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Modern Art in Detail

75 Masterpieces

Susie Hodge


Casts new light on 75 masterpieces of modern art, revealing details that even those familiar with the works may previously have missed

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Great works of art cannot be fully understood in a single encounter: to get the most out of modern art, it pays to revisit and reconsider, to reflect and to scrutinize in detail. It is also helpful to understand a work’s context: what has gone before, what it may be reacting against or extending, how it embraces new technologies, and how it relates to contemporary thinking on such subjects as politics, sexuality, identity and the role of the artist.

Modern Art in Detail: 75 Masterpieces spotlights the finer points that even those in the know may miss, casting light upon minutiae that a quick glance will almost certainly fail to reveal. Expert commentary reveals the subtle internal details and technical tricks employed by the artist to achieve particular effects. The book also looks at the themes and external and personal factors influencing the creation of an artwork – everything from global political events, to groundbreaking movements such as Cubism, Abstract Expressionism and Pop, and even scientific and mathematical theories, which are often of great relevance. The book examines 75 works of modern art, from Vincent van Gogh’s The Church at Auvers-sur-Oise, through Marcel Duchamp’s The Bride Stripped Bare by her Bachelors, Even and Francis Bacon’s Three Studies for a Crucifixion, to Jeff Koons’s Triple Elvis and Theaster Gates’s Face Over Time.

Approaching each work as part of a tradition that links the oldest work of art to the most recent, it deftly charts the shift from the supremacy of artistic technique to the more recent dominance of the idea behind the artwork itself, as well as being an enlightening, entertaining and accessible guide to a wide range of modern art.

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'A handsome and useful guide to how great paintings work their magic upon us'

'This inspiring book takes you where so many other art books fear to tread: up close … The results are revelatory'
Artists & Illustrators

'Written entertainingly and with clarity … Read this and you really will start to appreciate the mastery of the art of our recent times'
The Artist

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Product Information

Book Details

Format: PLC (with jacket)

Size: 23.5 x 22.0 cm

Extent: 336 pp

Illustrations: 650

Publication date: 19 October 2017

ISBN: 9780500239766

Contents List

Introduction • 75 artworks

About the Author

Susie Hodge is an art historian, author, artist and journalist with more than 100 books to her name. She has an MA in the History of Art from Birkbeck, University of London, and is a Fellow of the RSA. She has twice been named the No. 1 art writer by the Independent.