Versailles Hardcover – 1 Mar 2012
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About the Author
Valerie Bajou started her career as Curator at Musee d'Orsay, she is now Curator at the Chateau de Versailles. The author of a thesis on French painter Fantin-Latour, she also published monographs on Frederic Bazille, Eugene Carriere and Monsieur Ingres. A renowned specialist of French painting in the nineteenth century, she collaborated to produce a number of exhibitions on this theme. She is also a teacher at the Ecole du Louvre in Paris.
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Top Customer Reviews
I have visited Versailles four times and, whenever I go somewhere like that, I like to buy a book or at least a guide book to take home with me. With Versailles, I have always been disappointed on that front. The last time I went, I bought nothing. The time before that I had to walk down to the Tourist Information Centre in town to get a decent guidebook.
This one is what they should be selling. I can't believe I bought it on Amazon for £12.99. If this had been in the gift shop in Versailles I would have paid about 35 Euros without a second thought.
The binding is a bit strange. It's hardback on the front and back but not the spine. The paper is good quality and the amount of photos you get for your money is brilliant. It's photo-heavy. If you want something with more text and information I would look elsewhere.
It's not perfect. For me, there isn't enough focus on the gardens and the two Trianon palaces. The quality of the photographs is not as good for the gardens and the only picture of my favourite fountain (Enceladus) is so pointless it shouldn't be in there.
Overall, though, and for the money, I'm really glad I've got this. Now, if they could make a similar one about Vaux-le-Vicomte or Chambord, I'd be really happy.
The text is written by Valérie Bajou, a curator at Versailles, and translated into English by Antony Shugaar, an experienced translator.
The preface is written by Béatrix Saule, Director of the National Museum of the Palace of Versailles and the Trianon. The book is divided into four chapters:
** Chapter 1 - The History of Versailles
** Chapter 2 - The Château, i.e. the main building
** Chapter 3 - The Gardens and the Park
** Chapter 4 - The Château of Trianon
Chapter 1 is relatively short (merely 14 pages). Here we have mainly text and a few illustrations. The other chapters are much longer. Here we have mainly illustrations, but each chapter begins with a brief introduction. At the end of the book we have an index of artists and photo credits. There is no bibliography (for some suggestions, see the PS below).
The photos in this book are taken by several professional photographers; all photos are supplied by an agency - RMN - which works with the administration of the Versailles Museum. In this way, all photos can be considered official.
In addition to the fabulous photos which show the outside and the inside of the buildings as well as the park, this book also contains reproductions of numerous paintings which decorate the rooms and the halls of the museum. The number of illustrations is overwhelming. All illustrations are in colour, and the quality is extremely high.Read more ›