What are the best books about art history and art in general?

asked by Anonymous
167 contributors
29 solutions
  1. 25

    #1Art History's History

    Art History's History

    Art History's History by Vernon Hyde Minor is a great book about contemporary art history. It is very easy to read and contains several illustrations of famous works of art.


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    Olivia Thomas
    Written on April 11, 2018
    "Art History's History is an enjoyable book and it is written in a way that art lovers and non art lovers can enjoy it. The author is a renowned art historian and displays beautiful art in the book as well. This book will please those who just love history and those who love art. I recommend it highly."
  2. 22

    #2Seven Days in the Art World

    Seven Days in the Art World

    Seven Days in the Art World by Sarah Thornton is a magnificent book that tells us what happens in the world of art. Its pages show us status, creativity and the love for the good taste.



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    Raymond Larson
    Written on April 7, 2018
    "This book is okay, but not the best. It worth your time reading."
  3. 21

    #3The Power of Art

    The Power of Art

    The Power of Art is a beautiful book written by Simon Schama that tells the evolution of eight famous masterpieces. The text also includes amazing pictures of these work of arts.


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    Catherine Burke
    Written on April 1, 2018
    "A wonderfully presented book of art. All in color and will be a piece you will revisit and want to share. "
  1. 18

    #4The Rape of Europa

    The Rape of Europa

    The Rape of Europa: The Fate of Europe's Treasures in the Third Reich and the Second World War is a historical nonfiction book written by Lynn H. Nicholas. The Rape of Europa was published in April 12, 1994 by Knopf.

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    Christina Walters
    Written on April 29, 2018
    "Very interesting story, the very little known story of what happened to all the clasical art in Europe during such a tumultuous time. The stealing, lying and hiding of art by the Nazis and how we got it back. "
  2. 15

    #5Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling

    Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling

    Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling by Ross King is a non-fiction biographical novel first published in 2000. This book was nominated for the National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism.

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    Megan Mendoza
    Written on April 6, 2018
    "It is very specific to a group of people. I wasn't interested."
  3. 14

    #6Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo

    Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo

    Frida: A Biography of Frida Kahlo is a book written by historian Hayden Herrera. It chronicles the life of the renowned Mexican artist, including her childhood, her romantic interests, political ideologies, and her art.

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    Olivia Hudson
    Written on April 6, 2018
    "This is my absolute favorite history book, it's got a lot of really great details and information that I didn't know before reading. Definitely really interesting. "
  4. 13

    #7A Life of Picasso: The Prodigy, 1881-1906

    A Life of Picasso: The Prodigy, 1881-1906
    A Life of Picasso: The Prodigy, 1881-1906 is a biography of the famous Spanish painter, Pablo Picasso, written by John Richardson. It is the first volume in the three-volume biography, chronicling his childhood in Málaga.
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    Richard Grant
    Written on April 7, 2018
    "I love this book. Very nice to have one !!"
  5. 5

    #8Art and the Bible: Two Essays

    Art and the Bible: Two Essays

    Art and the Bible: Two Essays by Francis Schaeffer is a Christian literature novel originally published in 1973. This book explores the relationship and significance of art to Christ and the Bible.

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    Concepción Jímenez
    Written on April 9, 2018
    "What an interesting read! I was looking for art history books, and I wouldn't have noticed this one on a shelf if it wasn't suggested to me. Lots of fascinating information in there, and I'm glad I read it."
  6. 3

    #9The Italian Renaissance

    The Italian Renaissance
    The Italian Renaissance by John H. Plumb is a historical non-fiction novel originally published in 1961. This book examines the great time period of the Italian Renaissance in the fields of science and art.
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    Dennis Torres
    Written on April 7, 2018
    "This book is written for a reader that is familiar with the times and Italian people. It details more intricacies making it a fascinating read!"
  7. 1

    #10The Lives of the Artists

    The Lives of the Artists

    The Lives of Artists is a book written by Giorgi Vasari, translated from the original Italian by Julia Conway Bondanella and Peter Bondanella. It chronicles the lives of thirty-six men who greatly influenced the Renaissance art movement.

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    Jordan Watkins
    Written on April 11, 2018
    "The Lives of Artists is a book written by Giorgi Vasari, that chronicles the lives of thirty-six men who greatly influenced the Renaissance art movement. These biographies of the great quattrocento artists have long been considered among the most important of contemporary sources on Italian Renaissance art. "
  8. 1

    #11Vincent's Colors

    Vincent's Colors

    Vincent's Colors is a children's picture book produced by the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It includes reproductions of Van Gogh's paintings with snippets of his letters to his brother, Theo, who he talks to about his paintings.

