From the earliest days of human history, gold has stirred powerful passions in all who have beheld it. Its rarity, its brilliance and natural beauty, and its enduring associations with might and wealth have all ensured that it remains among the most treasured metals on earth. It should come as no surprise, then, that thepath through art history is also often paved with gold.
This opulently designed volume takes readers on a tour of gold in art from the second century to the present. Beginning with a gilded mummy portrait and series of religious-themed gold leaf backgrounds from late Antiquity, the book moves on to the use of gold in medieval art. From the Renaissance, the book presents exemplary interior and decorative arts. But the most extensive focus is on the use of gold in twentieth and twentieth-first-century art with a wide selection of works from, among many others, Willi Baumeister, Georg Baselitz, Victor Vasarely, Yves Klein, Andy Warhol, Max Weiler, Sylvie Fleury, Franz West, and George Condo. Together, the works demonstrate that, in contemporary art, the use of gold is not limited by theme, form, or style.
From Giandomenico Tiepolo’s grand History of the Porto Family in Vicenza to masterpieces by Friedensreich Hundertwasser, Gold—published to accompany a dazzling exhibition at the Belvedere Palace and Museum in Vienna—includes three hundred full-color illustrations documenting one of the most valuable and versatile media used throughout art history.
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