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This fascinating new book explores the world of portraiture from a number of vantage points, and asks key questions about its nature. How has portraiture changed over the centuries? How have portraits represented their subjects, and how have they been interpreted? Issues of identity, modernity, and gender are considered within a cultural and historical context. Shearer West uncovers much intriguing detail about a genre that has often been seen as purely representational, featuring examples from African tribes to Renaissance princes, and from 'stars' such as David and Victoria Beckham to ordinary people. In the process, she shows us how to communicate with the past in an exciting new way.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 256 pages
  • 168 x 236 x 16mm | 621.42g
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • numerous colour and halftone illustrations
  • 0192842587
  • 9780192842589
  • 108,189

Table of contents

Introduction ; 1. What is a Portrait? ; 2. Functions of Portraiture ; 3. Power and Status ; 4. Group Portraiture ; 5. The Stages of Life ; 6. Gender and Portraiture ; 7. Self-Portraiture ; 8. Portraiture and Modernism ; 9. Identities ; Notes ; Annotated Bibliography ; Index ; Museums and Websites
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Review quote

a fascinating book...gorgeous examples * Independent *
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About Shearer West

Shearer West is Professor of Art History at the University of Birmingham. Her books include Chagall (Bison, 1990), The Image of the Actor: Verbal and Visual Representation in the Age of Garrick and Kemble (Pinter, 1991), The Visual Arts in Germany 1890-1940 (Manchester UP, 2000), and Fin de Sie'cle: Art and Society in an Age of Uncertainty (Overlook, 1993). She is also the editor of The Bloomsbury Guide to Art (Bloomsbury,
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Rating details

70 ratings
3.88 out of 5 stars
5 31% (22)
4 30% (21)
3 36% (25)
2 1% (1)
1 1% (1)
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