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The Annotated Mona Lis...
Carol Strickland
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The Annotated Mona Lisa: A Crash Course in Art History from Prehistoric to Post-Modern

4.04 of 5 stars 4.04  ·  rating details  ·  2,179 ratings  ·  33 reviews
This second edition of Carol Strickland's The Annotated Mona Lisa: A Crash Course in Art History from Prehistoric to Post-Modern offers an illustrated tutorial of prehistoric to post-modern art from cave paintings to video art installations to digital and Internet media.Featuring succinct page-length essays, instructive sidebars, and more than 300 photographs, The Annotate ...more
Hardcover, 198 pages
Published December 31st 2007 by Andrews McMeel Publishing (first published June 1st 1992)
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Lena Nguyen
My AP Art History teacher distributed this to my high school AP art history class as a textbook, and as a friendlier companion to our monstrously bulky 1000+ paged art history textbook. The Annotated Mona Lisa really is a crash course on art history, covering much of the materials needed in about 200 pages. I literally had a cram study session with my friend the day before our AP Art History exam by reading through this entire book. I'm really glad i did too, because I felt I did really well on ...more
I really did love this book. I am not on artist, never did much with art growing up, but have learned to really appreciate art in my travels as an adult. I've been yearning to learn more about art--a little history, a little interconnectedness, a little about major themes, etc. This book was perfect for all of that. There was enough information to be informative and interesting, but not so much to feel overwhelmed. When I was curious about an artist or piece of art in the book, it was easy to go ...more
For years I have enjoyed observing art, but due to my understanding of its history, technique, and culture, I have been limited from fully appreciating it. Not anymore! The Annotated Mona Lisa gives a brilliant survey of art history from Pre-Classical to Postmodern. The author takes us era by era, artist by artist, introducing the historical events that caused shifts in technique and expression, and providing brief biographies of the most notable artists and architects. Having read The Annotated ...more
The subtitle of this book states it is 'A Crash Course in Art History from Prehistoric to Post-Modern'.

This is a fun, easy to read book that covers a wide spectrum of art throughout history.

While an obvious choice for art lovers it is also a good choice for aspiring artist in order to learn and recognize technique/style/etc.

A good alternative to dry, academic textbooks.

