Venice

by Martin Gayford

£30.00

History

Hardback

9780500022665

Published by Thames & Hudson Ltd

Published October 2023

Books > History

City of Pictures

A visual journey through five centuries of the city known for centuries as ‘La Serenissima’ – a unique and compelling story for both lovers of Venice and lovers of its art.

Venice was a major centre of art in the Renaissance: the city where the medium of oil on canvas became the norm. The achievements of the Bellini brothers, Carpaccio, Giorgione, Titian, Tintoretto and Veronese are a key part of this story. Nowhere else has been depicted by so many great painters in so many diverse styles and moods. Venetian views were a speciality of native artists such as Canaletto and Guardi, but the city has also been represented by outsiders: J. M. W. Turner, Claude Monet, John Singer Sargent, Howard Hodgkin, and many more.

Then there are those who came to look at and write about art. The reactions of Henry James, George Eliot, Richard Wagner and others enrich this tale. Nor is the story over. Since the advent of the Venice Biennale in the 1890s, and the arrival of pioneering modern art collector Peggy Guggenheim in the late 1940s, the city has become a shop window for the contemporary art of the whole world, and it remains the site of important artistic events.

In this elegant volume, Gayford – who has visited Venice countless times since the 1970s, covered every Biennale since 1990, and even had portraits of himself exhibited there on several occasions – takes us on a visual journey through the past five centuries of the city known ‘La Serenissima’, the Most Serene. It is a unique and compelling portrait of Venice that will delight lovers of the city and lovers of its art.

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