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Georges De LA Tour and His World [Paperback]

Philip Conisbee , Georges Du Mesnil De LA Tour , Jean-Pierre Cuzin , National Gallery of Art (U. S.) , Kimbell Art Museum
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

June 1996 0894682628 978-0894682629
This beautiful volume presents a complete overview of the work and world of Georges de La Tour, once nearly forgotten but now considered one of the greatest painters of seventeenth-century France. Drawing on new technical and art historical material, the book explores such topics as La Tour`s development, the replication and dissemination of his work, his place as an artist in Counter Reformation Europe, and the parallels that link his work with that of other European artists.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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From Publishers Weekly

Like his contemporary, Caravaggio (represented here by one picture), Georges de La Tour is best known for his dramatic use of chiaroscuro, particularly for his Nocturnes, in which a single candle lights a figure. This year, an exhibition currently at the National Gallery of Art through January 5, 1997, gathers nearly 50 pictures by the artist and his contemporaries under the rubric Georges de La Tour and His World. The accompanying catalogue, edited by Philip Conisbee, looks at de La Tour's development, influence, his subject matter and the northern Caravaggisti, through essays and 178 illustrations (95 in color).
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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5.0 out of 5 stars Arts in Lorraine Nov. 7 2001
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
That only taxes and death are certain would sum up what we know for sure about GEORGES du Mesnil DE LA TOUR AND HIS WORLD. Just as his native Lorraine lost its independence to France, so was he factored out of the art world during the 250 some years after he died in 1652. His "flea catcher"; "hurdy-gurdy player," variously mistaken as the work of 17th-century Spanish masters Herrera the Elder, Maino, Murillo, Rivera, Velazquez, and Zurbaran; and my favorite, Jacques Callot-type "newborn child" have been recognized as the most beloved of his art of Dutch- and Flemish-type earthy realism and luminously softened colors, eerily flickering light and spectacular lighting effects, finely drafted clothing and hair, highly focused and tensely concentrated mood, and minimal expressions, forms and gestures subtly cluing character. He excelled in not only the theatrically controlled daylight manner, with the henpecked "old man" and thin-lipped "old woman" of the piercing eyes and the careworn "old peasant couple eating" in worn clothing with pulled stitches accented by light brushstrokes and rubbed-thin paint, but also the deeply shadowed and dramatically night-time style, with "denial of St Peter" and "dream of St Joseph. Read more ›
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Amazon.com: 4.2 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Arts in Lorraine Nov. 7 2001
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
That only taxes and death are certain would sum up what we know for sure about GEORGES du Mesnil DE LA TOUR AND HIS WORLD. Just as his native Lorraine lost its independence to France, so was he factored out of the art world during the 250 some years after he died in 1652. His "flea catcher"; "hurdy-gurdy player," variously mistaken as the work of 17th-century Spanish masters Herrera the Elder, Maino, Murillo, Rivera, Velazquez, and Zurbaran; and my favorite, Jacques Callot-type "newborn child" have been recognized as the most beloved of his art of Dutch- and Flemish-type earthy realism and luminously softened colors, eerily flickering light and spectacular lighting effects, finely drafted clothing and hair, highly focused and tensely concentrated mood, and minimal expressions, forms and gestures subtly cluing character. He excelled in not only the theatrically controlled daylight manner, with the henpecked "old man" and thin-lipped "old woman" of the piercing eyes and the careworn "old peasant couple eating" in worn clothing with pulled stitches accented by light brushstrokes and rubbed-thin paint, but also the deeply shadowed and dramatically night-time style, with "denial of St Peter" and "dream of St Joseph." His subjects ranged from the everyday life of ordinary people, as in his boys blowing on a charcoal stick and a firebrand, "girl blowing on a brazier," and my favorite "payment of taxes" with a Jacques Bellange-styled unsettling atmosphere of crowded space, deeply shadowed eyes, meticulously folded drapery and unusual candle-cast shine to arms and faces; to music, with "cornet player," "musicians' brawl" of gesturing arms and gnarled hands around beautifully painted musical instruments and lively highlighted weather-cracked and wrinkled faces, Jean Appier aka Hanzelet-type "woman playing a triangle," and "young singer"; to nonreligious moralizing with all the furtiveness and sideways glances by cheats with the aces of clubs and diamonds in Fontainebleau school-styled solidly brushed half-length figures and Simon Vouet-type colorfully light fine materials, "dice players," and my favorite "fortune-teller"; to religious meditations with "adoration of the shepherds," Job with his broken bowl for scraping sores and his Jacques Bellange-styled highwaisted wife, and such Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio- and Hendrick ter Brugghen-type ordinary people caught up in extraordinary events as saints Alexis, Andrew, Anne mothering Mary and grandmothering Jesus, Francis in ecstasy, James the Less of the brushy arthritic hands, Jerome the scholarly ascetic with a bloodstained knotted rope against self-indulgence, John the Baptist in the wilderness, Jude Thaddeus, Mary Magdalene sorrowing over her sins, Philip of the crystal buttons ingeniously refracting light onto his jacket, Sebastian tenderly cared by Irene and her tearful assistant, and Thomas transformed from doubt to toughly unflinching faith. I particularly like the way he showed children behaving goodly with "Christ with St Joseph in the carpenter's shop" and "education of the Virgin." Ever since reading Aldous Huxley I have wondered which three books I would take to a BRAVE NEW WORLD: chances are that one would be editor Philip Conisbee's carefully written, gorgeously illustrated and well-organized book, because I have loved de La Tour's art ever since learning about him from my artist mother and sister during my student years and because this one-of-a-kind, reader-friendly book plants his first American exhibition so firmly in the art world that, what with GEORGES DE LA TOUR in French by Paulette Chone, Pierre Rosenberg and Bruno Ferte, and Jacques Thuillier and what with David Huddle's upcoming LA TOUR DREAMS OF THE WOLF GIRL and Christopher Wright's THE MASTERS OF CANDLELIGHT, he should never be dislodged again.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Holy Mother of Mary! Jan. 5 2005
By Jill Malter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book shows thirty great paintings by what I consider the second-best French painter of the seventeenth century (to me, but to very few others, Simon Vouet was the best).