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    Mario Montiel
    Written on April 11, 2018
    "I came on here looking for the best books about art history and art in general. I am taking a course in school and I wanted some supplemental material. I was told to try Vincent's Colors. This seems to be exactly what I was looking for. "
  9. 0

    #12Making Comics: Storytelling Secrets of Comics, Manga and Graphic Novels

    Making Comics: Storytelling Secrets of Comics, Manga and Graphic Novels

    Making Comics: Storytelling Secrets of Comics, Manga and Graphic Novels is a non-fiction book by Scott McCloud. Originally published in 2006 by William Morrow Paperbacks, it provides an analysis of the art of drawing.

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    Emma Black
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "Scott McCloud produced an innovative and insightful guide to the art of producing visual literature. It is engaging, deeply entertaining and extremely informative. The analysis provided is invaluable to one starting out or honing their art."
  10. 0

    #13The History Book (Big Ideas Simply Explained)

    The History Book (Big Ideas Simply Explained)

    The History Book by R.G Grant is a history novel originally published in October 2008. This book belongs to the Big Ideas Simply Explained series published by the Dorling Kindersley Publishing Staff.

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    Elizabeth Wood
    Written on April 16, 2018
    "I was a poor student in school, and history was my worst subject. This book as me lapping up what you couldn't have shoved down my throat as a youngster. Sure, I've matured some toward learning (now in my 60s), and the Kindle is way more comfotable and convenient than the heavy, awkward textbooks we had then, but these authors and organizers deserve some big-time credit for this work way beyond that. This is writing that doesn't just impart information; it gives you the sense of almost being there. Five stars allthe way! -"
  11. 0

    #14Color

    Color

    Color: A Natural History of the Palette is an art history book written by Victoria Finlay.  It is first published in 2003 by Random House Trade Paperbacks. 

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  12. 0

    #15Art and Beauty in the Middle Ages

    Art and Beauty in the Middle Ages
    Art and Beauty in the Middle Ages is a non-fiction book written by the Italian writer Umberto Eco and translated by Hugh Bredin. Art and Beauty in the Middle Ages was published on February 8, 2002 by Yale University Press. 
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    Brandon Carpenter
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "Art and Beauty in the Middle Ages is a great books about art history and art in general"
  13. 0

    #16A Perfect Red

    A Perfect Red

    A Perfect Red is a non-fiction art history book written by Amy Butler Greenfield. It was first published in 2005 by Harper Perennial. 

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    Doris Fox
    Written on April 23, 2018
    "While this book is a very good read, I wouldn't say it is the ideal book for art, and it's history. It does focus on aspects of this, but it is mainly written about one red dye was introduced, and it's the history of the red dye color. I wouldn't say it is a good book for an overall book about art, as it doesn't top the charts in this genre. However, it is very interesting, and surprising keeps readers very interested in what many would find dull and boring: red dye!"
  14. 0

    #17Bright Earth

    Bright Earth
    Bright Earth: Art and the Invention of Color is an art history non-fiction book written by Philip Ball. It was first published in 1999 and reproduced by University of Chicago Press. 
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    Wu Wen
    Written on April 19, 2018
    "I found this a terrific book. I learned so much about art and art history."
  15. 0

    #18Color and Meaning

    Color and Meaning
    Color and Meaning: Art, Science, and Symbolism is an art non-fiction book written by John Gage. It was first published in 1999 by University of California Press.
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    Luis Gómez
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "A book for those interested in what color truly is. Aspiring artists and painters might learn a thing or two about how picking the right color can help with their work."
  16. 0

    #19Picasso

    Picasso

    Picasso is a classic non-fiction biography book written by Gertrude Stein. This memoir is first published in 1938 by Dover Publications. 

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    Sara Montgomery
    Written on April 29, 2018
    "A Picasso is a Picasso is a Picasso (okay, just kidding here). If you love Picasso, this has to be on your 'must read list.' I mean, a book by Gertrude Stein about Picasso? It's really a must read. But for the general public who just wants a book about art history, well, move on down the line. There are MUCH better books out there that will help you in that venture. This is a particular book by a particular writer - not a general book for the general audience. "
  17. 0

    #20Secret Language of Color

    Secret Language of Color

    Secret Language of Color: Science, Nature, History, Culture, Beauty of Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, & Violet is an art history non-fiction book written by Joann Eckstut. It was first published in 2013. 

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    Joseph Richardson
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "The art history is very fun to review. The new secret language of colors that I have discovered are perfect. Like that I can read offline when there is no internet connection or I just want to relax.."
  18. 0

    #21The American Resting Place

    The American Resting Place
    The American Resting Place is a retelling of 400 years of America's history in tombs, gravestones and various burial practices. The book was published on May 15th, 2008 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.
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    Marilyn Carr
    Written on April 15, 2018
    "I found this book quite interesting. While it's not a book about art history or art in terms of what we expect art to be, it's quite engaging. It describes cemeteries around the United States and who is buried in them. It provides a good history of each and is quite thorough in explanation. The pictures show some of the architecture in the cemeteries which is art in and of itself. "
  19. 0

    #22Everybody's Autobiography

    Everybody's Autobiography

    Everybody's Autobiography is a classic non-fiction biography book written by Gertrude Stein. This memoir is first published in 1937 by Exact Change. 

