Pictures and Tears: A History of People Who Have Cried in Front of Paintings

Front Cover
Taylor & Francis, Feb 23, 2004 - Art - 256 pages
10 Reviews
Art Does art leave you cold? And is that what it's supposed to do? Or is a painting meant to move you to tears? Hemingway was reduced to tears in the midst of a drinking bout when a painting by James Thurber caught his eye. And what's bad about that? In Pictures and Tears, art historian James Elkins tells the story of paintings that have made people cry. Drawing upon anecdotes related to individual works of art, he provides a chronicle of how people have shown emotion before works of art in the past, and a meditation on the curious tearlessness with which most people approach art in the present. Deeply personal, Pictures and Tears is a history of emotion and vulnerability, and an inquiry into the nature of art. This book is a rare and invaluable treasure for people who love art. Also includes an 8-page color insert.

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Review: Pictures & Tears: A History of People Who Have Cried in Front of Paintings

User Review  - Abe Something - Goodreads

I enjoyed Elkins' attempt to decode what moves humans to tears when viewing paintings specifically. Paintings do not move, they do not always have immediately clear stories to tell, they are silent ... Read full review

Review: Pictures & Tears: A History of People Who Have Cried in Front of Paintings

User Review  - Carol - Goodreads

Hmmmm...what to say. Thus book was mentioned in Alexander McCall's Smith 44 Scotland Street Series book "The Imporance of Being Seven" in reference to Antonia's emotional reaction to beauty when she ... Read full review

About the author (2004)

James Elkins is Professor at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. He is the author of many books, including How to Use Your Eyes and What Painting Is, both published by Routledge.

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