Art evolves and revolutionises itself through these simple - but ground-breaking - creative leaps. Art Firsts brings together 30 of these pioneering firsts to piece together an original approach to looking at and appreciating art, as well as understanding where it has come from and how it relates to you. Each first is approachable and engaging, while each work is simply and satisfyingly explained. Every work is also fully illustrated, and its significance is shown through images of the subsequent artists directly inspired by them. Art Firsts offers a refreshing and fascinating narrative for those curious about why so-called 'masterpieces' are so important and how the story of art can be boiled down to flashes of fascinating brilliance. When was art's first kiss? Who painted the first ever smile and the first self-portrait? Who made the first known depiction of a gay embrace, when did Western art first depict a Black subject or approach feminism? And why were each of these firsts so important? This book answers all these fascinating questions and more.
A new, simple way of looking at, appreciating and understanding where art has come from.
Each 'first' is deliberately related to our everyday - instead of the traditional art-historical milestones - and is succinctly and entertainingly explained
Includes famous and iconic works alongside unknown gems from around the world
A simple and satisfying escorted tour through art's history for the curious
Nick Trend is a journalist and art historian. As Chief Culture Editor for the travel desk of the Daily Telegraph, he has spent nearly three decades writing about the world's art treasures and has produced guides to many of the greatest museums and art collections. He has also worked on the curatorial staff at the National Gallery in London and has a degree in English Literature from Cambridge and a PhD in Art History from the University of East Anglia.