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" Which is precisely what he does. Beginning with naturalism and ending with photorealism, with many stops along the way, this compact overview documents the shifts, both in terms of technique as well as subject matter, that differentiate each style from its predecessors. Each ism gets a two-page spread, with a beautifully reproduced example facing a page that details what the style is, when and where it was popular, famous practitioners, important characteristics, and a paragraph explaining what makes the work shown a good stylistic example. Raczka doesn't often choose the most famous painting—or even the foremost artist—associated with a specific style, but instead finds something kids may be unfamiliar with, which ensures they will be looking with fresh eyes. An obvious choice for museum-bound children to glean a few basics of what they're about to see, this is also indispensable for any middle-grade classrooms introducing art history. Grades 5-8. --Ian Chipman --This text refers to the Library Binding edition.

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Gr 4-7-This book looks at stylistic movements in Western art from the birth of Naturalism during the Renaissance through the 20th century, ending with Op Art and Photorealism. Unfortunately, the conversational narrative and detailed observations that characterized Raczka's Here's Looking at Me (2006) and Where in the World? (2007, both Millbrook) are reduced to a minimum here-to the book's detriment. Instead, each style is profiled using a fixed set of questions, with the answers presented as lists, short paragraphs, and bullet points. The art chosen to illustrate each style is in some cases perfect-van Eyck's The Arnolfini Portrait illustrates Naturalism; in others, surprising-Courbet's The Stone Breakers is a little-seen painting that is nonetheless a fine choice to illustrate Realism. However, some selections miss the mark. Turner's Snow Storm is used as an example of the Romantic style, but unless viewers are familiar with Turner's other paintings, this one will appear more Impressionistic or even abstract. This title fills a gap, but most libraries would be better served by a more comprehensive art history book for young people, such as Antony Mason's A History of Western Art (Abrams, 2007) or Claudio Merlo's The History of Art (Peter Bedrick, 2000).-Paula Willey, Baltimore County Public Library, Towson, MD Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.

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