Did you know that the Egyptians created the first synthetic colour; or that the noblest purple comes from a predatory sea snail? Throughout history, artist pigments have been made from deadly metals, poisonous minerals, urine, cow dung, and even crushed insects.
From grinding down beetles and burning animal bones to alchemy and pure luck, Chromatopia reveals the origin stories behind over fifty of history’s most vivid colour pigments. Spanning the ancient world to modern leaps in technology, this is the book for the artist, the history buff, the science lover and the design fanatic.
Longlisted for the 2019 Australian Book Industry Awards.
'A visual feast … sumptuous illustrations that make you want to rub your face in the plate and absorb the delicious goodness before you'
Art Book Review
'David Coles delves into the historic and scientific background of some of our favourite hues'
Homes & Antiques
'The surprisingly beautiful science behind how paint is made'
'A fascinating and absorbing read that's genuinely hard to put down'