Caravaggio and the Creation of Modernity

Troy Thomas

Caravaggio and the Creation of Modernity

Troy Thomas

Distributed for Reaktion Books

256 pages | 60 color plates, 10 halftones | 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 | © 2016
Cloth $22.50 ISBN: 9781780236766 Published October 2016 For sale in North and South America only
Undeniably one of the greatest artists of all time, Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio would develop a radically new kind of psychologically expressive, realistic art and, in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, would lay the foundations for modern painting. His paintings defied tradition to such a degree that the meaning of his works have divided critics and viewers for centuries. In this original study, Troy Thomas examines Caravaggio’s life and art in relationship to the profound beginnings of modernity, exploring the many conventions that Caravaggio utterly dismantled with his extraordinary genius.
            Thomas begins with an in-depth look at Caravaggio’s early life and works and examines how he refined his realism, developed his obsession with darkness and light, and began to find the subtle and clever ambiguity of genre and meaning that would become his trademark. Focusing acutely on the inherent tensions, contradictions, and ambiguities within Caravaggio’s paintings, Thomas goes on to examine his mature religious works and the ways he created a powerful but stark and enigmatic expressiveness in his protagonists. Lastly, he delves into the artist’s final hectic years as a fugitive killer evading papal police and wandering the cities of southern Italy.
            Richly illustrated in color throughout, Caravaggio and the Creation of Modernity will appeal to all of those fascinated by the history of art and the remarkable lives of Renaissance masters.
 
Review Quotes
Babette Bohn, Texas Christian University
“Thomas’s excellent new book provides an accessible but sophisticated examination of Caravaggio as an artist, focusing in particular on his mature Roman paintings. Building on previous scholarship and also offering some intriguing new interpretations of Caravaggio’s remarkable pictures, Thomas argues that the ambiguity of the artist’s approach to his subjects, along with his novel realism, psychological penetration, and dynamic immediacy, make Caravaggio a truly modern artist. Filled with interesting observations about Caravaggio’s pictures, this book examines Caravaggio’s uncomfortably human questioning of faith in his religious pictures, while situating the artist in the context of his time and arguing for the unprecedented modernity of his creations.”
PopMatters
“This book is carefully designed as a forceful and concise statement on the artist’s innovations. . . . There’s much more to say about this excellent book and Thomas offers daring interpretations on almost every page. . . . Moments such as these underline both Thomas’s skill as a historian and Caravaggio’s towering genius."
For more information, or to order this book, please visit http://www.press.uchicago.edu
Google preview here

Chicago Manual of Style |

RSS Feed

RSS feed of the latest books from Reaktion Books. RSS Feed