Top 10 Art Books of 2016 – India

 

Fine art must always be appreciated but the fact remains that so many of us have little or no exposure to the same which is why this list is important and essential. It has been collated from various sources and provides you with all the information and knowledge you need on fine art and underscores its enthralling beauty and the impact it has on the society as a whole.

 

The Art of Rivalry: Four Friendships, Betrayals, and Breakthroughs in Modern Art

This book gives you a front side seat to some of the most enduring rivalries and betrayals that modern art had ever seen. Instead of just giving you a ringside view to some of the best examples of modern art, what this book does is that it offers you a gleam of the person behind the painting, the artist himself. In the process, this book enables you to understand the fine nuances behind what makes each painting stand out and enables you to appreciate it all the more, once you get the backstory and the hidden rivalries behind some of the most famous modern artists, from Manet to Degas, from Picasso to Matisse, Pollock, De kooning, Freud and Bacon. It manages to paint a vivid picture of these artists themselves and forces you to understand their limitations and what drove them each day to perform better. A definite must read and it sure stands out as one of the best books.

Francis Picabia: Our Heads Are Round So Our Thoughts Can Change Direction

This book devotes itself entirely to understanding and comprehending Picabia’s art. Francis Picabia is and still remains one of the most diverse artists that the world has seen to date and while he traveled the world, he managed to transform each experience into a unique art form. He also happened to be one of the most versatile artists and created paintings that range from impressionist landscapes to nudes, data to abstract ones. Each of his work stands out on its own merit and this book manages to point out just why that is the case. It certainly provides you with a wealth of information that will enable you to appreciate Francis Picabia pictures as never before. This book certainly stands out for its detailed and nuanced approach and that’s why it is one of the top 10 art books of 2016

Eye of the Sixties: Richard Bellamy and the Transformation of Modern Art

This book centers around the life of Richard Bellamy an art dealer who pioneered the concept of “offsite” exhibitions. What this book does is that it takes you behind the scenes and enables you to learn what goes beyond most art shows and the work that most art dealers put into cultivating real talent and showcasing the same. Known for having championed some of the exceptional talents of the 70’s onwards, Bellamy’s contribution to the world of fine art is bought out in this book. The book itself is based on hundreds of interviews with artists who had worked with Bellamy including interviews with other collectors and museum directors as well. It is crisp, funny at times and at other instances extremely poignant. If you wanted to learn more about fine art than just the picture, then you need to read this book for it stands out as one of the best books.

Reductionism in Art and Brain Science: Bridging the Two Cultures

If you are looking for a book to explore the connections between humanities and neuroscience and fine art, then this one is it. Eric Kandel has put a lot of research into this book but that apart, this book is a fun read and showcases some of the connections between neuroscience and fine art. There’s a reason why scientists often use reductionism techniques when running their tests as it makes for an effective process and fine art is not that far behind as some of the modern artists from Mark Rothko to Dan Flavin who have managed to reduce art to fine shades and colors, by putting reductionism to good use. Eric paints a rather credible connection between the need to process information quickly and why techniques such as reductionism make more impact today. A definite must read, and it certainly stands out as one of the best top 10 books.

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Mounting Frustration: The Art Museum in the Age of Black Power

This book explores black history and the museum scene, just around the time of the civil war moment. It is a fact that nearly all museums denied African American artists equal space to showcase their talent and as a result, it saw a series of moments aimed at opening the museums up.  While the book explores the cultural connotations it also points out the absurdities to which various museums went on to deny African American artists their right to equal space – from Met’s “Harlem on my mind” which did not display the African American artists in the field to the one that tried to match tribal art with fine art. Needless to say if you wanted to explore fine art and the impact of African American artists on the art scene, then this book is the perfect place to start from; it certainly stands out as one of the best book recommendations.

Before Pictures

The book explores the life of one of the most well-known art critics and brings to fore the enduring beauty of fine art. While Douglas is more known for his legendary “Picture” shows that started of a new culture moment all on its own, this book takes a closer look at his formative years. This book is also like a biography enabling you to take a closer look at Douglas Crimp, a world renowned art critic who became a muse of sorts for many famous artists. This book showcases the very best of Douglas’ formative years when he worked as an art critic during the tumultuous years of the 60s and 70s. And in the process, this autobiography serves up a slice of rich verdant art history on a platter. It was during this time period that New York saw an explosion of fine art, from beautiful paintings to sculptures and Douglas had a front side seat to all of them. This book is a must read for all art students and it certainly enables you to appreciate the nuances behind each fine piece of art. This is why this book stands out as one of the top 10 art books of 2016

Chardin and Rembrandt

This book can best be described as a work of ekpharsis, where art is translated into rich verbose prose and Marcel Proust had written this book 20 years before publishing the same. The book certainly takes art appreciation to a whole new form and makes you understand why even describing a simple picture can be indeed be an art form in itself. From taking a closer look at some of the fine works of Chardin and Rembrandt, reading this book is sure to prove enthralling to all for its vivid imagery, rich descriptions of which this is a prime example “gleam and frisson”. This book will make you appreciate fine art like never before and teach you how to best describe an outstanding piece of art. This is why this book stands out as one of the best recommendations.

Les diners de Gala

This cookbook does the impossible as it marries fine art to fine cuisine, which in itself is so Salvador Dali. Salvador Dali often threw surrealism dinner parties along with this wife and this book, with its many illustrations perfectly combines the both to create a riot of color, taste and surrealism at its very best. If you happen to be one of those finicky calorie conscious eaters, then you may want to give this book a miss. However, if you wanted Salvador’s take on the art of fine cuisine, then you definitely need to read one of the top 10 art books of 2016

How to See: Looking, Talking, and Thinking About Art

If you ever wanted to know as to what makes art tick and why it has such a huge impact on society as a whole, then you definitely need to read this book. This book acts more like a guidebook into what is fine art and provides you with a closer look at some of the best examples of modern art of the 20th century and at the artists themselves. It certainly stands out and that’s why it is one of the best books.

Social Medium: Artists Writing, 2000–2015

This book explores some of the hidden connections between fine art and prose as it features some of the recent texts by modern artists. It features some of the very best and range from beautiful critique on art in general to downright weird. In all, it provides for an enthralling read and stands out as one of the best book recommendations.

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