The books in the Art and Ideas series, which will cover everything from Fra Angelico to Frida Kahlo, are supremely pleasurable to read. In this volume, for example, Anthony Hughes writes dryly of a Michelangelo sculpture of Christ, which was tinkered with and damaged during installation in March 1521: "Since then, more tampering has taken place.... From the late sixteenth century, Christ's genitalia were hidden beneath a bronze loincloth, although that did not prevent a zealous Dominican from trying to remove the penis." Written by scholarly experts who know how to turn a phrase and focus a gaze, the books are filled with hundreds of crisp, color reproductions that give purely visual pleasure and information. Their handy size, 6 1/4 by 8 1/2 inches, makes them easy to carry in a briefcase or backpack, and the text is printed in an easy-to-read typeface, with generous spacing. Even the time lines, biographies, and glossaries in the back are inviting to the eye. There will eventually be more than 100 volumes in the series, which is comparable to Thames and Hudson's World of Art series.
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Citizens from a Noble Line
These Great Masters
Readiness and Triumph
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