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When it comes to viewing art, living in the information age is not necessarily a benefit. So argues Michael Findlay in this book that encourages a new way of looking at art. Much of this thinking involves stripping away what we have been taught and instead trusting our own instincts, opinions, and reactions. Including reproductions of works by Mark Rothko, Paul Klee, Joan Miró, Jacob Lawrence, and other modern and contemporary masters, this book takes readers on a journey through modern art. Chapters such as “What Is a Work of Art?”, “Can We Look and See at the Same Time?”, and “Real Connoisseurs Are Not Snobs,” not only give readers the confidence to form their own opinions, but also encourages them to make connections that spark curiosity, intellect, and imagination. “The most important thing for us to grasp,” writes Findlay, “is that the essence of a great work of art is inert until it is seen. Our engagement with the work of art liberates its essence.” After reading this book, even the most intimidated art viewer will enter a museum or gallery feeling more confident and leave it feeling enriched and inspired.
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One of the earliest dealers in SoHo, Michael Findlay showcased artists including John Baldessari, Joseph Beuys, and Hannah Wilke. Named Head of Impressionist and Modern Paintings at Christie's in 1984, he later became its International Director of Fine Arts. Since 2000 he has been a director at Acquavella Galleries, New York, which in recent years has held major exhibitions of important Impressionist, modern, and contemporary masters.