Learning Curve
Low: Good for new readers.
In my high-school art history class, we read Janson, Schneider-Adams and this. It is really great for someone who doesn't want to go through the trouble of studying art but still wants to understand it or talk about it. It is also really good for people like me who have a degree in he subject but have not actively studied since receiving said degree.
Krystal Booth
Great for a quick overview of Art History that can lead to a ridiculous amount of research topics of interest for anyone interested in art. It does not go into extensive detail about any of the artists or movements, but provides a great base for anyone interested in learning more about art history in general. Quick, easy read.
Patty Barnett
This is a great overview of art and artists. I use it as a reference when I need a bit of knowledge or as a quick refresher. Not a book to read from beginning to end but a book to read in pieces. And a book to keep.
This is the best book by far to have. Just put it in your collection. Good for a quick reference guide and lots of detail.
Donna Walsh
Really love this book, it is often my go to book to get me started if I am looking into an artist or period of Art History.
Rebecca Price
I have a degree in Art and a minor in Art History. I also have a degree in education. In order to get certified to teach Art I had to take the Praxis II Fine Arts test. This helped me review things I had not gone over in 10 years, and I was able to get a high score on my Praxis II. I highly recommend it.
I used this book to review for a state Art Education exam. When taking the exam, I was amazed at how many questions I found answered in this book. It has a great overview of history, media and artists. The only lack I found, and it's typical of so many art history review books, was a lack of worldwide art cultures. There was a quick review of some native cultures, but not a full overview of the multicultural subjects useful in today's classrooms.
Still, this book provides a great review or primer
Erez Davidi
As the title suggests, this is indeed a crash course in art history. For example, the author devotes a mere 11 pages to the Renaissance period. Having said that, this book is highly accessible for persons without any art background. Moreover, there are plenty of pictures to accompany the text. To sum up, aside from being a bit too shallow, this book will provide you with a basic understanding of art history in a enjoyable way.
This is my absolute favorite art history book/textbook - the first time I read it was in 1999, in my AP Art History class and have read through it every year since! I learned all the basics from this book and, since I loved it, that led me to major in Art History in college. Can't rave about it enough! I think there is a newer edition now as well.
used this for a class and felt it was direct material but often brief, well organized and visually appealing, basic information, good for a history class that is just briefly talking about an art movement or piece but not good if you were an art student or interested in a detailed art history text
Oct 15, 2008 Dacie rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Dacie by: University Art Instructor
Shelves: art
I read this during my Art in the Classroom college course. It was very useful and extremely interesting. Not at all boring like other required readings. It familiarizes the reader with the elements of art along with the history of it. I honestly did not want to put it down! I highly recommend it!
I read this during AP Art History and not only was it quite useful but it was extremely interesting. I found it problematic that there is short shrift given to art that isn't European and it gives primacy to painting, BUT it is cool for an overview. You just have be able to critical.
Great book. The most concise, comprehensive, interesting book I've found yet on art history. If you're looking to get an overview of major works by major artists, so you don't seem like an idiot at the next cocktail party, this book is the one to read.
again, SUPER basic but good for an intro. Basically one page per movement (except Impressionism, why is everyone so damn obsessed with impressionism?). It tries to cover art from the Venus of Willendorf through Earthworks in little snipits of info.
This was a bit of a nostalgia trip for me since many of the same images were used as slides in my Art History class back in college. The background of many of the artists are included and fascinating. Worth checking out!
This excellent little art history textbook is exactly what the title claims it to be. It's a great, easy-to-read, well-illustrated summary of art history without all of the ponderous detail found in heavier art history tomes.
Jul 21, 2011 Heather rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone studying for the DSST Art of the Western World
Wow, I'm finally done with this book! I haven't taken the test yet though, so I can't say for sure how it's going to help me on the actual test, but I think it has been a very invaluable resource in studying for the test.
Feb 19, 2009 Melissa rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Melissa by: Recommended reading for an Art history class I took at FCC
I've got all kinds of notes written in the margins. It was a great companion for an Art History Course I took my first year in college. I still like browsing through it and reading about different styles and artists.
Apr 19, 2008 Staci rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone interested in western art history
Recommended to Staci by: art educators
Wow! If you ever wanted a crash-course in Western art history, this is the book for you! I used this book to study for my art education certification exam. This book is highly recommended by me!!!
Spans art from prehistory to the 1980s and touches the tip of "what you should know" without being too chopped up. Interesting and useful for the nonspecialist.
This is a quick overview of art history. I read it because it's used by art teachers in GA schools but there's a lot to remember if you want to teach the content.
Wonderful for introductions to an artist or movement and giving you the most essential information. It's an effective springboard into the world of art.
This is an excellent crash course in Art history. It's not boring like most art history books and it's short with great pictures.
Sean Keefe
Brilliant brief overview of the entire history of art - you'll come out feeling MUCH smarter than you did going in!
i like mona lisa picture i like also the drawer of mona lisa
he draws nice pictures
Anita Caudle
Amazing crash course in Art History!
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Carol Strickland is the author of the historical novel "The Eagle and the Swan" published as an eBook and available from amazon for kindle and iPad. (See the book's website: She has written many non-fiction books and is an art critic/journalist.
Her two books on the history of art and architecture (The Annotated Mona Lisa: A Crash Course in the History of Art fr
More about Carol Strickland...
The Annotated Arch: A Crash Course in the History of Architecture The Eagle and the Swan The Illustrated Timeline of Art History: A Crash Course in Words & Pictures The Illustrated Timeline of Western Literature: A Crash Course in Words & Pictures Aris Kalaizis · Making Sky

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