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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still unparalleled as a work on this subject
It's a tragedy that most present day commentary on the figure in art seems never to mention this peerless work, and it reflects poorly on the state of modern art that the values Kenneth Clark esteemed most, purposeful expressiveness, spiritual worth and passion for form have given way to self-entrancement, psychobabble, pornographic shock and narrowly informed political...
Published on 24 May 2003 by Dion

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2.0 out of 5 stars Heavy going
Studying the nude in art appreciation and thought this might help but found it very heavy going.Too stuffy and after listening to a programme about him can now understand his style of writing.
Published 1 month ago by eann


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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Still unparalleled as a work on this subject, 24 May 2003
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Dion (Liverpool, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Nude (Paperback)
It's a tragedy that most present day commentary on the figure in art seems never to mention this peerless work, and it reflects poorly on the state of modern art that the values Kenneth Clark esteemed most, purposeful expressiveness, spiritual worth and passion for form have given way to self-entrancement, psychobabble, pornographic shock and narrowly informed political sloganeering.
What Clark pulled off with the release of this landmark book was achieved not just by an unquenchable enthusiasm for his subject, but also by the insight and critical virtuosity that comes only from decades of repeated acquaintance with great artworks. Reading this book for the first time, my feelings about works I thought familiar were constantly being reshaped. Possibly the most impressive aspect of the whole book is in the way that Clark establishes points of contact between the ethical and aesthetic climate in which a great work is created, and the passions and temperament of the individual artist. He breathes new spiritual life, sometimes with truly poetic results, into paintings and sculptures which we think numbed by overfamiliarity, and we can always sense that our core of knowledge is being comprehensively expanded. Clark claimed the Italian renaissance as his greatest field of expertise, and his passages on Michelangelo, particularly the Sistine Chapel nudes, are breathtaking.
As the preface's quote of Edmund Spenser reads, 'for soule is forme, and doth the bodie make'. And with this book, Clark elevates the love of form to such life-nourishing heights that it leaves feminist disapproval of 'objectification' and modern emphasis on 'the concept' looking petty and insubstantial. For those who are fascinated by art's representation of the body, The Nude will reacquaint you every delight it has ever given you. For those who aren't, your new love affair begins here.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 25 Jun 2014
This review is from: The Nude (Pelican) (Paperback)
A good book for the money!
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2.0 out of 5 stars Heavy going, 12 Jun 2014
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This review is from: The Nude (Pelican) (Paperback)
Studying the nude in art appreciation and thought this might help but found it very heavy going.Too stuffy and after listening to a programme about him can now understand his style of writing.
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The Nude (Pelican)
The Nude (Pelican) by Sir Kenneth Clark (Paperback - Sep 1970)
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