Scandals, Vandals, and da Vincis: A Gallery of Remarkable Art Tales

Scandals, Vandals, and da Vincis: A Gallery of Remarkable Art Tales

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by Harvey Rachlin
     
 

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The secret histories of the world’s most famous masterpieces

Caravaggios, Rembrandts, Monets—the works of immortal artists such as these are indelibly imprinted in the public mind; they are priceless masterpieces whose beauty, artistry, and emotional impact have inspired admiration, awe, and envy through the centuries. Yet behind many of these

Overview

The secret histories of the world’s most famous masterpieces

Caravaggios, Rembrandts, Monets—the works of immortal artists such as these are indelibly imprinted in the public mind; they are priceless masterpieces whose beauty, artistry, and emotional impact have inspired admiration, awe, and envy through the centuries. Yet behind many of these brilliant paintings and sculptures are fascinating, unique histories. In Scandals, Vandals, and da Vincis, award-winning writer Harvey Rachlin relates in exciting detail how nearly thirty of these works came to be created and how they survived burglary, forgery, revolutions, ransoms, vandals, scandals, religious sects, and shipwrecks to eventually come to their current resting places

Editorial Reviews

Library Journal

In this book of art gossip and intrigue, Rachlin (Lucy's Bones, Sacred Stones, and Einstein's Brain) writes that for him, "the past is an obsession." Here, he provides breezy and sometimes riveting accounts of 26 famous paintings. All of these paintings and some of their histories are well known in the art world, although a few stories appear to be told publicly for the first time. Rachlin begins with the Mona Lisa, the world's most famous painting, then goes on to cover Gilbert Stuart's Athenaeum Head of George Washington, the world's most reproduced image (on the $1 bill), before ending with Dali's enigmatic Christ of Saint John of the Cross. Each story is introduced with a theme statement, which is often pedantic. Some of the stories, short as they are, are augmented with rhetorical questions, moralizing, and clichés, features that make the book most appropriate for adolescents with a budding interest in history or art history.
—Ilene Skeen

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780143038351
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
03/27/2007
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
634,476
Product dimensions:
5.46(w) x 8.12(h) x 0.82(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

Meet the Author

Harvey Rachlin is the award-winning author of thirteen books. He has written for the New York Times and numerous other publications.

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Scandals, Vandals, and da Vincis: A Gallery of Remarkable Art Tales 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Read this a few years ago. Very interesting. The stories behind the masterpieces
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The sample is only 16 pages, most of which contain the table of contents and the introduction. It wasn't enough to "grab" my interest, although the concept is interesting.