Do you enjoy reading about art history? Me too.
Do you have the time to read a huge volume on the subject? I rarely do either, which is why I love this book and books like it.
The Annotated Mona Lisa by Carol Strickland gives a nice concise overview of every major era in art history, as well as featuring the lives and works of the painters and sculptors who made the greatest contributions to those eras.
One of my favorite features of the book is that it not only gives art history information, but it has sections that give side-by-side comparisons of what was going on elsewhere in the world at the time of each artistic movement. For me anyway, that really helps to give a better context and better level of understanding to specific works and movements in art history.
DK publishing puts out beautiful books similar to this one, but I actually like this one better. Sometimes DK has just so damn much on their pages that I don’t know where to look first. This book is only 182 pages so it's very succinct and it has more copy than pictures.
Basically if you want to read a more comprehensive book about a certain artist or movement, read this book first to give yourself some background and perspective.
Or read this book to get an idea of what artist or part of art history is your particular favorite, then go from there.
It’s all good!