Non-Fiction Book Reviews

Book Review: Baroque: Theatrum Mundi. The World as a Work of Art

By Sandy Amazeen Nov 20, 2012, 7:10 GMT

Book Review: Baroque: Theatrum Mundi. The World as a Work of Art

"After the global hit Ars Sacra, Rolf Toman and histeam embark on a journey once more. The Palace ofVersailles and St. Peter\'s Basilica in the Vatican arethe outstanding buildings from this epoch. There areundreamed-of jewels in Europe and America, the NewWorld, waiting for discovery. Magnificent libraries,vaults of science or mysterious gardens, skilled worksof porcelain and illusionistic painting, to name just afew aspects of this complex epoch.With his passion and meticulousness, ...more

This magnificent companion volume to Gothic exhibits the same precise, lovingly reproduced photography of Achim Bednorz along with the knowledgeable text by art historian Barbara Borngasser. Long discounted, the Baroque period extended over the two hundred fifty years between the Counter-Reformation and the French Revolution at a time when the Catholic Church was widening their powerbase over the known world and the world itself was seen as an exquisite piece of artwork, indeed a stage.

From the stunning ceiling frescos of S. Ignazio and Gran Salone to the massive Dome des Invalides and the amazing pulpit altar housed within Germany’s St. Pankratius, it is clear the church was a vital driving force behind the art movement. Cutting edge digital photographic technology has allowed Bednorz to bring to the printed page a sense of the grandeur of these works as never before. Fountains, furniture, paintings, sculptures and indeed entire city blocks are presented in all their glory in this sixteen pound, five hundred sixty eight page book that is certain to provide many happy hours of browsing. Whether you are an art student or historian, an armchair traveler or just have an appreciation for the arts, this hand bound treasure demonstrates publisher H.F. Ullmann’s prowess in the art world.

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