cover image Artists at Home

Artists at Home

Susie Hodge. Quarto, $45 (240p) ISBN 978-0-711-26943-9

Art historian Hodge (The Short Story of Art) takes readers on an illuminating tour of the homes and studios of 30 famous artists from the 19th century to the present. Combining brief biographical sketches with lush photos, Hodge spotlights a wide array of artists, including those whose environs were inseparable from their work (Claude Monet and his water lily pond in Giverny, France); those whose spaces became famous during their lifetimes (painter Frederic Leighton and the opulent London home where he showcased his work in the 19th century to thousands of visitors); and those intimately involved in their houses’ design, such as key arts and crafts movement influence William Morris, whose “Red House” served as an early example of the style. Naturally, artists’ spaces often reflected the subject and interests of their inhabitants: James Ensor decorated his townhouse with gaudy masks and other curiosities, and Rosa Bonheur’s 15th-century chateau (where she entertained the likes of Empress Eugénie, wife of Napoleon III) was filled with taxidermy. Taken together, Hodge’s selections prove that “artists’ homes are literally where art meets life.” Art aficionados will be enthralled. (Oct.)