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What Painting Is By James Elkins (Art Institute of Chicago, USA)

What Painting Is

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At the root of this tremendously original work is Elkins' desire to bring the study of art back to the studio to understand the artist's relationship to his or her medium.
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What Painting Is Summary

What Painting Is by James Elkins (Art Institute of Chicago, USA)

Unlike many books on painting that usually talk about art or painters, James Elkins' compelling and original work focuses on alchemy, for like the alchemist, the painter seeks to transform and be transformed by the medium.

In What Painting Is, James Elkins communicates the experience of painting beyond the traditional vocabulary of art history. Alchemy provides a magical language to explore what it is a painter really does in her or his studio - the smells, the mess, the struggle to control the uncontrollable, the special knowledge only painters hold of how colours will mix, and how they will look.

Written from the perspective of a painter-turned-art historian, What Painting Is is like nothing you have ever read about art.

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What Painting Is Reviews

..."an illuminating exploration of the pungent and visceral fecundity of the painter's workplace.."
-Nicholas Harding, "Sydney Morning Herald
..."colorful and entertaining... This is a richly interesting look at the worlds of alchemy and painting."
-Virginia Bryant, "Parabola, Summer 2001
..."this is a truly original book. It will make you look at paintings differently and think about paint differently."
"This is a novel way of considering paintings, and excitingly different from standard art criticism."
-"The Atlantic Monthly
"An inspired, poetic account of an artist's creation is revealed."
-"Reviewer's Bookwatch

About James Elkins (Art Institute of Chicago, USA)

James Elkins is Professor of Art History, Theory and Criticism at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is the author of many books, including The Poetics of Perspective (1994), The Object Stares Back: On the Nature of Seeing (1996), Our Beautiful, Dry, and Distant Texts: Art History as Writing(1997) and Why are Our Pictures Puzzles? forthcoming from Routledge.

Additional information

What Painting Is by James Elkins (Art Institute of Chicago, USA)
James Elkins (Art Institute of Chicago, USA)
Used - Very Good
Taylor & Francis Ltd
Book picture is for illustrative purposes only, actual binding, cover or edition may vary.
This is a used book - there is no escaping the fact it has been read by someone else and it will show signs of wear and previous use. Overall we expect it to be in very good condition, but if you are not entirely satisfied please get in touch with us.