The Yale Dictionary of Art and Artists is a superb reference work dealing with all aspects of Western art from 1300 to the present day. It provides information on painters, sculptors, and graphic artists, technical processes, terminology, theory, schools, movements, patrons and collecting, and much more. There are also extended conceptual entries ranging over such subjects as abstraction, allegory, genres, iconography, illusionism, minimalism, realism, and symbolism.
Written by Erika Langmuir and Norbert Lynton, the 3,000 entries are unusually readable and lucid, providing vivid characterizations of artistic styles and artists. Entries vary between short and encyclopedic; major artists and artists whose careers or talents have recently been reassessed or who seem to merit reassessment are given a fuller treatment. There is extensive cross-referencing between entries.
Erika Langmuir is a former head of education at the National Gallery, London. Norbert Lynton, professor emeritus of the University of Sussex and former director of exhibitions for the Arts Council of Great Britain, has written widely on twentieth-century art.