great job providing a fair and balanced view of French painter Bouguereau's career. And it's a good thing too! Everything else related to the artist is either out of print or a flimsy postcard book. How could this be? Well, the unfortunate stereotype of Bougeureau buffs is that they "don't know much about art but know what they like." It may be that many editors assume that if you like Bougeureau's paintings, you aren't the type to read a serious art book. I like to believe this is wrong. I enjoy Bougureau's art very much and am glad that someone published a reasonable paperback history and criticism of the artist. I hope that one day, others write similarly good books about other "forgotten" 19th century artists.

5-0 out of 5 stars Color reproductions are excellent
You wouldn't be ordering this book if you didn't already love Bouguereau, so rest assured that the reproductions are top notch, especially for a fairly inexpensive paperback.

5-0 out of 5 stars Art Book of the Century (and last two as well)
This is a lankmark book about the greatest painter of all time. Whereas it is easy to do write a book on over-hyped painters (such as Cezanne or Picasso) simply by rehashing other books, Wissman has written the first complete book of a great painter we almost know nothing about (except now).

This book contains large format pictures and an easy-to-read and informative biography. Highly recommended

5-0 out of 5 stars A superbly presented collection of artwork
Bouguereau by museum art exhibition curator and art history expert Fronia E. Wissman is a superbly presented collection of artwork underscored with thoughtful commentary showcasing one of the most simultaneously beloved and hated nineteenth-century French artists, Adolphe-William Bouguereau. His realistic, classic paintings of nude bathers, nymphs, young women and figures of mythology have a captivating, attention-calling quality that turns the head and the eye. His images are here displayed in full color photographs and the informative text recounts his life and enhances our understanding of the background to his masterpieces in this engaging and very highly recommended addition to personal and academic Art History Reference collections.

5-0 out of 5 stars Fine Art in Softbound
Lovely book. The biographic text is an easy read and the selections of Bouguereau's work illustrated here depict a good portayal of the artist. A great value of a fine art book in softbound form. ... Read more


87. The Curious Sofa: A Pornographic Work by Ogdred Weary
by Edward Gorey
list price: $9.00
our price: $8.10
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0151003076
Catlog: Book (1997-09-15)
Publisher: Harcourt
Sales Rank: 13924
Average Customer Review: 4.44 out of 5 stars
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Amazon.com

As the New York Times writes of Edward Gorey, "His satires (often of tawdry Victorian mysteries) are not mere commentaries on the manners and mores of a distant age; they are inventive narratives about evil adults, mischievous children, illicit lovers and improbable beasts." Or, in the case of The Curious Sofa, improbable furniture. As Gorey tells us on the cover, this is "a pornographic work" (pornographic horror, in fact) with a picture on every page. And yet there's nary a nipple (nor a drop of blood) in sight. (For those who want some extras to pass around there's a 10-copy assortment with The GashlycrumbTinies.) ... Read more

Reviews (16)

5-0 out of 5 stars Delightfully Wicked
The first Gorey book I've ever bought, and it's left me panting for more.

Subtitled "a pornographic work," The Curious Sofa it is indeed, but for what it leaves out. Readers won't find sex or violence on these pages, merely the titillation of the unseen.

Umm... mouth watering!

5-0 out of 5 stars The best dirty book I've ever read
The Curious Sofa is the best dirty book I've ever looked at or read. It is the tale of a sexual adventure gone wildly out of control. Ogdred Weary's prose reads rather like an erotic, almost-picaresque retelling of Gosford Park. It's astonishing, just how proper a fetishistic, sadomasochistic kink session can be when populated by upper-class folk (and a Old English Sheepdog).

The book is made even better by the artwork of Edward Gorey, which has more in common with the direction of Alfred Hitchcock than the in-your-face pictorials of Larry Flynt. But if you're a fan of Gorey, you know that already.

5-0 out of 5 stars Gerald did a terrible thing to Elsie with a saucepan....
Though definitely not for everyone, this is probably the creepiest little thing I've read in a LONG time, this being accomplished entirely by subtle insinuation and suggestion than anything concrete.

Pornographic work? Not exactly, if you are expecting the sort of thing all those spam e-mails promise. This is surrealism, enigmatic and dreamlike... the graphic imagery is limited to bizarrely posed and leering maybe-unclothed/maybe-not cartoon figures tastefully obscured behind monstrously large ornamental urns, twisted naked tree limbs, and imposing bamboo screens, with such captions as "That evening in the library Scylla, one of the guests who had certain anatomical peculiarities, demonstrated the 'Lithuanian Typewriter', assisted by Ronald and Rupert, two remarkably well-set-up young men from the village." Over and again through the "story" my reaction was "What the heck is THAT supposed to mean???" while taken together they imply something hideously and repugnantly barbaric and freakishly obscene, with the only possible conclusions (when they can be made at all) not matching the reactions of the characters, until the shocking conclusion where at last the characters react appropriately to an eerie situation that makes absolutely no sense whatsoever... making the entire experience that much more disconcerting.

