Generally as far as art books are concerned it's hard to beat Taschen for value for money. Even a paperback such as this has a more solid than usual lined cover. This book takes you from Dix's early Van Gogh inspired oils of 1910-1913 through his horrifying comic style war cripples,jazz portraits,that curious mix of high life and low life that typifies pre Nazi Germany with some very stunning and powerful works. Essentially a realist painter, his style, or rather styles, somewhat mellow, understandably with the rise of Hitler and the 'Degenerate' art attacks. A parralel with Shostakovich and the 'Stalin threats' is obvious, but as where with Shostakovich we get a focusing and a gradual rise to the pinnicles of his art, with the older Dix we see a somewhat treading of water and a resignation, the humour goes and a Germanic fantasy is ordered in. After the war, up until his death in 1969, there is no real return to 'the height of his powers' of the twenties. The 'self portrait with fur cap' of 1947 is stylistically back with the post-impressionist inspired early works. However Dix is always interesting and his works of all periods have a great clarity about them. He's a painter and this is a book I wouldn't want to be without.