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114 of 117 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The life of a troubled artist revealed
I have always enjoyed reading Andrew Graham-Dixon's books, as well as watching his many TV series on different subjects or themes. Knowing very little about Caravaggio I looked forward with some anticipation to this book. And I'm pleased to say reading it has been a richly rewarding experience. I read in an article earlier this year that the author had been working on...
Published on 1 July 2010 by D. P. Mankin

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31 of 36 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Ok, but somewhat disappointing.
Being a huge fan of Caravaggio, I was quite excited to see this new book, and ordered it.

I quite enjoyed the first part, the background to Caravaggio's life and the political/cultural/religious atmosphere of Milan.

However, as I progressed I found that -in my opinion- the author makes far too many guesses on motivation and interpretation than are...
Published on 4 Oct. 2010 by casinitaly


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5.0 out of 5 stars Review for Caravaggio A Life Sacred and Profane, 22 July 2014
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This review is from: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane (Paperback)
A Great book originally recommended by Lawrence Lewllyn-Bowen.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 18 Dec. 2014
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Gaston Etchegoyen (east lansing, michigan United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane (Paperback)
A wonderful book, delivered on time and as described
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Caravaggio: A Life Sacred & Profane, 29 July 2011
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Superb - can see why Andrew Graham-Dixon took 10 years to write it - the depth of background information from associates of Caravaggio to political climate etc. is staggering - my eternal thanks to Mr. Graham-Dixon for turning a novice art lover to a trainee disciple -
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane, 27 July 2011
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John Harvey "harpic04" (Nerja, (Malaga), Spain) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane (Paperback)
Andrew Dixon at his very best. It is erudite, but easy to read and understand- a rarity with scholarly pieces !
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book to immerse oneself in with real pleasure., 16 July 2011
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Mr. Geoffrey H. Fellows "Geoff Fellows" (Northampton, UK) - See all my reviews
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Very lay and unscholarly review....

Have always been interested in Caravaggio and his work and life, so when I saw that AGD was speaking about him (and promoting his book, of course) at Oxford in June I went along. So did about 300 other people! Excellent and entertaining talk, and the book is equally so in my view.

I always enjoy reading the analysis of the content of particular pictures and the messages which each contains, and I also enjoy any writing which puts a picture into the context of its time, so that I am informed what viewers at the time it was painted would have understood the image to mean.

AGD does all of this - and very well indeed. Thoroughly enjoyable, even is one is not an art historian/art graduate etc...
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Caravaggio, 10 Aug. 2010
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Very prompt delivery - at a great price - of an excellent book from an authoritative author who makes it a fascinating artists life an easy and enjoyable read
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4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars, 22 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane (Paperback)
Wonderful reading, but poor picture reproductions
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 10 Dec. 2014
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Excellent book
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Obvious First Choice, 27 Dec. 2011
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Eugene Onegin (Lincoln England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane (Paperback)
It is not very often that a serious piece of art historical writing rooted in the archives also manages to be be both readable and exciting. That is why it is such a pleasure to be able to fulsomely recommend this book to the layman and specialist alike. Andrew Graham Dixon has taken his stimulating but informed style so well deployed on television and used it to great effect in discussing the life and work of an artist as theatrical in deed as on canvas. The painting themselves are analysed with erudition mixed with a light touch making you want to look again at them not only as illustrations, but also in situ. However, where this book really scores is in Graham Dixon's masterly grasp of the historical context of Caravaggio's creativity-his argument about the great importance of St Charles Borromeo's Milanese 'pauperist' theology on the artist's preoccupation with the depiction of the poor in religious works is very convincing as is the role he assigns to the folk sculpture of the Sacro Monte in Vacello in shaping the supreme physicality of Caravaggio's paintings. Even more significant to the success of this book is how the latest archival discoveries from the legal archives of Rome and Malta have yielded crucial new insights into the exact circumstances which prompted Caravaggio to commit murder in 1606 and later to be expelled from the Knights of Malta. Consequently this is a biography which inspires confidence and is as grounded in fact as any we are likely to get. There is one caveat to this symphony of praise and that is the illustrations: they are too small and too dark and anyone wanting to get the most from Graham Dixon's commentaries will need a second book with higher quality reproductions. Nonetheless, this volume will be essential reading for all admirers of the artist and art historians more widely. However, for those who have never read a book about Caravaggio and lovers of high quality non-fiction in general then this comes very strongly recommended.
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars not an easy read, 29 Aug. 2011
This review is from: Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane (Paperback)
I bought this as I really enjoyed Andrew Graham Dixon's TV series on Art of Russia,Spain and Germany. This book is a very detailed 'academic' account of Caravaggio's life and work and has obviously been a labour of love for the author. I wouldn't say it is an easy read and you really need to be a Caravaggio fan to read the whole book.
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Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane
Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane by Andrew Graham-Dixon (Paperback - 22 Jun. 2011)
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