cover image Oil Painting

Oil Painting

Rizzoli, Daval, Jean Luc Daval. Rizzoli International Publications, $37.5 (126pp) ISBN 978-0-8478-0628-7

A feast for the eye, this technical survey shows how oil painting techniques were adapted to artists' changing needs to represent light, color, space and emotion. The album is so lovely to look at, with many excellent color reproductions and closeups, that it will appeal even to readers who don't especially care that Gainsborough thinned his liquid paints with turpentine for greater speed. Oil painting is almost synonymous with painting itself, so effectively has it overshadowed watercolor, pastel, tempera and acrylic. Yet oils appeared only in the 15th century. Jan van Eyck used oil to perfect the illusion of depth. Daval has interesting things to say about how Raphael, Leonardo and Titian took to the new technique. Picasso used industrial enamel paints on some canvases to achieve raw emotional power. The 100 color reproductions include works by Vermeer, Hals, van Gogh, Goya, Turner, Ernst. December