Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Why a Painting Is Like a Pizza: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Modern Art” as Want to Read:
Why a Painting Is Like a Pizza: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Modern Art
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Why a Painting Is Like a Pizza: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Modern Art

3.72 of 5 stars 3.72  ·  rating details  ·  50 ratings  ·  8 reviews

The first time she made a pizza from scratch, art historian Nancy Heller made the observation that led her to write this entertaining guide to contemporary art. Comparing modern art not only to pizzas but also to traditional and children's art, Heller shows us how we can refine analytical tools we already possess to understand and enjoy even the most unfamiliar paintings a
Paperback, 192 pages
Published October 13th 2002 by Princeton University Press
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Why a Painting Is Like a Pizza, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Why a Painting Is Like a Pizza

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 89)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
I honest to g-d think this book should be required reading in high school or college. Not kidding. I think I'm going to blog about the book versus writing a review here, but suffice to say that Ms. Heller breaks down the inaccessible for her readers; she opens up a world that many of us had shrugged-off or run from before and allows to see why art--even the kind we think is ugly and/or confusing and/or ridiculous and/or "not really art"--is important and possibly not as far removed from the art ...more
What a great book! I have an informal background in art through my mother and grandmother who taught me some art history and appreciation of contemporary art in and around the museums and galleries of New York City in the 1970s and 80s. I think this book really clarifies modern art and how to approach it. The author has a nice writing style, and the examples she gives are well chosen.
Rick Eng
I was asked to help organize a gallery tour this spring because of my art history background. The focus are the art galleries that have clustered around Los Angeles Chinatown, contributing to the revitalization of the neighborhood. I need to find books to help me catch up on the issues regarding contemporary art and creative direction and issues facing artists today. Ms. Heller's book is a lucid and humorous approach to explaining abstract principles that are the basis of art created and art enj ...more
Steph O'Groove
I gave up. I don't want to seem too critical of a book I didn't finish, but the pizza analogy didn't really do it for me. I'm not an artist and will never claim to be, so I imagine this book is for people who don't assume a painting is like a pizza because they're both delicious. Zero stars not because the book is bad, just because it wasn't what I was looking for and couldn't finish it.
Very excellent explanation of various types of modern art and what to be aware of when studying it. Also a nice section at the back of questions and answers so next time someone says "That's not art, I could do THAT!" there's a rebuttal other than "Yeah, but you don't."
Helped increase my appreciation of modern and contemporary art, which I already liked. But I wish many people who do not like it would read this book too.
Michelle Howa
Required reading for my fine arts class. Interesting book, but would rather just enjoy the arts (not just read about them). :)
Liked it so much I bought it for my niece for Christmas!
Alexandra is currently reading it
Jan 28, 2015
Jennifer is currently reading it
Jan 23, 2015
Vita added it
Sep 07, 2014
Debbye added it
Jul 27, 2014
Allysa marked it as to-read
May 11, 2014
Helen marked it as to-read
Jan 02, 2014
Robyn marked it as to-read
Dec 14, 2013
Alejandra is currently reading it
Sep 28, 2013
Jeffrey Deng
Jeffrey Deng marked it as to-read
Aug 08, 2013
« previous 1 3 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
Women Artists: An Illustrated History Why a Painting Is Like a Pizza: A Guide to Understanding and Enjoying Modern Art Women Artists: Works from the National Museum of Women in the Arts Appreciating Art: An Expert Companion To Help You Understand, Interpret And Enjoy Women Artists: An Illustrated History

Share This Book