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Customer Review

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding work of reference at an unbelievable price, 23 Mar. 2012
This review is from: Modern Art: Impressionism to Today (Hardcover)
How does Taschen produce books of this quality at this price? Most other art books of this size and quality weigh in at £50 - 60 pounds and this collection has TWO volumes for the grand sum of around £25 making this incredible value.

My main reason for buying was to expand my understanding of the various movements in modern art and this 2 volume set does a wonderful job of outlining the environments that brought about movements such as impressionism, expressionism and surrealism (etc etc) whilst relating it all back to the key practitioners and key works of art.

The movements covered include:

1. Impressionism
2. Symbolism
3. Cubism
4. Expressionism
5. Futurism
6. Abstract art
7. Dadaism
8. Realism
9 Surrealism
10. Abstract expressionism
11. Pop art
12. Minimal art
13. Conceptual art
14. Post modernism

Some sections are larger than others but all are prefaced by an essay giving a good overview of the movement before delving into particular artist's and their selected works. The only negative point is that the introductory Essay to Post modernism is very short - half a page. All the others run to multiple pages anywhere between 8 - 15. I know quality is more important than quantity but for such a vast area of art half a page seems frankly neglectful. The artists sections have generally a page of text with one or two smaller examples of their work on the left with the right hand page being a large print of one of their works or a collection outlining their work. Some artist's are visited more than once in the same section. The book has a nice flow and it's easy to get a flavor of the artist's style and their contribution to the movement from just a quick glance.

The books are not only good to read squentially but it's also an easy to use reference quite suitable for a quick dip into a particular artist's work. The text, as usual with Taschen, is accessible but informative. The writing is not overly flowery or dense but equally not too superficial - a really nice balance.

The printed artwork is outstanding and with the pages of the books around A4 size the printed images are a real joy to look at and are large enough to appreciate the finer details. A few images are printed on a fold out page making the final image approach A3 in size. There are not many but the ones that are present are simply stunning.

The latter sections in volume 2 are taken up by a glossary of terms and artists bio's which are really great additions. The Bio's include the key dates in an artist's life and a list of their monograph's. Brilliant.

The presentation is also first rate. The volumes come in a very sturdy slip case and the sleeves are beautifully printed.

For anyone with even a passing interest in modern art or art in general this beautiful set would be a very welcome addition to their bookshelf.

Easy 5 star rating.
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