The Art of Colour: The History of Art in 39 Pigments
A unique approach to the history of art told through the story of colour and pigments.
Did you know that the ultramarine that shimmers at the centre of Vermeer’s Milkmaid connects that masterpiece with 6th-century Zoroastrian paintings found on the walls of cave temples in Bamiyan, Afghanistan? Or that the surging waves that crest and curl in Hokusai’s perilous Great Wave off Kanagawa owe their absorbing blue lustre to an alchemist who was born in Frankenstein’s Castle in 1673? And were the Pre-Raphaelites really obsessed with a murky brown hue derived from the pulverized remains of ancient mummies? (Spoiler: they were.)
Invented by prehistoric cave-dwellers and medieval conjurers, cunning conmen and savvy scientists, the colours of art tell a riveting tale all their own. Over ten scintillating chapters, acclaimed author Kelly Grovier helps bring that tale vividly to life, revealing the astonishing backstories of the pigments that define the greatest works in the history of art. Interwoven between these chapters is a series of features focusing on key moments in the evolution of colour theory – from the revelations of the Enlightenment to the radicalism of the Bauhaus – while reproductions of carefully selected artworks help illuminate the narrative’s twists and turns.
The history of colour is an epic saga of human ingenuity and insatiable desire. Read this book and you will never look at a work of art in quite the same way.
- 256 pages
FREE UK Delivery for orders over £50
Our current holiday season UK standard processing
and fulfillment time is 5-7 working days from the time you placed your order, excluding Custom Prints, online-only telescopes and personalised clothing.
All UK orders (excluding personalised clothing) are sent using a tracked service.
Custom Prints (those which are customised by choosing a size and frame) and personalised clothing take a little longer to fulfill due to being made to order.
Please see our Delivery & Returns page for more information and last order dates.
Online-only telescopes are shipped directly from Celestron. Please place your order before 12 noon on 18th December.
FREE Standard UK delivery for all orders over £50 (Royal Mail)
For all other orders, we offer Standard UK delivery for £4.95 per order (Royal Mail).
We also offer UK FedEx 1-3 Working Days for £9.90. Excludes Custom Prints and Personalised Clothing. Please place your order by 19th December.
International Delivery Information
Delivery rate varies by country and value of order, and starts from as little as £6.95.
Please allow 5-7 working days for standard orders to be dispatched.
Custom Prints (those which are customised by choosing a size and frame) and personalised clothing take a little longer to fulfill due to being made to order. Please see our recommended last order dates for these items on our Delivery & Returns page.
We send using a Royal Mail/FedEx tracked delivery service (excluding personalised products). Please allow 7-10 working days to receive after we have dispatched.
Please see our Delivery & Returns page for all information.
For all returns, please contact us as soon as possible using the contact form, expressing your wish to return. Please wait for confirmation from one of our team before returning.
Custom Prints (those which are customised by choosing a size and frame) and personalised clothing are made to order and therefore we are unable to offer a refund or exchange, unless they are faulty.
Please see our Delivery & Returns page for full information.
Every purchase supports the work of Royal Museums Greenwich
All proceeds from all purchases made on the Royal Museums Greenwich online shop support the work of the museum.
Should you wish to, you can now add a voluntary donation to your order. All donations, big or small, will make a difference.
Thank you for your continued support.