Words, Script, and Pictures: Semiotics of Visual Language

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G. Braziller, 1996 - Art - 199 pages
This volume contains two of Professor Meyer Schapiro's most important works on the complex and provocative relationships between writing and images. In "Words and Pictures: On the Literal and the Symbolic in the Illustration of a Text", Professor Schapiro examines the relationship between images and the texts that it is their function to illustrate. This relationship is far from simple, and lends itself to all sorts of variations, transformations, displacements, overflowings, and even contradictions that are ultimately symbols of "changing ideas and ways of thought". The second text, "Script in Pictures: Semiotics of Visual Language", is published here for the first time. For generations, medieval book art served as a prime field for the invention of styles of art and as the expression of individual sensibilities. Against this background, Schapiro elaborates on the intricate ways in which medieval artists transformed writing and images in their books, often integrating them to convey, in highly concise formats, their powerful messages. In some cases, a physical bond with language even determined pictorial factors. While Professor Schapiro focuses on medieval examples, he extends his investigation to modern art by analyzing script in the works of Goya, Picasso, Homer, and Manet.

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WORDS, SCRIPT, AND PICTURES: Semiotics of Visual Language

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Two dogged essays (one not previously published) on the illustration of text and the appearance of script within images, by the late, seminal art historian. Focusing on images from late antiquity to ... Read full review

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About the author (1996)

Meyer Schapiro (1904-1996) was a prolific art historian, critic, and teacher. His notable titles include "Modern Art, Romanesque Art, The Unity of Picasso's Art", and "Theory and Philosophy of Art".

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