This is the beauty of Edward Gory's surrealism. Though, as I said earlier, it is not for everyone- the horror is too enigmatic and the humor a bit too strange for the taste of most people I know... as one negative review said: "Make sure you want to buy this sort of book... it is not what I was expecting." (What was she expecting? She never said... the statement would make a lovely caption for a Gory cartoon, though, unrelated to the panels directly preceding and following it: [A woman in a fur coat and a pair of sinister tennis shoes marking a calendar, while a strange and ambiguous animal watches:] "I would fancy a cup of tea, but only on alternating Tuesdays."/ [The ambiguous animal stands in a bookstore, frowning doubtfully as a distraught young woman points fearfully at a nondescript and dusty book on the bottom shelf of an antique bookcase, telling the woman in tennis shoes:] "Make sure you want to buy this sort of book... it is not what I was expecting."/ [The distraught-looking woman asks the woman in sneakers while looking out the shop window:] "Is it my imagination, or has that building moved since last I saw it?" [The doubtful animal replies:] "NO.")

And I think I should also mention that Gory's little cartoons are probably not a good idea for children. Although, I believe that at 9, 10, or 11 I would have been fascinated by the intricately detailed and strange little creepy drawings and their bizarre captions and though any vaguely "adult" elements would have gone way over my head, the cartoons would nonetheless have sparked my imagination... seeing them again as an adult would have been that much more chilling.

And, in closing, yes, this book is tiny, and very short. I'd suggest first of all trying out "Amphigory"- a collection of Gory's weird cartoons which includes "The Curious Sofa: A Pornographic Work by Ogdred Weary", and if you especially like that story to get the little book, or to buy it as a gift for friends with a twisted sense of humor. In fact I would recommend that anyone suspecting they might have a taste for surrealism, dream-like and brutal satire of stiff and stuffy Edwardian and Victorian mannerisms art and customs, subtle gothic horror and twisted humor get hold of as many of the Amphigory books as they can.

3-0 out of 5 stars Anyone up for a game of Thumbfumble?
Hardly pornographic at all, this small and simple book is filled with insinuations of events that could quite possibly be indecent or tawdry, but remain veiled, allowing the reader to reach their own conclusions.

While The Curious Sofa is amusing in its naive and capricious way, it is not a "bust out laughing" piece of entertainment, and made me smile but not laugh. I'm not entirely sure that is worth the $9.00 price. It would be more recommendable if it was half the price and marketed more as a novelty or gift item.

When looking at purchasing this item, take note of the small size of the book and the number of pages. The book is little enough to be a stocking stuffer at Christmas time, and the page count says 64, but it is actually only 32, because the printing is one-sided, so there is only one picture per page turn, opposite pages are all blank.

The drawings, while indeed whimsical, were not particularly special, and the only one who could possibly label anything in this book "pornographic" would be Mother Goose. We never do get to see this Curious Sofa either, and I found that to be the difference between feeling titillated with the unseen, and feeling cheated out of something that could have been special.

Overall, it would be a nice gift item if the price were lower, but at $9.00 for 32 pages with no real conclusion to the tale, leave it on the shelf.

3-0 out of 5 stars Um. Well, it's different.
That's about all I can say. I was expecting a bit more than this. it's very small and very thin and implies more than it says. It's sort of mocking. The sofa isn't curious in the sense that it want s to know things, it's curious in the sense that there's something different about it.

Definitely rated whatever you would rate your own mind, since most of the dirty stuff IS all in the implications and has little to do with the words or images. Little kids would read it and just not get it, but adults might see it a bit different.

Not for kids. ... Read more


88. Sophie Calle: Did You See Me?
by Christine Macel, Ive-Alan Bois, Yve-Alain Bois, Olivier Rolin
list price: $79.00
our price: $49.77
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 3791330357
Catlog: Book (2004-02-01)
Publisher: Prestel Publishing
Sales Rank: 87920
Average Customer Review: 5 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (1)

5-0 out of 5 stars everything I'd hoped for
This book is much more satisifying than the usual exhibition catalog. It's dense and highly informational, but it's also very tactile and engaging in its presentation. Different paper stocks, postcard-size inserts and lovely puffy cover make it more of an artist's book. I'm so happy with it. ... Read more


89. The Daily Practice of Painting: Writings 1962-1993
by Gerhard Richter
list price: $25.00
our price: $25.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 026268084X
Catlog: Book (1995-12-05)
Publisher: The MIT Press
Sales Rank: 63991
Average Customer Review: 4.67 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

"Now that we do not have priests and philosophers anymore, artists are the most important people in the world. . . . Art is wretched, cynical, stupid, helpless, confusing." -- Gerhard Richter

Gerhard Richter, born in Dresden in 1932, is one of the foremost painters of his generation. A great deal has been written about the bewildering heterogeneity of his work over the past 30 years. His seemingly willful and defiant movement between abstract and figurative modes of representation and his seemingly inconsistent methods of applying paint to canvas are consistent, if nothing else, with Richter himself -- the master of the paradoxical statement. Although he has emphasized that he is first a painter and has never been a theorist, he has, throughout his career issued provocative, contentious, and memorable statements. Over seven years in preparation, this book makes available a selection of Richter's texts from all periods of his career, many translated for the first time. There are public statements about specific exhibitions, private reflections drawn from personal correspondence, answers to questions posed by critics, and excerpts from journals discussing the intentions, subjects, methods, and sources of his works from various periods. The writings are accompanied by 87 biographical illustrations of paintings from the artist's personal collection. Published in association with the Anthony d'Offay Gallery, London ... Read more

