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Kandinsky (The World's Greatest Art) Paperback – Illustrated, 23 Mar 2006


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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Flame Tree Publishing (23 Mar. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1844513904
  • ISBN-13: 978-1844513901
  • Product Dimensions: 17 x 2.5 x 16 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 191,453 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By W. BUTLER on 16 Jan. 2010
Format: Paperback
For those who have at least 20 other Kandinsky books I still recommend buying this little paperback as it contains a great many reproductions of his watercolours which are not to be found elsewhere. As the originals are mostly small their colour quality is exceptionally good too. Some much sharper than in the 2 big and heavy Kandinsky Watercolour Tomes.

Never seen by me before one of his Fauve oil on cardboard landscapes called "Dunaberg" (1909). Surely the earliest example of his ability to juxtapose large areas of his 2 favorite colours - royal blue and pale yellow? Flame Tree also managed to get hold of 3 rare beautiful non-abstract paintings from his 6 "fallow years" in Russia.

For these and many other rarities this publication is a great buy for every Kandinsky fan. Where it falls short is a small book cannot possibly do justice to his large early works. But even the catalogue for his recent major triple exhibitions was unable to accurately reproduce his free form pre-WW1 virtuoso exercises (representing The Last Judgement etc). Perhaps this is why a decision was made by the editors to keep examples from what's known as his "genius period" down to a minimum.

But one cannot fault the scholarship which accompanies each reproduction. The author clearly has great insight into Kandinsky's motivation throughout his continually evolving spiritual/artistic phases. The one weakness in his approach it is he insists on relating each painting to works by other artists. a needless exercise which only causes confusion as virtually all his "connections" are debatable. In any case words are useless when trying to explain how every line and colour he put down in his Bauhaus years had already been worked-out in his head.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Gareth Greenwood on 28 July 2009
Format: Paperback
This book is organised into five sections: 1. Life, 2. Society, 3. Places, 4. Influences, 5. Styles and Techniques. Each section contains facing pairs of pages showing reproductions of the artist's work and accompanying commentary in relation to the theme of the section.

At 300+ pages you get 150+ pictorial reproductions. Bracketing all the pictures are a foreword and introduction at the front and a bibliography and index at the end. For me this format is a winner. It works well for Kandinsky's abstract geometric paintings for which the small page size seems less of a problem than for other artist's works.

The Life and Influences sections of the book are particularly good in discussing Kandinsky's relationship with the Bauhaus as well as with the Soviet avant-garde. Ultimately he was regarded as a maverick by both and his artistic relationship with Paul Klee was the most enduring (though not without its ups and downs).

If you like Kandinsky, you'll probably like this book. If you know nothing about him, it's a good place to start. My local branch of "The Works" sells books in this series at £2.99 and at the cheaper prices available from Amazon market place, you simply can't go wrong
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By J. Mcdonald TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 26 July 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a useful, economical and eminently portable little volume; nice to leaf through and informative. The presentation has the text on one page with a good-sized reproduction on the facing page, the most sensible format for a paper-backed edition - no double-paged spreads resulting in breaking the spine of the book. My only real criticism is that there are no picture dimensions given, so scale can only be guessed at. I would have preferred the pictures to have been in a more strict chronological order - but that's a minor quibble. Kandinsky is an artist whose development from the representational to the abstract is easily followed (at least in his earlier work), so in my painting classes I use this book to demonstrate his progression to my students; he's quite a popular artist but it's always nice to see the light-bulb go on in a student's head when they work out what he's done!
I look at this book frequently myself; a good introduction to Kandinsky`s work with lots of full colour illustrations. Very good value, highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have always been an admirer of Kandinsky's work, and especially of his early pictures.
Many of these are featured in this book. it;s thematic presentation provides much food for thought.
It is a beautifully produced little book, which I look forward to exploring.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
BUY THIS FOR THE MANY KANDINSKY RAIRITIES 13 Mar. 2012
By W. BUTLER - Published on Amazon.com
For those who have at least 20 other Kandinsky books I still recommend buying this little paperback because it contains a great many reproductions of his watercolours which are not to be found elsewhere. As the originals are mostly small their colour quality is exceptionally good too. Some much sharper than in the 2 big and heavy Kandinsky Watercolor Tomes.

Never seen by me before one of his Fauve oil on cardboard landscapes called "Dunaberg" (1909). Surely the earliest example of his ability to juxtapose large areas of his 2 favorite colors - royal blue and pale yellow? Flame Tree also managed to get hold of 3 rare non-abstract paintings from his 6 "fallow years" in Russia.

For these and many other rarities this publication is a great buy for Kandinsky fans. Where it falls short is a small book cannot possibly do justice to his large early works. But even the catalog for his recent major triple exhibitions was unable to accurately reproduce his free form pre-WW1 virtuoso exercises (representing The Last Judgement etc). Perhaps this is why a decision was made by the editors to keep examples from what's known as his "genius period" down to a minimum.

But one cannot fault the scholarship which accompanies each reproduction. The author clearly has great insight into Kandinsky's motivation throughout his continually evolving spiritual/artistic phases. If I have any fault to find with the author's input it is that he relates every reproduction with a work of another painter. A time-wasting digression as it's hard enough to fathom what Kandinsky is getting at without creating even more confusion. In any case words can never explain how every line and color he put down in his Bauhaus years had already been worked-out in his head. One never sees a correction - despite only being able to use the primitive old-fashioned ink pens and compasses available way back when.

If ever there were 2 cases of "the best being the enemy of the good" Kandinsky and Prokofiev are prime examples. Both men overcoming constant upheavals in their private lives but never never letting this interfer with their highly personal revolutionary inspiration. Making us all beneficiaries of the Russian 19th century upper-class system.
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