A Closer Look: Colour

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Special Offer: Buy any 2 books from the "A Closer Look" series for only £12.


David Bomford is Former Associate Director for Collections at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles. Ashok Roy is Director of Scientific Research at the National Gallery, London. Both authors have contributed to many National Gallery publications, including The National Gallery Technical Bulletin and the exhibition series Art in the Making (1989–2006).

Colour is so fundamental a part of paintings that we tend to take it for granted. We rarely think about the materials that make up colour, and how artists manipulate these. A Closer Look: Colour explores how painters apply colour, describes different types of pigments, and outlines major optical theories and artists’ treatises. The authors explain the effect on colour of the painter’s chosen medium, such as oil, water, or egg tempera, and the dramatic impact of new pigments. All are vividly illustrated by detailed studies of paintings from the National Gallery Collection, from van Eyck to Seurat.

A Closer Look: Colour was first published as Colour: National Gallery Pocket Guides in 2000. It has been redesigned and updated with new material and photography.

View spreads of this book (2 MB PDF)


‘A fascinating look at colour in paintings’
Karen Platt, KarenPlatt.co.uk, October 2009

‘Readers will enjoy their visit to…all subsequent art galleries all the more for knowing a little about how the results they now admire were produced’
Alan Williams, The Art Book, May 2010

Product Information

Product Code 1018540
ISBN 9781857094428
author David Bomford, Ashok Roy
colour illustrations 90
format Paperback
pages 96
published Sep 2009
publisher National Gallery Company
Dimensions 210 X 148 mm

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