Reviews (3)

4-0 out of 5 stars A genius.
I really enjoyed this book. I bought it at the Ricther exhibit I just saw at the SFMOMA a few weeks ago. I wasn't familiar with his work until then. I was awed at the different themes and usage of what would seem to be everyday normal moments caught with an unearthly feel. He's even using music and video installations now. This book does uses his collected notes, interviews and letters as an insight into the thinking behind the artist. Richter's philosophy of not subscribing to any ideaology is very evident here. He seems especially disdainfull of Communism as it does not afford the freedom for individual creation. He's been grasping to make sense of his art all his life and its what has been driving him. You can see it in his paintings. The work itself becomes a question. Why this subject. What is relevant? What is the importance. Why this style of painting? What is the meaning of the photograph it's based on? The book is chock full of interesting ideas on art, art history and the current state of society and the culture. Even if you don't agree with it all - it's still a very interesting read. I do recommend that you first familiarize yourself with Richter's various works first. You'll enjoy the book all the more.

5-0 out of 5 stars Class Act
Ironically, this book - that decries idealogies - could be a Bible, speaking almost always on deeply conceptual issues not only of artmaking but of living. Fortunately, for those with a pulse, there is sufficient comic relief in the form of absurdities, parodies and self-aggrandizement.

It is tempting to skip the early writing and go straight to the wisdom through maturity (the notes are chronologically arranged.) That would be unfortunate for there are tremendous nuggets scattered among the contradictions in the earlier pages.

If you're familiar with his work, much will be self-evident; but I found surprisingly astute reflections from the "young" Richter (ie:'66): "I like continual uncertainty". On the issue of changing style/form every 3-4 years, Richter claims that "historically speaking, changeable artists are a growing phenomenon". Even back in '77, he says "Painting has a brilliant future. Hasn't it?" Strong words, and brave for the time. If only the irascible Kuspit had read this before he slammed Richter (as "profoundly nihilistic") and believed such statements as "I want pictorial content without sentiment, but I want it as human as possible" or "the pleasure of painting proves the necessity of it".

I hope future editions of this include the charming interview with Robert Storr in Art In America Jan. 2002 - which clued me into the fact that Richter had a set of writings out. There are a few photos that show the various painting forms he's explored so if you don't know his work, you can get some idea what all the discussion's about.

5-0 out of 5 stars Compelling
A wildly compelling book that should appeal to artists, philosophers and other thoughtful people. It contains journal entries, interviews, and musings of Richer's everyday struggles to discover what it means to be an artist. I tried to start at the beginning, but found it much more interesting to open the book to a random passage and each time discovered thought-provoking ideas. At first glance, his ideas and declarations often seem quite ludicrous, but if you take one moment to consider his thoughts, his genius is revealed. His prose (sometimes scathing) is extremeley amusing when read aloud as it was by a group of artists working on a large project. We took turns reading a passage and then found ourselves discussing (and quoting) it for days. His writings include the impact of his early life on his artwork, critiques of other artist's work (Anslem Keiffer does not fare well here!), keen observations and interpretations from studying art and the human condition in modern society as well as ideas, form, materials, and content in art. I found that it opened up a new way of thinking about my own work and why I am driven to create. I highly recommend it. ... Read more


90. Faeries: 25th Anniversary Edition
list price: $24.95
our price: $15.72
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810932741
Catlog: Book (2002-10-29)
Publisher: Harry N Abrams
Sales Rank: 3344
Average Customer Review: 4.88 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

It has been 25 years since Brian Froud and Alan Lee created the delightful, imaginative, and surprising Faeries-a book that quickly became a massive international bestseller and went on to sell more than a million copies. Readers continue to offer praise:"This is the most influential book I have ever read." "This book is-where are the words to describe it? Magnificent / Fabulous / Beautiful / Moving / Terrifying / Fantastic. . . ."

In celebration of Faeries' 25th anniversary, Abrams is delighted to publish a special edition featuring eight new pages and 20 new pieces of art by Froud and Lee. The artists have also contributed new introductions. Since Faeries first appeared, both men have become tremendously successful and respected figures in the worlds of film, art, and publishing. But Faeries remains perhaps their most enduring work, a superb exploration of the myths, legends, folklore, and fantasy of the world of the faeries. ... Read more

Reviews (50)

5-0 out of 5 stars "Faeries" one of the most influential books of my childhood
My mother gave my a copy of "Faeries" for Christmas 1980, when I was 11. I was instantly enchanted with the idea of faeries as real beings, and accepted much of the text as truth. I fantasized about spotting faeries in the woods and rocks surrounding my childhood home, and made many (sophomoric) attempts to copy Brian Froud's illustrations. As an adult I even had a flower faerie tattooed on my ankle in homage to his art

My origional copy of "Faeries" is tattered and dog-eared, most of the pages have fallen out, and are hopelessly out-of-sequence, but I can't bear to throw it away. I count "Faeries" as one of the most influential books I had as kid growing up, and I wholeheartedly recommend it to any child (or adult) interested in faeries or mythology. The book is incredibly well-researched, and beautifully illustrated. The hand-written text can be difficult to read at times, but adds to the wonderful illusion of illicitly reading someone's journal

Bravo for reissuing this book, I am ordering my new hardcover copy today

5-0 out of 5 stars I can't find the words to describe it...
If you thought you liked Lady C's Pressed Fairy Book (now out of print), then you'll LOVE this one!! It is the best faerie book i have ever seen, and read. It not only tells you the history of faeries, but it also gives you an idea where Faerie -the land of faeries- is, it gives you detailed information about all the wee folk! If you thought faeries were the pretty winged Tinkerbell likes, think again, and read this book! You'll get surprised on how many faerie types there is!!

