Art & Architecture

The Nude: A Study in Ideal Form

A landmark study of the nude in art—from the ancient Greeks to Henry Moore—by a towering figure in art history

Paperback

Price:
$45.00/£38.00
ISBN:
Published:
Oct 21, 1972
1956
Pages:
480
Size:
7.5 x 10 in.
Illus:
298 b/w illus.
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In this classic book, Kenneth Clark, one of the most eminent art historians of the twentieth century, examines the ever-changing fashion in what constitutes the ideal nude as a basis of humanist form, from the art of the ancient Greeks to that of Renoir, Matisse, and Henry Moore. The Nude reveals the sensitivity of aesthetic theory to fashion, what distinguishes the naked from the nude, and just why the nude has played such an important role in art history. As Clark writes, “The nude gains its enduring value from the fact that it reconciles several contrary states. It takes the most sensual and immediately interesting object, the human body, and puts it out of reach of time and desire; it takes the most purely rational concept of which man is capable, mathematical order, and makes it a delight to the senses; and it takes the vague fears of the unknown and sweetens them by showing that the gods are like men and may be worshipped for their life-giving beauty rather than their death-dealing powers.”