Great Works 50 Paintings Explored

Great Works by Tom Lubbock

50 Paintings Explored

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Format: Hardback, 216 Pages
ISBN: 9780711232839
Publisher: Frances Lincoln
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The best of Tom Lubbock, one of Britain's most intelligent, outspoken and revelatory art critics, is collected here for the first time.

There are electrifying insights - using Hitchcock’s Suspicion to explore the lighting effects in a Zurbarán still life, imagining three short films to tease out the meanings of El Greco’s Boy Lighting a Candle - and cool judgements - how Vuillard's genius is confined to a single decade, when he worked at home, why Ingres is really ‘an exciting wierdo’.

Ranging with passionate perspicacity over eight hundred years of Western art, whether it's Giotto’s raging vices, Guston’s ‘slobbish, squidgy’ pinks, Gericault’s pile of truncated limbs or Gwen John’s Girl in a Blue Dress, Tom Lubbock writes with immediacy and authority about the fifty works which most gripped his imagination.

TOM LUBBOCK, critic and illustrator, was the chief art critic of the Independent from 1997 until his death in 2011. He wrote widely on art, books and radio and produced major catalogue essays on Goya, Thomas Bewick and Ian Hamilton Finlay. His illustrations, mainly done in collage, appeared every Saturday on the editorial page of the Independent between 1999 and 2004. His weekly Great Works column, from which these essays are taken, ran between 2005 and 2010.
LAURA CUMMING is the art critic of the Observer.

Format: Hardback, 216 Pages
ISBN: 9780711232839
Illustrations: 50 paintings in colour
Size: 8.583 in x 0.335 in x 6.496 in / 218 mm x 8.5 mm x 165 mm


El Greco - Boy Lighting a Candle, Museo di Capodimonte, Naples

Francesco Zurbarán - Still Life with Jars, Prado, Madrid

Kasimir Malevich - Red House, State Russian Museum, St Petersburg

Joan Miró - The Hunter, Catalan Landscape, Museum of Modern Art, New York

Johannes Vermeer - View of Delft, Mauritshuis, The Hague

Giovanni Francesco Caroto - Young Boy holding a Child’s Drawing, Verona

Philipp Otto Runge - The Child in the Meadow, Kunsthalle, Hamburg

Vincent van Gogh - Wheatfield with Lark, Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam

Paul Nash - Event on the Downs, Government Art Collection, UK

Eugène Delacroix - Still Life with Lobsters, Louvre, Paris

Jacopo Tintoretto - Paradise, Thyssen-Bornemisza Collection, Madrid

Peter Doig - Concrete Cabin (West Side), Private collection

John Constable - Study of Clouds, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford

Francis Bacon - Sand Dune, Fondation Beyeler, Riehen, Basel

Peter Paul Rubens - The Dying Seneca, Alte Pinakothek, Munich

Homoré Daumier - The Burden, Private collection

Edgar Degas - Combing the Hair, National Gallery, Oslo

Gustav Klimt - Water Nymphs, Zentralsparkasse der Gemeinde Wien, Vienna

Masaccio - The Expulsion from Paradise, Sta Maria del Carmine, Florence

Luca Signorelli - The Resurrection of the Flesh, Orvieto Cathedral, Umbria

Théodore Géricault - Study of Truncated Limbs, Musée Fabre, Montpellier

Philip Guston – Painter’s Table, National Gallery of Art, Washington

Rembrandt van Rijn - Lucretia, National Gallery of Art, Washington

Vittore Carpaccio - The Apparition of 10,000 Martyrs, Gallerie dell’ Accademia, Venice

Gerhard Richter - 1024 Colours, Centre Pompidou, Paris

Bernardo Bellotto - The Ruins of the Old Kreuzkirche in Dresden, Kunsthaus, Zürich

Nicolas Poussin - Landscape with the Ashes of Phocion, Walker Gallery, Liverpool

Juan Sánchez-Cotán - Still Life with Quince, Cabbage ... , San Diego Museum of Art

René Magritte - Swift Hope, Kunsthalle, Hamburg

Albrecht Altdorfer - Alexander’s Victory, Alte Pinakothek, Munich

Giovanni di Paolo - The Beheading of St John the Baptist, Art Institute of Chicago

Fernand Léger - Holly Leaf on Red Background, Private collection

Winslow Homer - Right and Left, National Gallery of Art, Washington

Francisco de Goya - The Dog, Prado, Madrid

Paulus Potter - The Wolfhound, Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg

Camille Pissarro - Place du Théâtre Française, Los Angeles County Museum of Art

Caspar David Friedrich - On the Sailing Boat, Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg

Giovanni Bellini - Madonna with Saints, San Zaccaria, Venice

Edward Hopper - Early Sunday Morning, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York

Henry Fuseli - Silence, Kunsthaus, Zürich

Gwen John - Girl in a Blue Dress, National Museum of Wales, Cardiff

Edouard Vuillard - Interior, Mother and Sister of the Artist, MoMA, New York

Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres - Madame Moitessier, National Gallery, Washington

James Barry - Jupiter and Juno on Mount Ida, Sheffield City Art Galleries

Giotto di Bondone - Inconstancy, Anger, Despair from Vices, Scrovegni Chapel, Padua

Pietro Longhi - The Presentation, Louvre, Paris

Antonio Pollaiuolo - Apollo and Daphne, National Gallery, London

Jackson Pollock - Stenographic Figure, Museum of Modern Art, New York

Jeremy Moon - Hoop-La, Tate Gallery, London

Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec - The Bed, Musée d’Orsay, Paris


Picture Credits

An endlessly lively and surprising book.

If you want to know why plenty of us thought that Tom was far and away the best art critic of our generation, you should buy and relish Great Works which reprints with handsome reproductions of each image, fifty of his short essays for The Independent… Utterly free of cant, posturing and received ideas, they teem with the kind of insight that only comes from protracted looking and profound lucid thinking. Buy copies for everyone you know who likes art and wants to know how it can be talked about with beautiful sanity and zero guff.

One of Tom Lubbock's nicest habits as an art critic was to observe some quirk in a piece of art and, while distracting you with this magician's cloth and illuminate the whole work. It was a regular trick of the short essays he wrote in his 'Great Works' series: a preparatory manoeuvre priming you for the big picture. Published posthumously as a collection, Great Works deepens a neat journalistic  technique into a profound way of seeing.

An outstanding book.