Press

The Independent Design Guide

978-0-500-51457-3

“A comprehensive review of innovative emerging design trends.”

— Reference and Research Book News

“Original, unusual, contemporary, deconstructive, and functional. Will inspire creativity and motivate readers to expand their imagination”

— School Arts Magazine

India: A Short History

978-0-500-25199-7

“Materials from the author’s own prolific earlier work on the yet undeciphered Indus valley writing system, on Rabindranath Tagore, and on the life and films of Satyajit Ray add depth to this overview.”

— Choice

“Andrew Robinson tackles this country of incredible depth with a primer that stylishly takes readers from the roots of Indian civilization up through today…India provides travelers with an essential introduction to the land and its people.”

— Virtuoso Life

“In this engrossing read, Robinson examines the broad sweep of Indian-subcontinent history, distilling four millennia into 200 pages. An excellent introduction to the subcontinent’s history.”

— Library Journal

“Pithy, admirable…Robinson is at his best when dealing with India's earlier history. Compressing 4,000 years into 200 pages proves a tall order and leads him to reserve nearly half the book for the BC(E) millennia.  But he here picks his way with assurance and insight.”

— John Keay The Times Literary Supplement

“Robinson aims to navigate the middle passage between polarities, negative and positive, while promoting better understanding of the Indian civilization.”

— Protoview

Indigo: The Color that Changed the World

978-0-500-51660-7

“[Legrand] uses her book to tell the story of our emotional attachment to garments and deep connection to color and craft.”

— Home Design with Kevin Sharkey, marthastewart.com

“Legrand …writes with enthusiasm about the history of this shade and its evolution.”

— Women's Wear Daily

“A sumptuous new book.”

— House Beautiful

“Diverse images of people at work convey the enormous range of conditions in which indigo dyeing takes place.”

— Surface Design Journal

“A visual feast of 550 images offers textile details, proud locals wearing their garments, and process shots illustrating how the dyeing is done.”

— Shuttle, Spindle & Dyepot

“This sumptuous book can be appreciated on all levels: a history of the production and trade of dyes and textiles; an anthropology of textile production; and a stunning visual catalog of the international production of cloth colored with the blue dye, indigotin.”

— The Art Blog

Indoor Green: Living with Plants

978-0-500-50053-8

“This enlivening exploration will inspire even the most timid of indoor plant lovers, providing a fresh look at an affordable type of gardening that both beautifies a home and expands the soul.”

— Publisher's Weekly

An Inner Silence: The Portraits of Henri Cartier-Bresson

978-0-500-28875-7

“The pose reflects nothing so much as motion stilled for a moment—and thereby, once caught on film, for an eternity.”

— The Wall Street Journal

“The master of the ‘decisive moment’ brought the same ability to capture the essence of a situation to his portraiture.”

— Black and White

“Cartier-Bresson set out to unmask mysteries—the mystery of a photograph, of a human being who happened to be his subject that day and, perhaps, even of human connection itself.”

— Photo-Eye

“Highly recommended for all libraries.”

— Library Journal

Introduction to Islam: Beliefs and Practices in Historical Perspective

978-0-500-29158-0

“Since 9/11, there has been a dramatic increase in the number of texts focusing on Islam and Muslims in the contemporary world, but high-quality references (like this one) are always a welcome addition…Recommended for high school students, undergraduate introductory courses on Islam, and general readers interested in the subject … ”

— Library Journal

Inventions That Didn't Change the World

978-0-500-51762-8

“[Julie Halls] does a lovely job investigating the social and cultural back stories that led to the design of an Improved Pickle Fork and a Bona Fide Ventilating Hat, to name just a few, revealing the Victorians to be not just ingenious but wildly insecure about their social status, their bodies and their safety.”

— The New York Times

“Many of the contraptions may seem silly today, such as a current-cleaning machine or a 'portable smelting apparatus' that would allow you to meld metal on the run. Still, notes Ms. Halls, the devices vividly illustrate the era's rising consumer demand and fascination with innovation and practical science.”

— The Wall Street Journal

“A gorgeous compendium of crackpot ideas, reminding us that design is a Darwinian struggle—only the fittest inventions survive.”

— Fast Co.Design

“Shows us that we were always obsessed with technological innovations that promised to make our lives better.”

— Fast Co.Create

“While no single gadget in [this] books changed life as we know it, collectively they shaped an outlook on innovation that exists even today.”

— Smithsonian.com

“Looks at the forgotten side of the Victorian age of invention—not the steam engine or the light bulb but the Improved Sausage Machine, the Epanalepsian Advertizing Vehicle, and the Moustache Protector…And everywhere, there’s the firm belief in social progress through technological innovation.”

— Quartz

“A remarkable collection of design drawings for inventions long forgotten.”

— The Miami Herald

“Covering everything from home and garden to sport and safety, these misfit inventions tell as story that grew curiouser and curiouser. This is the perfect book for your quirky uncle who spends too much time tinkering in the basement.”

— The Washington Post

“Whether or not all the inventions stood the test of time doesn't matter so much; the culture of amateur inventing as a whole can be credited for creating an environment that encouraged tinkering, discovery, and therefore progress.”

