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Dinosaur Imagery: The Science of Lost Worlds and Jurassic Art - the Lanzendorf Collection Hardcover – 24 May 2000

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In 1985, a Chicago hair stylist named John Lanzendorf bought a sculpture of a Tyrannosaurus rex on a whim. Fifteen years later, he had added more than 420 pieces to that initial purchase, assembling a collection that, paleontologist Philip Currie writes, "is the envy of many museums", and that one day doubtless will form the core of a museum collection itself.

Cataloguing only a portion of Lanzendorf's holdings, Dinosaur Imagery joins works by painters, animators, and sculptors such as John Gurche, Donna Braginetz, and Gary Staab with extended captions by paleontologists such as Michael Brett-Surman (Smithsonian Institution) and Mark Norell (American Museum of Natural History). The works of art range from the rigorously representational to the occasionally playful (but, fortunately, seldom kitschy), and there are some wonderful finds among them. The texts are revealing; it will come as news to many readers that the ancestor of the aforementioned T. rex may well have sported feathers (its posture, recent anatomical studies suggest, also resembled that of a chicken), that theropods hunted in packs, that sauropods travelled in herds, and that "the extinction of dinosaurs, although scientific dogma for decades, is now recognised as taxonomic illusion".

This well-made book is manna for fans of dinosaurs, and an ideal gift for budding paleontologists. --Gregory McNamee


"...I found my attention riveted by the paintings and sculptures from the collection of John J. Lanzendorf reproduced in Dinosaur Imagery: The Science of Lost Worlds and Jurassic Art. ...The art tempts one to generalize, stimulates reflection and focuses the reader on what, really, was a dinosaur." -Dale A. Russell, North Carolina State University, in AMERICAN SCIENTIST (July/August 2001) "The quality of the artwork and the manner in which it succeeds in bringing dinosaurs back to life is the trademark of this book. ...I highly recommend this book for many reasons, not only its visual spendour and easy reading style, but the fact that it merges the worlds of science and art nearly indistinguishably." -John Long in DINONEWS (April 2001) "Dinosaur lovers of all ages will enjoy Dinosaur Imagery...more than a mere coffee-table book. Recommended for college and university libraries, as well as public library collections and the general reader." -CHOICE (March 2001) "The current trend in dinosaur art toward realism and scientific accuracy is admirably and beautifully captured in Dinosaur Imagery... The volume features work of many of the best dinosaur artists and is testimony to their diversity, talent, and care. The numerous sculptures are an unexpected delight." -SCIENCE (October 2000) "John Lanzendorf is synonymous with dinosaur art because he has made lasting contributions to this growing creative field. My first encounter with his incredible collection was memorable. Every nook and cranny, every wall and counter-top was covered in dinosauriana. I was awestruck by the breadth of the collection and the depth of John's commitment, his limitless energy, enthusiasm, and devotion to dino-art. His collection is without equal and certainly the most important in the country, if not the world." -John W. McCarter, Jr., President and CEO of the Field Museum in Chicago