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    Gregory Franklin
    Written on May 4, 2018
    "Everybody's Autobiography is the best book about art history and art in general that I have ever read. The book is humorous and serious and reflective, a must read for anyone interested in the works of Gertrude Stein."
  20. 0

    #23Roy G Biv

    Roy G Biv

    Roy G Biv is an art history non-fiction book written by Jude Stewart. This art design reference book was first published in 2013 by Adams Media. 

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    Johnny Fernandez
    Written on April 18, 2018
    "Roy G Biv is not really about art history, but it does explore the basics of color: the primary tool of at an artist's disposal to relay emotions through their work. This book explores how we perceive color and what it means to describe certain objects by its use."
  21. 0

    #24Paris France

    Paris France
    Paris France is a French classic non-fiction biography book written by Gertrude Stein. This memoir is first published in 1940 by Peter Owen Publishers. 
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    Guillermina Salinas
    Written on April 26, 2018
    "All the Paris lovers find themselves in this book. It is a perfect summary of the capital of love and fashion. This book describes France's capital in every single detail."
  22. 0

    #25Awakening Genius in the Classroom

    Awakening Genius in the Classroom
    Awakening Genius in the Classroom is a guidebook for teaching written by Thomas Armstrong. It was released in July 1998. It is about how educators can inspire students to reach their creative potential.
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    Marilyn Munoz
    Written on May 2, 2018
    " I am always on the look out for books that will enhance my ability to understand art. There are so many fascinating subsets and I was as far from an art major as you can be in college. Armstrong’s book would be great for anyone who is trying to teach others how to appreciate art, though this was not my favourite book overall. I found it more focused on teaching art appreciation, then actually appreciating art. If I had a good friend who was a professor I would definitely give this to them. "
  23. 0

    #26Lucian Freud

    Lucian Freud
    Lucian Freud is a nonfiction history and contemporary art book authored by William Feaver published on September 5, 2003 by ABRAMS. It presents a collection of unforgettable nude portraits.
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    Zhao Song
    Written on May 15, 2018
    "This book is full of hundreds of amazing paintings. Freud is right up there in the elite group of painters and the work in this book will prove that."
  24. 0

    #27The Fall of Berlin 1945

    The Fall of Berlin 1945

    The Fall of Berlin 1945 is a historical nonfiction book written by Antony Beevor. The Fall of Berlin 1945 was published on April 29, 2003 by Penguin Books. The book's first publication was in year, 2002.

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    Aaron Taylor
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "Great book to read, written well, very in detailed. A fascinating insight of a dark moment in history "
  25. 0

    #28Handbook of Creativity

    Handbook of Creativity

    Handbook of Creativity is a comprehensive guidebook on creativity written by Robert J. Sternberg. It was originally released in November 1998. It has 22 chapters on how to think creatively.

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    Zachary Watson
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "Handbook of Creativity sounds like one of those stereotypical self-help or "x" for dummies type of books but don't just it by its unassuming cover. There is some really good information about creativity and exactly what it means to be creative."
  26. 0

    #29The Lady and the Unicorn

    The Lady and the Unicorn
    The Lady and the Unicorn is a historical fiction novel written by Tracy Chevalier. This book was originally published in 2003 by HarperCollins. It entails the story behind the creators of the famous painting - The Lady and the Unicorn.
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    Vishal Patil
    Written on May 5, 2018
    "I purchased the hardcover edition of this book which is magnificent in detail. I was excited to read about the historical exploration of how an artist's creation came to exist. This is a tale about Nicolas des Innocents, a 15th-century painter who falls into forbidden love with a wealthy Parisian's daughter. The biggest issue that I have is the historical aspects are not accurate in my eyes. It doesn't mean I couldn't enjoy the story at all, but it stood out to me as I continued to read. I suggest to read "Girl with a Pearl Earring" if you find this book doesn't suit you in the way you hoped."

Summary

Best What are the best books about art history and art in general
RankSolutionsTypeVotesPrice
1Art History's HistoryBooks 25 Paid
2Seven Days in the Art WorldBooks 22 Paid
3The Power of ArtBooks 21 Paid
4The Rape of EuropaBooks 18 Paid
5Michelangelo and the Pope's CeilingBooks 15 Paid
6Frida: A Biography of Frida KahloBooks 14 Paid
7A Life of Picasso: The Prodigy, 1881-1906Books 13 Paid
8Art and the Bible: Two Essays Books 5 Paid
9The Italian RenaissanceBooks 3 Paid
10The Lives of the ArtistsBooks 1 Paid
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