Art: A New History
by Paul Johnson
Paul Johnson turns his great gifts as a popular and much-translated historian to a subject that has enthralled him all his life: the history of art. ... Show synopsis Paul Johnson turns his great gifts as a popular and much-translated historian to a subject that has enthralled him all his life: the history of art. Art, he believes, was central to human development, more so than writing and even language. This history begins with the earliest rock paintings around 30,000 BC and takes us right up to the present day. E.H. Gombrich's legendary book The Story of Art (pub 1950, sales now over 6 million) owes its popularity to the directness and simplicity of the writing and its clear narrative. These are the same qualities for which Paul Johnson is justly celebrated and they are the foundation of this book. Illuminating with a few words the whole atmosphere of a period, he also suggests a number of overrated periods (such as the Impressionists) while drawing attention to wonderful but unjustly neglected artists, periods and styles, especially in Scandinavia, Germany, Russia and the Americas.