Art & Architecture

Painting and Reality

A classic study of the art of painting and its relationship to reality


30% off with code PUP30

Sale Price:
Oct 17, 2023
116 b/w illus.
Buy This

In this book, Étienne Gilson puts forward a bold interpretation of the kind of reality depicted in paintings and its relation to the natural order. Drawing on insights from the writings of great painters—from Leonardo, Reynolds, and Constable to Mondrian and Klee—Gilson shows how painting is foreign to the order of language and knowledge. Painting, he argues, seeks to add new beings to nature, not to represent those that already exist. For this reason, we must distinguish it from another art, that of picturing, which seeks to produce images of actual or possible beings. Though pictures play an important part in human life, they do not belong in the art of painting. Through this distinction, Gilson sheds new light on the evolution of modern painting. A magisterial work of scholarship by an acclaimed historian of philosophy, Painting and Reality features paintings from both classical and modern schools, and includes extended selections from the writings of Reynolds, Delacroix, Gris, Gill, and Ozenfant.