Watercolor : A History available to buy at Museum Bookstore

Watercolor : A History

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'More than 300 examples are gorgeously displayed in this large-scale volume in magnificent reproductions offering spectacular detail and enabling full appreciation of watercolor's most remarkable quality, its translucency' - Booklist

The most comprehensive and best-illustrated history of watercolour painting published to date

For hundreds of years, watercolour laboured in the shadow of oil painting; it was dismissed as a mere tool for creating preparatory studies, or as a “feminine” pastime. But, since the Renaissance, there have been artists who recognised the unique potential of watercolour: its luminosity, its immediacy, its ability to create atmosphere—qualities that derive directly from the quick-drying, translucent nature of water-based pigments. 

Moving from the Middle Ages to the early 20th century, the chief curator of prints and drawings at the Musée du Louvre expertly explores watercolour’s technical and creative complexities in exhaustive essays and over 300 full-colour illustrations, all specially printed on Munken paper to capture the intensity and texture of the original works.

Salé’s book covers well-known artists like Dürer, Turner, Delacroix, Sargent, and Cézanne, but also spotlights a number of brilliant, lesser-known watercolorists like the Italian Renaissance artist Pisanello, whose fresh, naturalistic animal studies could have been painted today.

Throughout Salé draws on the personal and professional writings of artists and critics, revealing the rich dialogues that have propelled the development of watercolour, as well as the social institutions that  have supported it, such as the nineteenth-century watercolour societies. A valuable appendix, also based in primary sources, traces the technical development of the medium.          

Details
  • Author: Marie-Pierre Salé, curator at the Musée du Louvre
  • Hardcover: 400 pages | 300 colour illustrations
  • Date published: August 2020
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-0789213730
  • Product Dimensions: 30.8 x 14.4 cm
Reviews

'exquisitely captures the vibrancy of this astonishing, essential medium and the artists who’ve made it come alive' - Hyperallergic

'More than 300 examples are gorgeously displayed in this large-scale volume in magnificent reproductions offering spectacular detail and enabling full appreciation of watercolor's most remarkable quality, its translucency' - Booklist

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