The book is beautifully illustrated, and a must for every one interested in faeries, and art! This one should be in the bookshelf in every home! Buy it for yourself, for your mom, your kid and for your best friend!! It makes a great present!

Definately worth the money, i'd pay the double price if i had to, it's that great!

5-0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and Inspiring
Faeries, like the creatures it tries to describe, is hard to classify. Pick it up - it's a large, solid, beautifully bound coffeetable book for coffeetables you've no intention on putting drinks on - and flip through it once and you'll see fantasy art that beautifully captures the otherworldly-yet-very-familiar nature of its subject matter. Perhaps some of it will look familiar, as the art from Faeries has been used in many places and set the trends that other fantasy artists now follow.

Pick it up later and you'll notice text. Words. Stories, in unobtrusive print that is big enough to be nicely readable but cunningly placed to make sure the art has gotten your full attention before you do any reading. The words retell key sections of faerie lore and elucidate faerie etiquette and the polymorphic nature of these beings.

The subject matter is not sugar-coated or Bowlderized as if for children, but treated with the reverence and respect due to stories that have survived numerous invasions, migrations, and changes in the dominant religion. These are hardy stories, hearty stories that have lived for longer than any of us and that will outlive us all. These are stories and works of art that can be nourishing, that can enrich and enliven like a thick hearty soup on a cold day and refresh like a crisp cool drink on a hot one.

After going through this mighty book a time or two, your attention might be drawn to the names on the cover. Brian Froud is one of them, and he went on after this book to help make movies ("The Dark Crystal" and "Labyrinth") and make more books (some with the help of Terry Jones, like "Lady Cottington's Pressed Fairy Book" and "The Goblin Companion: A Field Guide to Goblins"). Alan Lee is the other, and he went on to do cover illustrations for "The Lord of the Rings" that wound up becoming the definitive art for the movies. You might smile when you see them, and know hat anyone who saw this book before seeing any of those other things was in on the great secret about what those two can do, and if you get the book, you'll be in on it too.

4-0 out of 5 stars The best Faery book I've ever read!
"Faeries: 25th Anniversery edition" is a master peice! Brian Foud truley outdid himself this time! For all the Brian Froud fans and fairy lovers out there, this book is highly recommended. In this 25th anneversery addition Of "Faries", Brian Froud adds new artwork. The book is about different kinds of faeries and a lot of other mythological creatures! The book contains a lot of brilliant stories of and beautiful, detailed artwork. The only problem I saw in this book was the way some of the stories were written. They were written in a way that I could hardly read. Other than that, this book is fabulous!

5-0 out of 5 stars great pictures and stories
Absolutely wonderful writing and incredible pictures. I like the format of this book in that its a mix of hand written pencil notes along with regular type font for the main text. The drwaings are fantastic - wonderful expressions, outfits, colors. There are legends and such to set the stage before talking about each of the different faeries and other characters. Each faery discussed has a page devoted with a short text and drawings. The writing enlightens the imagination. ... Read more


91. Colorado, 1870-2000
by William Henry Jackson, John Fielder, Ed Marston
list price: $95.00
our price: $59.85
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1565793471
Catlog: Book (1999-08-01)
Publisher: Westcliffe Publishers
Sales Rank: 12088
Average Customer Review: 4.57 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The images of early west photographer William Henry Jackson capture a Colorado landscape both pristine and already dramatically affected by the onslaught on western civilization. Standing exactly where Jackson stood, and pointing his own camera in precisely the same direction, John Fielder has rephotographed Jackson's Colorado images to capture the often startling change that has occurred over the last century. The result is both breathtaking and stark, hopeful and disquieting. Jackson's and Fielder's photography is accompanied by thoughtful and provocative essays by respected experts in the environmental field: Roderick Nash, America's foremost wilderness historian and author of Wilderness and the American Mind; Ed Marston, journalist and publisher of High Country News; and Eric Paddock, Curator of Photography at the Colorado Historical Society. John Fielder describes the profound experience of traveling the state and seeing the landscape from Jackson's perspective, and reflects upon changes of the last 130 years.

The contrast between Jackson's and Fielder's photographs not only illuminates Colorado's past but will help us determine the course of land management as we move into the next century. Accompanied by an educational program that includes lectures, a traveling exhibit, newspaper serialization, and television series, this book is aimed at encouraging people to appreciate and reflect on nature, history, and photography as we move into the next century. Colorado: 1870-2000 stands not only as an important document of westward exploration, expansion, and urbanization, but helps define our past and future environmental values. ... Read more

Reviews (23)

4-0 out of 5 stars A Tale of Two Books
John Fielder is one of America's greatest living photographers, and he brings his love of the Colorado wilderness to this book. His re-shoots of Jacksons 19th century photographs are both beautiful and thought-provoking.... the photographs make it worthwhile.

