Painting as an Art

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"There are books aplenty on painting and art, but this is the first to explain seriously what makes painting an art, and it is our good luck to have it from a notable philosopher who is also on an intimate footing with the tradition of Western painting and who knows how to stand in front of a painting and spin tales that sparkle with truth. . . . Mr. Wollheim's interpretations are bold, revisionary and cogent. Only a philosopher of his rare gifts, and a connoisseur with his command of the art-historical tradition, could possibly have the
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Ewing, New Jersey, U.S.A. 1987 Hard Cover Very Good in Very Good jacket Minor wear to book and DJ, pages clean, binding tight.

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Princeton, NJ 1987 Hardcover Bollingen Series XXXV-33 Like New in Like New jacket Over-Sized &/or Over-Weight Bk. 8vo-Up to 8"-9" Tall. 384 pp. Bollingen Series XXXV-33 issue ... only! Over-sized and/or over weight book; may require extra postage. Please note that large and/or heavy items may incur an additional shipping charge. An excellent, spotlessly clean copy and dust jacket! Clean, fresh, sharp, tight, essentially flawless copy and dust jacket with crisp pages, clean text, and very light shelf wear. Read more Show Less

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Overview

"There are books aplenty on painting and art, but this is the first to explain seriously what makes painting an art, and it is our good luck to have it from a notable philosopher who is also on an intimate footing with the tradition of Western painting and who knows how to stand in front of a painting and spin tales that sparkle with truth. . . . Mr. Wollheim's interpretations are bold, revisionary and cogent. Only a philosopher of his rare gifts, and a connoisseur with his command of the art-historical tradition, could possibly have the confidence to bring off his feat of virtuoso interpretation." --Flint Schier, New York Times Book Review "It is one of the achievements of Richard Wollheim's superb book that it offers an extremely subtle sense of the mind's functioning, while providing a theory of critical relevance: it shows how psychological and cultural factors enter a painting's content, and how arguments on relevance can be conducted in difficult cases." --Michael Podro, The Times Literary Supplement

Based on the Mellon lectures at the National Gallery this book goes into the psychology and philosophy of painting from Poussin to Picasso.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Wollheim notes that De Kooning crammed his pictures with the infantile experiences of sucking, touching, biting, excreting and swallowing. The expressionist's violent paintings are about the body as locus of sensation and emotion; they remind us that, as children, we felt threatened by our own natural bodily functions. Penetrating insights like these pepper the difficult lectures presented here along with some 400 illustrations. Wollheim, a philosopher of esthetics, offers a psychological theory of how pictures transmit meaning: artists act as agents, inducing in the mind of the spectator the mental states that compel them to paint. The author's favorites include Manet, Picasso, Titian, Bellini, Ingres, Poussin. These essays will help readers identify the unrepresented ``internal spectator'' lurking in some pictures; with other paintings, one discovers how the artist wanted the external spectator to feel. Wollheim delivered this set of lectures at the National Gallery of Art. (January)
Library Journal
Originally presented as the A. W. Mellon Lectures in the Fine Arts for 1984, this collection of essays focuses on Wollheim's psychological account of painting, in which he argues that two elements are important: the artist's mental state, which causes him to paint what he does, and the experiences the painting evokes in the viewer. Aesthetic theories centering on meaning as a core element in determining aesthetic value have had rough going because of the difficulty in knowing or interpreting what an artist ``means'' or ``intends.'' Yet Wollheim presents his case well. This is substantial, at times difficult, reading, but a definite contribution to the philosophy of art. Highly recommended. Terry Skeats, Bishop's Univ. Lib., Lennoxville, Quebec
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780691099644
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press
  • Publication date: 12/1/1987
  • Series: Bollingen Series
  • Pages: 384
  • Product dimensions: 7.55 (w) x 10.21 (h) x 1.30 (d)

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