Caravaggio by Andrew Graham-Dixon
A Life Sacred and Profane

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Synopsis

“This book resees its subject with rare clarity and power as a painter for the 21st century.”—Hilary Spurling, New York Times Book Review


In a bravura performance, Andrew Graham-Dixon explores Caravaggio’s staggering artistic achievements, delving into the original Italian sources to create a masterful profile of the mercurial painter. This New York Times and Washington Post Notable Book of the Year features more than eighty full-color reproductions of the artist’s best paintings.
 

About Andrew Graham-Dixon

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Andrew Graham-Dixon has presented six landmark series on art for the BBC, including the acclaimed A History of British Art, Renaissance and Art of Eternity, as well as numerous individual documentaries on art and artists. For more than twenty years he has published a weekly column on art, first in the Independent and, more recently, in the Sunday Telegraph. He has written a number of acclaimed books, on subjects ranging from medieval painting and sculpture to the art of the present, including Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and Profane, Art: The Definitive Visual Guide, and Michelangelo and the Sistine Chapel.
 
Published November 10, 2011 by W. W. Norton & Company. 585 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Arts & Photography, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Caravaggio

Kirkus Reviews

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His virtuosity, mastery of chiaroscuro and ability to make the sacred profane established him as the ideal for painters as varied as Rubens, Velasquez, David and even Picasso, who invoked his use of realism as he painted Guernica.

Jul 01 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The New York Times

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“Whatever he set out to paint,” Andrew Graham-Dixon writes in his gripping biography, “he always ended up painting himself.” Enlarge This Image Hulton Archive/Getty Images Caravaggio Just over a decade earlier Caravaggio had painted Me...

Sep 30 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Guardian

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Bits of Caravaggio – a leg bone whose fractured sections had to be taped together, a slice of jaw, a smooth, hollow skull – were grubbed from an unmarked grave on the Tuscan coast a fortnight ago.

Jun 27 2010 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Guardian

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the responses to the two last Neapolitan paintings – revealed when on loan to the National Gallery to be perhaps the most harrowingly personal of all Caravaggio's works – are similarly effective (though marred by the odd insistence that they are primarily of interest because they show that Carava...

Jul 24 2010 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Wall Street Journal

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For Caravaggio's latest biographer, the British art critic and television presenter Andrew Graham-Dixon, the style is the man: "Caravaggio's life is like his art, a series of lightning flashes in the darkest of nights.

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The Wall Street Journal

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Caravaggio was the greatest pictorial dramatist of his age—and is the most popular of ours.

Sep 10 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Washington Times

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In Mr. Robb’s portrait - “M: The Man Who Became Caravaggio” (1998) - the painter is violent, ambitious, primarily homosexual and dissolute.

Dec 23 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Washington Post

When he recovered enough to travel, he cut a deal for a pardon — more paintings, this time for a cardinal — and was returning to Rome when he died suddenly en route.

Sep 07 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Independent

We live in an age which – unlike Caravaggio's – requires transgression of its artists.

Jul 09 2010 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Telegraph

Above all, though, this fine Life – elegantly written, impressively intuitive – is a convincing examination of how great art can grow from the flintiest soil.

Jul 11 2010 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

The Telegraph

Of all the great European artists of the past, there is probably none who more obviously appeals to a modern sensibility than Caravaggio.

Jun 25 2010 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

Dallas News

Almost any story about Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio begins with a mention of his thuggish life along with references to his dramatic painting style.

Nov 11 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

Washington Independent Review of Books

These displays were often intentionally shocking — the floor of one chapel appeared to have dismembered babies strewn across it — but such religious showcases were unavoidable in Caravaggio’s formative years, which goes a long way toward explaining how the almost defiantly non-religious Caravaggi...

Oct 04 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

Open Letters Monthly

And the story of what kind of bastard he was – the street-brawls, the prostitutes of both genders, the arrests, the flights from the law, the hair-trigger temper and omnipresent brutality – has been told in great detail a great many times – a redundancy fully matching the irrelevance.

Oct 09 2011 | Read Full Review of Caravaggio: A Life Sacred and...

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