On the other hand, the text is a different story. Reading a text-only version of this book, one might conclude that the title is a misprint, and that the book should really be called "Colorado 1970 - 2000." Fielder roamed across Colorado capturing the changes in places like Kremmling, Denver, and Ouray, but the text never tells us anything about these places, or why they changed, or why we should care. Instead we get chapters about oil shale and the Forest Service.

Ahem. If I wanted to read about the relationship between Forest Service bureaucrats and small Western towns, I would have bought a book called "The Relationship Between the Forest Service and Small Western Towns." My book is called "Colorado 1870 - 2000." That is what I want to read about.

It's true that oil shale schemes, government agencies, and others have played a role in shaping Colorado in the past 30 years. But before that there were events like the Silver Crash of 1893, the City Beautiful movement, the Depression, World War II, and Urban Renewal. You won't read about those in this book.

The pictures are beautiful, and the text is well-written (if misplaced and unwanted). Just don't expect to learn much about the places you are looking at- except that they are very pretty.

5-0 out of 5 stars This is a wonderful book
John Fielder has recreated photographs of Colorado that were taken 100 years ago by William Henry Jackson. It's fun to see the changes that have taken place over time. Some change is good, some bad. Fielder even went to the trouble of making sure that the same or similar items, such as trains, automobiles, even people, were in the images that he captured. It's an expensive book, but it's worth the money in my opinion.

2-0 out of 5 stars Binding Fell Apart
I noticed the review that said this book was worthy of "permanent display on your coffee table." Well, I don't think that will be possible with my book, as the binding fell apart after 6 months. The book has gotten a fair amount of use, but nothing out of the ordinary. I've since seen a similar problem with a couple of the display copies at bookstores (which is why they've been demoted to display copies). So I don't think this is an isolated problem. It seems like the book is so big that they didn't make a strong enough binding for it. So just a warning for this thinking of buying this book. The good news is that, on the advice of one of the reviews, I bought Colorado: Yesterday & Today to replace my copy of Colorado: 1870-2000. I agree that it is the better book and now it will be on permanent display on my coffe-table.

5-0 out of 5 stars Worthy of permanent display on a coffee table
This book is excellent in look, feel, and quality. It is intriguing to see how much landscape has changed in 130 years. Many times for the better and many times for the worse. In every case it is very interesting to see two pictures side by side and compare 1870 with 2000. The photographer was very meticulous to capture every shot as closely as possible to the original perspective and frame, which really enhances the "then and now" feel of the book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Clearing Up the Confusion and Getting the Photo Details
There appears to be some confusion as all of the reviews of the original "Colorado 1870-2000" big book are credited to this, the paperback "Colorado 1870-2000 Revisited: The History Behind the Images". This book is a companion book to the original. It takes each photo set from the big book and goes into detail about the location, changes, and how Fielder acquired each photo. These are the things that, being left out of the original, made several people give the big book negative reviews. While it would have been nice (and certainly less expensive) to have everything in one volume, we now have the information for which those disappointed with the big book were looking. While the big book is a piece of coffee table art, the Revisited book fits neatly on your bookshelf, ready to be taken down to answer those questions posed by your friends perusing the big book. I take a bit of offense at having to have paid for two different books, but they belong together and I feel were money well spent; the big book for the beautiful photos and the revisited book for its entertaining and educational material. ... Read more


92. Pictures: Robert Mapplethorpe
by Robert Mapplethorpe, Ingrid Sischy
list price: $75.00
our price: $75.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1892041162
Catlog: Book (1999-09-01)
Publisher: Arena Editions
Sales Rank: 348117
Average Customer Review: 3.43 out of 5 stars
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Reviews (7)

3-0 out of 5 stars A thought-provoking collection of Mapplethorpe's sex picture
This collection of pictures is bound in a good quality cover and printed on a glossy paper of reasonable quality.

The images themselves are, in the main, sex pictures; S&M pictures; and a few portraits. The sex pictures are quite grotesque, concentrating as they do on the pain, blood, urine, bondage and so on. Whether you'll enjoy these depends on your view of the subject. Personally, I didn't find them uplifting or illuminating. The models were sullen, looked unhappy, or downright sad: but then I suppose if your... has been nailed to a plank you're entitled to be a little shaken!

The few portraits included in this volume were entirely unpleasing, and not representative of Mapplethorpe's better work. They offered no real insight ot the subjects, who remained cold and aloof, detached it seems from the process of making art.

This is a collection of many of Mapplethorpe's more 'sensational' and 'shocking' images. Whether you are affronted or not they do deserve inspection, if only to see what the 'conservatives' tried to ban. You might actually feel repulsed and agree that these pictures are not art but pornography.

2-0 out of 5 stars One word: Ouch
You can always debate whether this book is "art" or not, but the fact is I am worried about what happened to some of the subjects. Helmut? Are you okay? I think Mapplethorpe wanted to shock, and he did, but I found the pictures had too much pain in them to be appreciated. I was deadened to what Mapplethorpe wanted to say, if he wanted to say anything at all. Ouch, ouch, ouch.

