Art: The Whole Story

Stephen Farthing, Richard Cork

The most accessible history of world art ever assembled.

Written by an international team of artists, art historians, and curators, this absorbing and beautiful book gives readers unparalleled insights into the world’s most iconic artworks. Art: The Whole Story traces the development of art period by period, with the informative and highly illustrated text covering every genre, from painting and sculpture to conceptual art and performance art. Cultural timelines are included as well, in order to help readers with each movement’s historical context.

Masterpieces that epitomize each period or movement are highlighted and analyzed in detail. Everything from use of color and visual metaphors to technical innovations are explained, giving readers the tools to interpret the meanings of world-famous masterpieces. Highlights include Mughal miniatures; Japanese prints from the nineteenth century; the color theories behind Seurat’s remarkable La Grande Jatte; and why Picasso’s Les Demoiselles d’Avignon was so shocking in its day.


Stephen Farthing

General Editor

Stephen Farthing is the Rootstein Hopkins research professor in drawing at the University of the Arts, London.

Richard Cork

Foreword By

Richard Cork is an award-winning art critic, historian, broadcaster, and curator. He has acted as a judge for the Turner Prize and curated major exhibitions at Tate, the Hayward Gallery, the Barbican Art Gallery, the Royal Academy of Arts, and other European venues. Previously art critic for the Evening Standard, then chief art critic of The Times, he broadcasts regularly on BBC radio and TV and has written several books.