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By virtue of its dramatic sail, Dimetrodon is perhaps the best-known nondinosaurian vertebrate fossil. Read the first page
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 10 reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
The best dinosaur art collection available 16 Aug. 2001
By Johannes - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Well,I did received this book for my birthday,and guess if I was happy!It is probably the best birthday gift I've ever received.
The title sounds exciting and suggestive,and so is the book itself. It features parts of the Lanzendorf Collection,which is the largest dinosaur art collection in the world. This 160-page book features about 20 per cent of the collection,but it is still amazingly much. Of course,it would be impossible to collect all dinosaur art beeing made today,but if anyone did,John Lanzendorf would be the one to do it. His apartment contains only dinosaur collectibles and artwork - no other decorations!That must be a really amazing home to live in!
With this book,I have the option to view some of the work hanging there. Although this book has some pictures of beautifull,triassic dinosaurs and jurassic ones as well,it focuses mainly on the cretaceous period,which is called "A Cretaceous End to A Lost World". And that is may be because most of the really fantastic dinosaurs lived during the mid-late cretaceous. There are a lot of pictures of T-rex,which is particulary my favorite dinosaur,and the most inspiring one in this book. Some of the other amazing dinosaurs featured here are Sinsauropteryx,Carnotaurus,Lambeosaurus,and many more.
It does have some inspiring,peacefull pictures of plant-eaters,although the pictures of theropods are the highlights.
Each artist has their own,unique style. John Sibbick has an immidiate sense of detail,and is one of the best. Luis Rey has a little sense of surrealism in his detailed,a little strange paintings. Mark Hallet has the classical style in dinosaur painting. John Bindon is the master of black/white dinosaur art.
Donna Braginetz always make it feel so real you believe they are really there!
Of course,the bronze sculptures makes a nice addition to the artwork,and they look very real. Must be nice decorations!
Over all,the combination of the artists`s different talents makes this book a wonderfull coffee-table book,and a unique collection of dinosaur art that should be a part of every paleontologist`s or dinosaur maniac`s library. I know it is quite expensive,but believe me,it`s worth every penny you spend on it!It has been very helpfull to me when learning to paint good dinosaurs,and the different talents makes me take little inspiration from every painting in the book.
So,if you like dinosaurs seriously,this is a must-have!No dinosaur artist should be without a copy of this book.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
A beautiful blend of art and science 29 July 2000
By Mary Kirkaldy - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Dinosaur Imagery: The Science of Lost Worlds and Jurassic Art is as unique as the art collection which it mirrors. Academic Press is to be commended for presenting these images from John Lanzendorf's private collection to an extremely receptive public. This book is a testament to the dynamic beauty of paleo art and sculpture which has allied the dinosaurs of the past with admirers in the present.
The high quality photos of the paintings and sculptures are accompanied by substantial commentary on the subject matter either by the artists or by experts on the particular species. Much more than a coffee table book, it can also be used as a reference book, with the works of the finest paleo artists illustrating the science. The groupings and progression make a visual statement as to why John Lanzendorf continues to acquire these images and Academic Press and the Field Museum of Natural History are successfully displaying the collection.
Dinosaur Imagery also includes contact information (e-mail/web page addresses) for many of the artists and scientists who contributed to the variety and theme of the book, thus linking scientific imagination with the interactive cyber world.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The Lanzendorf Collection: Most Impressive! 21 Jun. 2000
By D. Lathrap - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Dinosaur Imagery: The Science of Lost Worlds and Jurassic Art (The Lanzendorf Collection) is as impressive a volume as its title is long. Mr. Lanzendorf has been collecting dinosaur art since 1985 and has now amassed a collection of 420 pieces including paintings, drawings and sculptures. The book presents less than 20% of his assemblage, but the that is enough to make the average dino-buff drool with envy. All the pieces included in the book represent the latest ideas concerning these creatures with the exception of a magnificent bronze recreation of the Tyrannosaurus from the 1933 movie King Kong. While readers will recognize several of the paintings from publication in prior dinosaur books, many are presented here for the first time. This reader found the sculptures in this volume to be even more exciting than the pictures. Particularly stunning are the bronzes of various carnivores such as the 1/8 scale Giganotosaurus and Carcharodontosaurus, each one mounted on a base shaped like the continent on which it was found (South America and Africa respectively). I could go on, but it's better to let others discover the joys of this book for themselves. Hopefully Mr. Lanzendorf allows visitors to come and marvel at his collection as it would be worth a trip to Chicago for that alone.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
Fascinating, Inspirational, Quality Reproduction 2 May 2000
By James W. - Published on
Format: Hardcover
A great overview of life restorations of dinosaurs and other ancient creatures featuring some of the most talented contemporary artists. Excellent photographs of paintings, sculptures, graphite drawings - and lots of comments on the work and also bios of the artists. A real "kick-in-the-pants" book to leaf through to contemplate my own work. Outstanding - I want to visit the Lanzendorf Collection!
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Dinosaur Imagery:The Science of Lost Worlds and Jurassic Art 12 Nov. 2004
By Khemprof - Published on
Format: Hardcover
"Dinosaur Imagery: The Science of Lost Worlds and Jurassic Art" (The Lanzendorf Collection) photographed by Michael Tropea is a wonderful art collection book by John J. Lanzendorf, with the imagery of dinosaurs that are awe inspiring. Small as coffee table books go, but the art contained within its pages is rather breathtaking.

There is statuary, hanging art, and sculpture all depicting dinosaurs of museum quality artwork of different settings. If you like "dino-art" then you'll truly love this book as you get to see just a fraction of the John J. Lanzendorf collection. Lanzendorf has collected "dino-art" for decades and has amassed quite a collection. I've seen part of his collection exhibited at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois on a past visit to the "Windy City" and it is a sight to behold. This book does a good job at depicting the art in a favorable light.

But, if you ever get the chance to visit the Field Museum and they have the Lanzendorf collection on display it is worth taking a look. This book about the Lanzendorf Collection does an honorable job of displaying the art so the masses can see what is in the collection. There are numerous contributors to this book, far to many to mention ing the short review, but all of notarity. The book has four distinct chapters and they are as follows:

Extinct--but not Dinosaurs
"Fearfully Great Lizards" of the Triassic
Jurassic Art
A Creataceous End to and Lost World

There is an excellent epilogue and related references and credits and contact information contained in this book. All in all, I gave this book the full and strong 5 stars that is deserves for depicting excellent art and presentation.
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