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Why is something a masterpiece? Art History 101 . . . Without the Exams is about revisiting famous works of art that we may have studied in an art history class or seen in a textbook. Each discussion delves into one great masterpiece and asks the questions that help us understand how it has shaped history. What is the piece about? How did the original owner look at this piece? Where was it originally placed? Why is it in this museum now? How did it get famous? From the sixth-century mosaics of Ravenna and the painted bulls of Altamira, Spain, dated 12,500 BCE, to an incense burner from twelfth-century Seljuk Iran, frescoes from a Late Byzantine funerary chapel, and masterworks by Botticelli, Caravaggio, Monet, and Sargent, this book shows readers how to look closely. It welcomes us to the joy of art history--but without the papers, notes, and exams.
About the Author
Annie Montgomery Labatt is Associate Professor of Visual Studies and Director of Galleries and Museums at Sweet Briar College in Virginia. She graduated with High Honors from Barnard College of Columbia University in 2002, and received her PhD from Yale University in 2011. While a graduate student, she won a two-year Rome Prize at the American Academy of Rome, and was also a fellow at Harvard University's Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection. She has worked at the Metropolitan Museum of Art on two major exhibitions, once as a research assistant and once as a Chester Dale Fellow. Laboratory of Images: Emerging Iconographies in 8th- and 9th- Century Rome, her study of the development of Christian imageries, is forthcoming.