The Louvre
by Alexandra Bonfante-Warren

A photographic tour of one of the world's greatest art museums
see also: The Musée d'Orsay

The Musée du Louvre--that is the museum that inhabits the Louvre Palace--is the world's largest museum, and also one of the world's most exciting places. Its buildings offer a journey through time, while its galleries display works--from over eight centuries--that arouse the full range of human responses, from admiration and wonder to curiosity, lust, even anger and betrayal. The Louvre, complete with photos and historical drawings of the architectural development of the fortress-turned-palace-turned-museum and 300 colorplates of works in the collection, delivers an engaging account of the history that helped form this spectacular collection. Indeed it is the history of the French nation itself, a story of kings and castles, excess and poverty, empires and revolutions, love and war that gave birth to the Louvre, and the subsequent embracing of modernization coupled with a legitimate respect for the past that is the Grand Louvre today.

Dubbed the "museum of the people" in 1848, the Louvre today houses arguably the most comprehensive collection of art and antiquities in the world. Alexandra Bonfante-Warren has chosen some of the most beautiful, awe-inspiring, and thought-provoking examples from each of the museum's seven departments: Egyptian Antiquities, Oriental Antiquities, Greek and Roman Antiquities, Decorative Arts, Sculpture, Paintings, and Drawings. Here are tomb paintings and sarcophagi from the Valley of the Kings, towering mythic sculptures from lost civilizations, devotional altarpieces and architectural embellishments expressing the religious fervor of the Middle Ages, and masterpieces by Giotto, Raphael, Leonardo, Rembrandt, Rubens, Delacroix, David, Vermeer, Ingres, and scores of others.

9 5/8 x 13 in., 320 pages
ISBN: 0-88363-501-1
$75.00 U.S.

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