Modern Art Explorer by Alice Harman & Serge Bloch

Reviewed by Melissa Beck (Library Staff)

Let’s be honest. Modern art can be a little…difficult to understand. Like, we know it means SOMETHING but sometimes we lack the tools to even begin to make sense of it. That’s where this book comes in.

Each spread presents one work of art that was created roughly between the 1860s and the late 1960s, although a few more contemporary pieces are sprinkled in as well. Alice Harman does a wonderful job addressing each piece–first acknowledging what you may be thinking at first glance and then giving you a bit of insight into the artist’s history, method, and inspiration, all while maintaining a supremely conversational and entertaining tone. The text is supplemented by whimsical line drawings by Serge Bloch, which draw from the style of the artist being presented and increase the appeal of each page.

Modern Art Explorer takes an overwhelming subject and opens the door, welcoming you in so that you both want to walk around inside and feel like you belong. A huge task done well.

Available through the Bridges Library System

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