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History of Modern Art

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  5,226 ratings  ·  27 reviews
Authoritative and insightful, Arnason's History of Modern Art remains the definitive source of information on the art of the Modern Era from modernism's mid-nineteenth century European beginnings to today's divergent art trends. Now full-color throughout, this Fifth Edition has been completely redesigned to make it even more elegant and easy-to-use. New heads, subheads, an ...more
Hardcover, Fifth Edition, 848 pages
Published October 13th 2003 by Discontinued 3PD (first published December 12th 1931)
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After this book sitting around for years, I decided to actually read it from cover to cover. Not much depth... but, what can you expect in a book about THE HISTORY OF MODERN ART. Not much depth is what you can expect.

Perhaps this book is used for classes. Hopefully with supplemental texts.

Read this for my modern art class... for it being so expensive I wouldn't have expected so many black and white photgraphs...The text for this book is mediocre but it covers so much time that I guess its hard to get into any real detail... text mostly focusing loosely on the style of the paintings depicted in the book but gives a small amount of general background info on artists...The book also comes off as pretentious and opinionated in places, which lost it major brownie points with me… so I ...more
I read parts of this book for a class.
This book was a great read!
While Arnason's text is informative, this reads more like a piece of survey literature than a detailed account of the history of modern art. I highly suggest a supplemental text, such as _Theories and Documents of Contemporary Art: A Sourcebook of Artists' Writings_ (Kristine Stiles and Peter Selz) for a more complete experience.
Apr 10, 2010 Kent rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: artfags
Friends, at 832 pages this monumental text is a serious commitment (Okay yes there ARE lots of pictures!). It'll take me a while, but these eyes are on the prize. Next stop: the rise of the Impressionists and the Avante Garde. Gentlemen, and lady, please line up when I call your name: Manet, Monet, Degas, Renoir, Cassat...
If you're an art major trying to go through your art history class or just an aficionado, or someone looking for general knowledge, this could be a good starting point.

If you're serious about art criticism and theory you should check "Art since 1900" by Foster et al. That's an excellent starting point.
I read this for class. The first semester of 20th Century Art History at UW. I've read the first part about twice and am about to do my final for that. In a year i'll take the second half but i'm taking the book off the list for now. I'm though P438 and have learned so much
Copyright 1998. I still don't know enough about contemporary art, and I remember absorbing very little when this was my textbook. Many of the photos are B & W. Something to add to the "subjects to study further" list, with a newer book.
Not bad, although it could be a bit deeper in some places, although there is a very even distribution of information among the works covered by this book. Useful in classes and it came to a very good use by me.
Skye Williams
Great book high lighting major point, and keeping away from tedious information. Quality reproductions inside and a good addition to any art historian/artist library.
As I previously knew very little about art after WWI, I learned a lot from this book. It will help me to appreciate modern art more than I did before.
Hazar Bayindir
Well, I believe it is kind of impossible to read it all. But I am always reading that book, and I will keep reading for long years.
Mary Emily O'Hara
The latest black box to crack open in my year-long modern art survey course. So far so good! Definitely more reviews to come...
ah, art school. i actually read all of my art school text books, still have them, and still use them.
At least this is an art history book with some women artists mentioned! Great color plates....
this bbok was ok because the paintings were cool but the description was not that great.
Andrew Volpe
20th Century Art history course textbook, Westfield State College, 1999/2000.
Mar 06, 2007 yao is currently reading it
Recommends it for: art history buffs
beautiful picture book, heavy enough to break your foot twice
Ram Lakhan
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Text book for Modern Art history class!
Siri Alemany
Good text book, but a beastly read.
Boothe Family
Profoundly changed my life. ~ Steven
Aug 11, 2011 Sonu is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
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American art historian and administrator. He was born in Winnipeg, Canada, and studied there at the University of Manitoba, and subsequently at Northwestern and Princeton Universities. From 1947to1960 he was professor of art history at the University of Minnesota, from 1951 concurrently holding the post of director of the Walker Art Centre, Minneapolis. He is best known by a wider public for his m ...more
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