30,000 Years of Art: The Story of Human Creativity Across Time and Space

Editors of Phaidon Press, Editor . Phaidon $49.95 (1063p) ISBN 978-0714847894

This enormous, extraordinary collection brings together 1,000 high-quality color illustrations, showcasing the evolution of creative arts over diverse cultures from prehistoric to modern times. Arranged chronologically, each piece is given its own page and a condensed summary of its provenance, key features and cultural context. Book-ended by a ritual “lion man” figurine from 28,000 B.C. found in a cave in southern Germany, and an as-yet-unfinished environmental sculpture by American artist James Turrell (materials: “Extinct volcano and light”), it also contains two time-lines, one covering major movements in the 13 cultures represented (Mesopotamia, Iran and the Arabian Peninsula; Anatolia and the eastern Mediterranean; Egypt and Africa; Europe; North America; Central America and the Caribbean; South America; Oceania; Japan; Korea; China; Southeast Asia; and Central Asia) and another comprised of a 28-page horizontal index that sets each piece against major world events. A 10-page glossary and comprehensive index completes this invaluable resource. Ably capturing the ancient and unsuppressible creative drive of the human spirit and the sweep of history, this is a book art lovers and cultural anthropologists—scholars and laypeople alike—are guaranteed to cherish. (Nov.)

Reviewed on: 12/31/2007
Release date: 10/01/2007
Genre: Nonfiction
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