Cover image for A history of pictures : from the cave to the computer screen
A history of pictures : from the cave to the computer screen
Hockney, David, author.
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Publication Information:
New York : Abrams, 2016.
Physical Description:
360 pages : color illustrations ; 29 cm
The making of pictures has a history going back perhaps 100,000 years to an African shell used as a paint palette. Two-thirds of it is irrevocably lost, since the earliest images known to us are from about 40,000 years ago. But what a 40,000 years, explored here by David Hockney and Martin Gayford in a brilliantly original book. They privilege no medium, or period, or style, but instead, in 16 chapters, discuss how and why pictures have been made, and insistently link 'art' to human skills and human needs. Each chapter addresses an important question: What happens when we try to express reality in two dimensions? Why is the 'Mona Lisa' beautiful and why are shadows so rarely found in Chinese, Japanese and Persian painting? Why are optical projections always going to be more beautiful than HD television can ever be? How have the makers of images depicted movement? What makes marks on a flat surface interesting? Energized by two lifetimes of looking at pictures, combined with a great artist's 70-year experience of experimentation as he makes them, this profoundly moving and enlightening volume will be the art book of the decade.
Introduction: Pictures, art and history -- Pictures and reality -- Making marks -- Shadows and deception -- Picturing time and space -- Brunelleschi's mirror and Alberti's window -- Mirrors and reflections -- Renaissance: naturalism and idealism -- Paper, paint and multiplying pictures -- Painting the stage and staging pictures -- Caravaggio and the academy of the lynx-eyed -- Vermeer and Rembrandt: the hand, the lens and the heart -- Truth and beauty in the Age of Reason -- The camera before and after 1839 -- Photography, truth and painting -- Painting with and without photography -- Snapshots and moving pictures -- Movies and stills -- The unending history of pictures.
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