Those who haven't seen Georges de La Tour's paintings will be struck by the fact that the backgrounds are typically dark black. That was his style. He'd paint the design, starting with the light colors. Then he would add darker colors to it. And he'd finish up with a very dark background.

We see people paying taxes. We see a peasant couple. A hurdy-gurdy player. Brawling musicians. Dice players. There's a great work showing someone cheating at cards. In the version in the Louvre, the cheat has the Ace of Diamonds behind his back. La Tour did a copy of the painting, which is in the Kimbell Art Museum in Fort Worth, but in that one, the cheat holds the Ace of Clubs!

Some of the paintings have religious significance. Three of them involve Magdalene and a skull. Another shows Irene tending to the wounded Saint Sebastian. And there are paintings of the Holy Family. One is of Jesus and Saint Joseph in Joseph's carpenter's shop. Another is of Saint Anne (Mary's mother) teaching Mary to read. One more is of Anne and Jesus. And yet another is of Anne, Mary, and Jesus.

The detail in all these paintings is stunning. And the expressions on the faces of La Tour's characters are remarkable.

I recommend this book.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Girl with a Candle Nov. 14 2013
By Adele Chatelain - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
One of my very favorite artists. When I was a teenager, living in Detroit, on Saturdays I used to go to the Detroit Institute of Arts to see Georges de La Tour's 'Girl with a Candle' ; a small painting that really spoke to my heart and soul. I finally bought a book of his paintings.
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Joseph the Carpender in his shop with the Child Jesus -Topic Jan. 4 2011
By JR Cody - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I have been ad admirer of Georges de la Tour for years. I have seen his works in Museums. I was anxious to have a print of my own. I have had experience hanging prints and photos in local museums and have an Art History degree. I mention this just to let you know that I understand Chiarosuro technique. Surely I am not attempting to match the technique of an oil classic. However I feel the print that was purchased by my husband via Art.com is too dark.
The iconic elements and symbolic representation cannot be seen. I will be returning this print and hope to ask Art.com if they can replace it, instead of just cancel my order. The frame was fine and the package arrived in good shape. It is just the rendering of the print itself that is (totally) unsatisfactory.
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