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Art for Dummies (For Dummies)

3.62  ·  Rating details ·  133 Ratings  ·  13 Reviews
If you've always wanted to find out more about art but felt intimidated by the overeducated art world, then you've found the answer. Art For Dummies is the book that will have you and everyone you know clamoring outside the doors of your local museum. Thomas Hoving, former director of New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, is credited with revolutionizing the Met, doubling ...more
Paperback, 382 pages
Published September 24th 1999 by I D G Books Worldwide
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Dec 19, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
I have been thinking about this book all week due to Thomas Hoving's death last week. He was so enthusiastic about reaching a new audience and embraced the Dummies format despite being a very sophisticated individual. One of his charms (and I am sure he also had his critics) was his ability to engage with anyone. In conjunction with the launch of the book, he agreed to take a group of Barnes & Noble buyers (plus me, my then boss, and Mrs. Hoving) for a "If you only have an hour," tour of the ...more
Jul 22, 2012 rated it liked it

The book in and of itself was extremely informative,however, as is with art/music/food, etc., it is subjective to the personal taste of the Author. He delved on items he loved, and shared them with such relish! Truly a very relaxing, informative book.
Mar 27, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: history, art
Honestly, I'm embarrassed by the cover...but it was $1 on a library cart so I scooped it up. I'm a sucker for an art book at a good price.
May 23, 2017 rated it did not like it
Mar 20, 2013 rated it liked it
Mixed review here.

As a "what is art about anyway?" treatise it is completely useless, unless you like inadequate generalizations about art types, periods and movements (and the overuse of the word "marvelous"), or self-serving anecdotes about how important Hoving is to the art world. The works he goes on and on about are not illustrated, and the two sections of color illustrations are not good quality reproductions. The rest are muddy, small B/W images that do not do his words justice, and there
Jun 03, 2008 rated it liked it
Really good as an art history reference book; I made the mistake of trying to read it cover-to-cover as a make-shift art history course and got bogged down after the first half or so. I think I'd like it better if I had more patience for reading it in chunks and using it as more of a reference than a "story" of art.
Aug 08, 2014 rated it liked it
Good reference book - skimmed through it - perhaps an overkill if you just wanted a historic perspective
May 12, 2011 added it
Shelves: quit
Just skimmed this.
Aug 20, 2010 rated it liked it
One glaring omission: Georgia O'Keeffe. Arguably the most well-known female artist of all time, she is not mentioned anywhere in this book.
Oct 29, 2014 rated it liked it
I liked it, and the author imparted his enthusiasm about his faves (which were not always mine)
Apr 26, 2009 rated it really liked it
A good quick reference to find out what and where an artwork is located.
It is not good as an indepth reference of course.
Nov 22, 2014 added it
Not really rating this book; read it to become better at trivia. It served that purpose. Marinetti was the founder of futurism, for example.
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Thomas Pearsall Field Hoving was an American museum executive and consultant, best known for serving as the Director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

His books primarily focus on art-related subjects, including art forgeries, Grant Wood, Andrew Wyeth, Tutankhamen, and the 12th-century walrus ivory crucifix known as the Bury St. Edmunds Cross. His memoir, Making the Mummies Dance, details his yea
More about Thomas Hoving...

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