3-0 out of 5 stars very good book
artistic and powerful, i recommend it

5-0 out of 5 stars Art Or Trash? The Book Which Will Decide Your Vote!
Probably the most reviled book at Amazon because of its sexual explictness of the "out there" gay life led before AIDS, complete with bondage, S&M and even torture. Yet Mapplethorpe was artist enough to make many of the images compelling and haunting plus horrific yet eye/heart stopping. There are even self portraits of Mapplethorpe at the height of his own physical beauty before he too would be ravaged and killed by AIDS. I come down solidly on the side of the "This is art" contenders but caution you that this book is not for the rigid, the squeamish or minors. Mapplethorpe captured an extreme moment in time, when controversial sexual behavior came out to the public and shoved itself in the public's face, clamoring to be viewed and defying us to look away. I, for one, could not look away.

5-0 out of 5 stars Another Posthumous success, whether you like it or not!
This is a fabulous collection of the very subject matter that turned the art world on end. These pictures, however explicit and extreme in subject matter push the more important issue of artistic freedom. Without this freedom we all suffer. Censorship has somehow told us that we can be harmed by the images we look at...more harmful is the forced conformity that ensues when creativity is left for others to decide what is or isn't done in the name of artistic freedom. Having left his flowers and portraits in their own respective niches, his artistic freedom rings clear as a bell with this collection. ... Read more


93. George Inness and the Science of Landscape
by Rachael Ziady DeLue
list price: $55.00
our price: $55.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0226142299
Catlog: Book (2004-12-29)
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Sales Rank: 456007
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Book Description

George Inness (1825-94), long considered one of America's greatest landscape painters, has yet to receive his full due from scholars and critics. A complicated artist and thinker, Inness painted stunningly beautiful, evocative views of the American countryside. Less interested in representing the details of a particular place than in rendering the "subjective mystery of nature," Inness believed that capturing the spirit or essence of a natural scene could point to a reality beyond the physical or, as Inness put it, "the reality of the unseen."

Throughout his career, Inness struggled to make visible what was invisible to the human eye by combining a deep interest in nineteenth-century scientific inquiry--including optics, psychology, physiology, and mathematics--with an idiosyncratic brand of mysticism. Rachael Ziady DeLue's George Inness and the Science of Landscape--the first in-depth examination of Inness's career to appear in several decades--demonstrates how the artistic, spiritual, and scientific aspects of Inness's art found expression in his masterful landscapes. In fact, Inness's practice was not merely shaped by his preoccupation with the nature and limits of human perception; he conceived of his labor as a science in its own right.

This lavishly illustrated work reveals Inness as profoundly invested in the science and philosophy of his time and illuminates the complex manner in which the fields of art and science intersected in nineteenth-century America. Long-awaited, this reevaluation of one of the major figures of nineteenth-century American art will prove to be a seminal text in the fields of art history and American studies.

... Read more

94. Americas Wilderness: The Photographs of Ansel Adams
by Ansel Adams, John Muir, Elaine M. Bucher, Ansel American Wilderness Adams
list price: $17.98
our price: $17.98
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0762413905
Catlog: Book (2002-06-01)
Publisher: Courage Books
Sales Rank: 7860
Average Customer Review: 3.45 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

The Photographs of Ansel Adams with the Writings of John Muir

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Ansel Adams whose landmark early photographs of wild America, originally taken for the Works Progress Administration, fill the pages of this splendid volume.Adams' breathtaking images are accompanied by excerpts from the writings of Sierra Club founder John Muir, the renowned conservationist who devoted his life to celebrating and preserving the American wilderness. ... Read more

Reviews (11)

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Book
If you're a fan of Ansel Adams, you will absolutely love this book. It's 127 pages of breathtaking photography with poetic writings by John Muir. The images fill the entire page while subtle text accompanies the photographs. "I only went out for a walk, and finally concluded to stay out until sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in." These passages work hand in hand with the photographs giving a meditative quality about them. For a split moment you actually feel like you are physically standing in that surrounding and experiencing the beauty of nature. Adams and Muir work as a unit to document this beautiful phenomenon we call nature and present it to us in this book called America's Wilderness.
This book allows you to appreciate the beauty of America from the vast mountaintops to the endless plains to the ever-changing cloud formation. He captures the essence of Mother Nature and all her minute details. This book would be far from complete if it were not for the eloquent writings of John Muir. Though Muir has long passed away, his writing, fortunately, will never depart.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great book!
If you're a fan of Ansel Adams, you will absolutely love this book. It's 127 pages of breathtaking photography with poetic writings by John Muir. The images fill the entire page while subtle text accompanies the photographs. "I only went out for a walk, and finally concluded to stay out until sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in." These passages work hand in hand with the photographs giving a meditative quality about them. For a split moment you actually feel like you are physically standing in that surrounding and experiencing the beauty of nature. Adams and Muir work as a unit to document this beautiful phenomenon we call nature and present it to us in this book called America's Wilderness.
This book allows you to appreciate the beauty of America from the vast mountaintops to the endless plains to the ever-changing cloud formation. He captures the essence of Mother Nature and all her minute details. This book would be far from complete if it were not for the eloquent writings of John Muir. Though Muir has long passed away, his writing, fortunately, will never depart.

