Since its first appearance in 1931 Herbert Read's introduction to the understanding of art has established itself as a classic of its kind. It provides a basis for the appreciation of paintings, sculpture and art-objects of all periods by defining the elements that went into their making.
A compact survey of the world's art, from primitive cave-drawings to Jackson Pollock, The Meaning of Art explains the persistence of certain principles and aspirations throughout the history of art, and summarizes the essence of such movements as Gothic, Baroque, Impressionism, Expressionism and Surrealism.
This new Faber Modern Classics edition features a brand new foreword by Will Gompertz, BBC arts editor.
Sir Herbert Read (1893-1968) was a poet, and a literary and art critic. From 1922 to 1931 he was a curator at the Victoria and Albert Museum. In 1931, when his influential primer The Meaning of Art was first published, he became professor in fine art at the University of Edinburgh, before taking on the editorship of the Burlington Magazine. An influential figure in the art world, he was one of the organisers of the 1936 London International Surrealist Exhibition and co-founded the Institute of Contemporary Art in 1947.