- Paperback: 48 pages
- Publisher: Dover Publications Inc. (28 Mar. 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0486249379
- ISBN-13: 978-0486249377
- Product Dimensions: 20.9 x 0.4 x 28.3 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 90,596 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Holbein Portrait Drawings: 44 Plates by Hans Holbein the Younger (Dover Art Library) Paperback – 28 Mar 2003
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From the Back Cover
Hans Holbein the Younger (1497-1543) ranks among history's most gifted and perceptive portrait painters. His objectivity, realism, and superb draftsmanship have influenced artists and commanded the admiration of the world for over four centuries.
This handsome volume presents 44 of Holbein's finest portrait drawings, created while he worked as court painter to Henry VIII. This artist's record of one of the world's most brilliant and tempestuous courts, in drawings and finished portraits executed with inimitable sensitivity and impeccable draftsmanship, is unique in the annals of history and art. Here are revealing, detailed depictions of a gallery of powerful personalities: Sir Thomas More; Jane Seymour; Edward, Prince of Wales; Anne Boleyn; William Warham, Archbishop of Canterbury; Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey; Sir Thomas Wyatt; Nicholas Bourbon the Elder; and many others. Informative captions provide identification of the sitters, dates, dimensions of the drawings, and notes on the media.
Today the original drawings can be seen only in the collection of the Royal Library at Windsor. This inexpensive Dover edition makes them widely available to all art lovers. Moreover, every effort has been made to retain the quality of the originals--subtleties of tone and shading, fine detail, and telling nuances of expression. The drawings comprise a priceless archive of important personalities in Henrician England, a record of great value to historians, scholars, costume and cultural historians--anyone interested in that turbulent era and the astounding painter who helped preserve it.
Dover (1985) original publication.
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Top Customer Reviews
It's such a pity, the originals are some of the most vibrant and fresh portrait drawings of any era and they are reproduced here with such total disregard for quality and fidelity.
Yes, it's a low cost publication, but I would have preferred ten good quality plates for the same money.
The publishers should be ashamed to produce such rubbish.
Dover Art Library's collection is useful for the student but suffers from being in monochrome; Holbein's drawings (despite the assumption of another reviewer that they are charcoal) were made in coloured chalks, often on tinted paper. Any coloured reproduction will show that Holbein was a master not merely of line but of the infinite subtleties of skin tones. Broad sweeps of rich colour often indicate those which will apear in the final oil composition.
Far more Holbein drawings survive than the oil paintings which in many cases were made from them. However, we have enough finished protraits to show the extent to which Holbein modified his observations in the process - not just when dealing with a near-psychopathic monarch, but when painting for quite ordinary clients. Mary, Lady Guildford, a buxom lady with a remarkable twinkle in her eye, was toned down to a sober matronliness for the finished job, while her husband's bland, relaxed face is sharpened into a more warriorly resolve. Anyone wishing to understand Holbein's skill would be advised to get a book with a greater range of his work in it.
This is an inexpensive book and does do what it says on the tin. A greater insight into Holbein's work can be found in the flawed but still valuable Holbein in England, which for a few pounds more has colour reproductions (not all as big as these) and some nice comparisons between drawings and oils.
There are no descriptions or background notes, but at this price you shouldn't expect them.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Love Holbien as I am particularly interested in portrait drawing. He is the master and one can learn so much.Published on 23 Oct. 2014 by Clarissa
Having seen a programme recently about the Holbein drawings I felt I should like a book to study them closer. This was inexpensive and very good for the money. Read morePublished on 10 April 2014 by jigsawing momma