4-0 out of 5 stars Great Images
If you're a fan of Ansel Adams, you will absolutely love this book. It's 127 pages of breathtaking photography with poetic writings by John Muir. The images fill the entire page while subtle text accompanies the photographs. "I only went out for a walk, and finally concluded to stay out until sundown, for going out, I found, was really going in." These passages work hand in hand with the photographs giving a meditative quality about them. For a split moment you actually feel like you are physically standing in that surrounding and experiencing the beauty of nature. Adams and Muir work as a unit to document this beautiful phenomenon we call nature and present it to us in this book called America's Wilderness.
This book allows you to appreciate the beauty of America from the vast mountaintops to the endless plains to the ever-changing cloud formation. He captures the essence of Mother Nature and all her minute details. This book would be far from complete if it were not for the eloquent writings of John Muir. Though Muir has long passed away, his writing, fortunately, will never depart.

1-0 out of 5 stars Awful quality
This book is not worth the paper, believe me! I don't know if it's because 'printed in China', but the photos are not comparable with other Ansel Adams books or calendars. Please don't mix it up with the hardcover version which is >100$.

1-0 out of 5 stars Awful printing quality bad shadow detail, poor sharpness
Terrible printing quality of photos that are obscure because they're not that good. Whether the lack of sharpness in these is down to the paper, the printer, or the photographer (yes, even Ansel took crap at times, and people seem determined to publish everything he ever did, however bad!), I don't know, but the lack of sharpness and the awful shadow detail make this book an absolute waste of time. Maybe it will impress a non-photographer (simply so they can boast having a book of Adams's shots) - but a photographer is wasting their money. ... Read more


95. Jean-Antoine Houdon : Sculptor of the Enlightenment
by Anne L. Poulet
list price: $50.00
our price: $31.50
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Asin: 0226676498
Catlog: Book (2005-01-15)
Publisher: University Of Chicago Press
Sales Rank: 356765
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Book Description

Jean-Antoine Houdon (1741-1826) has long been recognized as the greatest European portrait sculptor of the late eighteenth century, flourishing during both the American and French Revolutions as well as during the Directoire and Empire in France. Whether sculpting a head of state, an intellectual, or a young child, Houdon had an uncanny ability to capture the essence of his subject with a characteristic pose or expression. Yet until now, Houdon's exquisite sculptures have never been the subject of a major exhibition.

This lavish exhibition catalogue, now available in paperback, is the definitive work on Houdon. With more than one hundred color plates and two hundred black and white halftones, Jean-Antoine Houdon: Sculptor of the Enlightenment illustrates every stage of the sculptor's fascinating career, from his early portrayals of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette to his stunning portraits of American patriots such as George Washington, the Marquis de Lafayette, John Paul Jones, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson. Indeed the images we hold dear of legendary Enlightenment figures like Diderot, Rousseau, d'Alembert, and Voltaire are based on works by Houdon. More than mere representations, these sculptures provide us fascinating, intimate glimpses into the very core of who these figures were. Houdon's genius animated even his less illustrious subjects, like his portraits of his family and friends, and filled his sculptures of children with delicacy and freshness. Accompanying the images of Houdon's masterworks are four insightful essays that discuss Houdon's views on art (based in part on a newly discovered manuscript written by the artist) as well as his prominence in the highly varied cultures of eighteenth-century France, Germany, and Russia.

From aristocrats to revolutionaries, actors to philosophers, Houdon's amazingly vivid portraits constitute the visual record of the Enlightenment and capture the true spirit of a remarkable age. Jean-Antoine Houdon finally gives these gorgeous works their due.

... Read more

96. Francisco Toledo: Whitechapel Art Gallery, Londres: Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia
by Francisco Toledo
list price: $77.40
our price: $77.40
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Asin: 8475064914
Catlog: Book (2001-05)
Publisher: Grupo Oceano
Sales Rank: 1776612
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97. Dream Race: The Search for the Greatest Thoroughbred Race Horse of All-Time
by Robert Clark
list price: $39.95
our price: $39.95
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Asin: 0975948806
Catlog: Book (2004-09)
Publisher: Horse and Dragon Publishing
Sales Rank: 297025
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Book Description

Dream Race: the Search for the Greatest Race Horse of All-Time is a historical novel built from in-depth research of racing history.What separates Dream Race from other pieces of literature is the 12 full color illustrations painted by the author, Robert Clark, and shows a dozen imaginary races and offers facts on nearly a hundred of the top race horses nationally and internationally. ... Read more


98. Thomas Ruff Nudes
list price: $49.95
our price: $32.97
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0810945819
Catlog: Book (2003-04-01)
Publisher: Harry N Abrams
Sales Rank: 69717
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Amazon.com

