Abstract Painting: Concepts and Techniques (英語) ペーパーバック – 2005/9/1
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"Abstraction allows man to see with his mind what he cannot physically see with his eyes...Abstract art enables the artist to perceive beyond the tangible, to extract the infinite out of the finite. It is emancipation of the mind. It is an explosion into unknown areas."
- Arshile Gorky
Abstract Painting: Concepts and Techniques is a comprehensive guide to the history, methods, techniques, materials, and study of abstract art. It is illustrated with inspiring examples of work by 20th century and contemporary masters, including, but not limited to, work by:
Walter Darby Bannard
Vicky Perry has exhibited her paintings at La Mama's Gallery and Beulah Land in New York City's East Village and at many galleries and colleges throughout the U.S. She has won many awards for her work in national competitions. Perry lives in Red Hook, New York.
Barry Schwabsky, the noted art historian, critic, and poet, wrote the preface. He lives in London and New York.
And that's just the first great thing about it.
I've looked at it a dozen times in the two months I've had it and still find it fresh on every reading. I was fortunate to find it while browsing in a library in a city I was visiting and was overjoyed to find it again at Amazon.
This book makes me remember why I made the decision to paint non-objectively and reinforces that choice.
The examples she uses to illustrate are high quality reproductions of excellent art from accomplished praticioners and the chapter materials are perfectly chosen and ordered. There is nothing superfluous in the writing.
I'd say Ms. Perry has done us all a great service by writing this book and she should be very proud of it. Thank you, Ma'am!
I purchased this book before I found Brian Ryder's "Beyond Realism" (see my review of this book) and was initially as challenged by Vicky Perry's text as other reviewers. However, having now worked my way through Ryder's book (and two other's I mention at the end of this review) I found that the concepts and techniques in "Abstract Painting" began to click, and even found them refreshing and exciting. What is more, the examples of abstract art in Perry's book are from professionals, which are hardly open to criticism from amateurs. Okay, so I don't like them all either, but that can only be a plus: you can ask yourself - how would I express the artist's idea myself? (You can't do that with the one's you like - they've already made the definitive statement!)
This is no paint-by numbers book for two reasons: firstly, by its very nature, abstract art cannot be taught literally, in formal steps - as is technical drawing, for example. Secondly, the author quite reasonably assumes that the reader has some experience, not only in the fundamentals of art making, but also in basic forms of abstract expression. If you are short on either of these skills, you need to start elsewhere.
Contrary to what other reviewers claim, there are plenty of books available that can get a beginner started on abstract painting. It is just that such books are not necessarily titled "abstract." They tend to come under the cateories of design, or creativity. Even collage books like those of Gerald Brommer are a good introduction to abstract principles - with instruction included.
For the absolute beginner, I would recommend beginning with Mary Todd Beam's "Celebrate your Creative Self." All the exercises in this book are abstract, and clear instructions are given as to materials and techniques. You even get to copy to some extent! Next, I recommend Maxine Masterfield's "Painting the Spirit of Nature." That also gives techniques, but assumes more experience. Try Vicky Perry's Book after you have cut your teeth on these two - or something similar. I am sure you won't be disappointed.