8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2009
After visiting the exhibition, I thoroughly enjoyed reading this catalogue/descriptive volume. There are a number of chapters covering different aspects of Byzantine art and artifacts, and linking them into the history and society of the time. The quality of the illustrations is outstanding, and if you are not able to get to the exhibition, this book is worth possessing and enjoying at leisure.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 4 January 2011
Having attended the exhibition @ The Royal Academy, my husband really wished to
purchase this book, unfortunately we couldn't afford it on the day, so I was delighted to find a copy on Amazon (who were excellent !).
On receiving this book for Christmas, said husband was VERY happy!!
We were able to relive the exhibition and so much more.
The book is a classic.. full of all the information you could ask for about this period in history.
The photography is wonderful and easily explained.
The book brings to life all the wonders and beauty of the art and culture of this time, and is a pleasure ro read/browse through.
I and husband..thoroughly recommend it to anyone interested in this era, especially if you missed the exhibition.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 22 March 2009
The Byzantine empire lasted over one thousand years, the precise chronology is given in the exhibition title "Byzantium:330-1453" held at the Royal Academy of Arts, London, until March 22nd.
There is no consensus on the merit of Byzantium and its contribution to world civilization as the verdict of its severest critic, British historian Edward Gibbon attests.
But whatever one's judgment is on Byzantium nobody can deny the brilliance of the exhibition.
The character of Byzantium is defined by its Hellenism and Eastern Christian Orthodoxy. Artistic techniques, such as the use of gold, silver and ivory and above all the painting of icons and frescoes, remained at an exalted level of excellence throughout the turbulent history of the empire. The exhibition has brilliant examples of this excellence gathered from museums in Greece, throughout the Balkans, Italy and America.
The presentation of items ranging from late Roman gravestones, to an 11th-century incense burner and Italo-Cretan religious art suggests a worthy successor to ancient Rome, that later became a worthy precursor to Renaissance.
The exhibition's stellar pieces comprise ten icons from St Catherine's monastery of Mount Sinai, including famous ones of Moses and Archangel Michael. With their restrained excellence, they exemplify an Eastern Christian view of matter and spirit that far exceeds national boundaries.
The quality of text and images in the catalogue is exemplary.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on 11 March 2009
A book about the great art and the civilization of the Hellenic Empire 330-1453. An empire because of the international currency of the roman law of the christian religion of the internal organization of the greek education and of the assurance and self-reliance that they were an empire.