Girls, girls, girls. And well-endowed boys. They're the subjects of Thomas Ruff Nudes, a book of photographs by a well-known German artist best known for his searching images of faces, night skies and architecture. The new photographs were pulled off Internet porn sites and enlarged, colored and blurred by the artist. The fascinating thing about these nudes is the way the indistinct tumble of imagery replicates the physical sensation of sex. Everything is hazy, incomplete, replete with longing--a giddy carnival of orifices and sex organs. Skin is suffused with the blush of sexual arousal. Women offer themselves to unseen men and to one another. Some might say that Ruff is "making a statement" about the easy availability of pornography. Nonsense. He is documenting, in his painterly way, the elemental human urges that attract us to each other’s flesh. The most interesting images in the book are the most abstract, revealing sexual appetite as the eternal pursuit of another body’s knobs and holes. Accompanying the photographs is an earthy, supposedly fictional, fragment by the controversial French novelist Michel Houellebecq. The narrator reminisces about the years when he and his wife visited sex clubs on the Riviera. He writes of "dark rooms where people make love without choosing partners, submerged in the flux of tactile sensation." This is the world of Ruff's most successful photographs, a place where the staginess of pornography is transformed into the realm of pure desire. --Cathy Curtis ... Read more


99. The Secret Life of Salvador Dali
by Salvador Dali, Haakon M. Chevalier
list price: $14.95
our price: $10.17
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0486274543
Catlog: Book (1993-03-01)
Publisher: Dover Publications
Sales Rank: 16892
Average Customer Review: 4.17 out of 5 stars
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Book Description

This early autobiography, which takes Dalí through his late thirties, is as startling and unpredictable as his art. On its first publication, the reviewer of Books observed: "It is impossible not to admire this painter as writer ... (Dalí) succeeds in doing exactly what he sets out to do ... communicates the snobbishness, self-adoration, comedy, seriousness, fanaticism, in short the concept of life and the total picture of himself he sets out to portray." Superbly illustrated with over eighty photographs of Dalí and his works, and scores of Dalí drawings and sketches.
... Read more

Reviews (6)

1-0 out of 5 stars A mess
This is not Dali revealing honestly about himself, his work, his life: This is 400 pages of Dali promoting Dali, being Daliesc: which means shocking people. This book covers a time period from his birth to the outbreak of World War II, at which time he was mostly known for being a shocking surrealist, not necessarily as a great painter yet. The book is used more to promote himself to the public at that time in his style of the time (shocking, unexpected, deviant) rather than reveal the secrets of his work and style. Heavy heavy influence of Freud and psychoanalysis; the text becomes so introverted and self-analytical that it is almost unreadable much of the time. There is a 4 page discussion of a piece of mucus on a bathroom wall; one page about the painting The Persistence of Memory. Somewhere along the first or second chapter you learn something about how his style developed, in the rest of the book you learn that he has a huge ego and a nasty cruel streak, to the point where you really start to dislike him as a human. I have been to the Dali museum in Tampa, seen his works in other museums: He is a genius of a painter. This book is a waste of time unless you are truly truly die-hard. The reviewer who thought it was a comedy and laughed at every page has serious issues.

5-0 out of 5 stars Funniest Book Ever
This book, without a doubt, is the most hysterically funny thing I have ever read. Dali is some kind of weird comic genius, and I am not exaggerating when I say that I laughed out loud on every page. Whatever you think of Dali's art--and I've never thought much of it myself--this book is a guaranteed laugh riot.

5-0 out of 5 stars Dali Grasps More Than His Own "Secret Life"
Salvador Dali is a genius, and even though I really do think that it is redundant to say genius and Salvador Dali in the same sentence, it serves it's purpose. This book, so intimitely perverse yet, cunningly understandable sets an example for man kind at it's best. Who has ever dreamed of conducting their own experiments based off of their wildest dreams? Or plunged off of a stair case to give the example of anti-limitation? How about searching their entire life for their one true love, ignoring all possibilities of just a fling or a relationship without meaning. Everything has meaning to Dali, and he brings that meaning to real life. I know that I have always wanted to explore my wildest dreams in actuality, and this book gives me the power to overcome what other people think. Salvador realises that what others think is important, but he knows that their thoughts and actions, when based upon his own unpredictablity makes a hell of a show for the audience within. Through this book you will learn to think outside the box and everything for one instant will make sense in your mind. Or you could read it without knowing what you are getting into exactly and become the most disgusted person on Earth. That doesn't matter though... all that you have to do is comprehend, and he will help you with that.

4-0 out of 5 stars Revealing Self Portrait of a Great Artist
This book reveals that in addition to being one of the century's greatest visual artists, he was also a tallented and entertaining writer. Dali's personality is all here-- the brilliance, the cruelty, the humor, and the megalomania.

If you compare this with other sources you'll find that the chronology for his youth is off, and (not surprisingly) some incidents are creatively embellished. Still, anyone interested in the artist should read this book first-- it's a great self portrait by a brilliant eccentric artist.

5-0 out of 5 stars Dali: Genius and Spoiled Brat
Those fascinated by Dali's artwork will want to read this autobiography. Dali provides 400 pages of commentary describing/explaining the symbols of his artwork.. Mostly psychoanalytic approaches. There are a number of descriptions of events that shaped his thoughts from childhood. A great read for anyone seeking companionship in a world that resists weirdness. ... Read more


100. De Kooning : An American Master
by MARK STEVENS, ANNALYN SWAN
list price: $35.00
our price: $21.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1400041759
Catlog: Book (2004-11-09)
Publisher: Knopf
Sales Rank: 541
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