— Wired.com

“More than just a fun and beautifully printed collection of odd and curious patents. The author’s knowledgeable commentary gives an interesting  cultural account of the demands for, and uses of, these Victorian-era gadgets…Highly recommended.”

— Choice

“Sometimes an idea isn't as wonderful or useful as its inventor thinks. Halls takes you on an illustrated tour of some of the most unique and unusual inventions registered in Britain in the 19th century.”

— New York Public Library

Islamic Geometric Design

978-0-500-51695-9

“A rich collection.”

— Islamic Horizons

“An exemplary and detailed practitioner account of Islamic pattern design…the lush photographic images are accompanied by visualized formal analysis that gives the patterns conceptual depth…Highly recommended.”

— Choice

“An extremely effective and thorough work on the geometric designs found throughout Islamic art and architecture and the process by which these designs were created…Well written, well-thought-out, and extremely well-illustrated. Enthusiastically recommended.”

— Library Journal

“This visually stunning look conveys the beauty and complexity of Islamic patterns …”

— Saudi Aramco World

“A hybrid of coffee-table, informational, and how-to book.”

— Protoview

“Uniquely comprehensive…Clearly written so that a total understanding of the material is possible for specialist and novice alike.”

— American Journal of Islamic Social Sciences

Italian Renaissance Art

978-0-500-28943-3

“Encourages both instructor and student to think about key themes in Renaissance art as they manifest themselves in different places and, to some extent, different times. Given the right pedagogical fit, this approach could be very useful to both students and instructors.”

— caa.reviews (College Art Association)

Jackson Pollock's Mural: Energy Made Visible

978-0-500-23934-6

“Vividly bound in neon green. ”

— Vogue

“This passionately argued text by Anfam delves into the personal, cultural, and artistic forces that helped shape Pollock's largest and, according to the author, most influential painting. Richly analytical, and with 106 illustrations including pages from Pollock's sketchbooks, the text draws compelling connections between Pollock's work and the paintings of J.M.W. Turner, the writings of Charles Olson, and the biological examinations of human form by D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson. This insightful study is a welcome analysis of a single work by Pollock.”

— Publisher's Weekly

“Excellent. ”

— Artinfo

“This handsomely produced book, by one of the most sensitive writers on the New York School of painting, should be on every shelf…Anfam ranges widely throughout Pollock’s career, indicating sources within the critical, artistic, social, and political spheres that were deeply influential to Pollock’s art from his earliest paintings until his death. There are a number of new finds …that significantly expand the Pollock scholarship and provide new insights into the form of the painter’s work and its resonance within its contemporary culture. Compellingly written.”

— Choice

“Although a new tranche of recent and forthcoming scholarship is rewriting the story of Mural, David Anfam's vibrant catalogue will almost certainly remain the most assured and sympathetic guide to the painting from conception to legacy. Few interpreters of Abstract Expressionism have Anfam's breadth of cultural knowledge, even fewer his intellectual independence. He avoids theoretical muddle and dead ends. Anfam's prose is as energetic as the painting it elucidates, but both reward close and calm attention.”

— The Art Newspaper UK

Japanese Art

978-0-500-20425-2

“Covers the prehistoric period through Japan today and seeks to capture the essence of Japanese culture, which embraces balance, harmony, humor, and human imperfection. [Stanley-Baker] aims to communicate the sense of union between the art and the artist, as well as the ability of Japanese art and culture to absorb the ideas and influences of other cultures into its own.”

— Protoview

Japonisme and the Rise of the Modern Art Movement: The Arts of the Meiji Period

978-0-500-23913-1

“Lavish.”

— The Minneapolis Star Tribune

“These beautiful objects certainly reflect the process by which Western artists derived inspiration from the material culture of Japan.”

— Art Eyewitness

“Accessible to general readers who will be drawn by the attractive book design and abundant photographs of the best examples of Meiji craft arts.”

— ProtoView

“An extremely thorough study of the influences of Japanese art from the Meiji period…Highly recommended.”

— Choice

Jean Despres: Jeweler, Maker, and Designer of the Machine Age

978-0-500-51478-8

“The 234 high-quality color illustrations are interspersed with another 100 black-and-white images of Després in his studio and some of the original images from catalogs and exhibitions… This will be appealing to artists and collectors equally for the visual material, while the text will be valuable for historians of art and design.”

— Library Journal

“Lavishly illustrated…. Boasts a number of original photographs”

— France

“Anyone with an interest in jewelry history will appreciate this book.”

— The Jewelry Appraise

Jeff Koons: Conversations with Norman Rosenthal

978-0-500-09382-5

“Provides a revealing portrait of Koons’ singular personality and artistic vision as he discusses works across his 35-year career.”

— Antiques and the Arts Weekly

“Here is a chance to learn what the artist himself thinks he is up to. More casual readers will enjoy browsing through both the conversations and the images, getting to know the thoughts of a favorite contemporary artist in his own words that are easy to dip into or to consider more seriously.”

— Library Journal

“Much has been and will be written about Koons, but there's nothing like the artist's own words…to inform our perspective on his work…Clever, slick, and mesmerizing.”

— Booklist

“The most revealing portrait yet of Koons's singular personality and artistic vision.”

— Examiner.com

Jerry Dantzic: Billie Holiday at Sugar Hill: With a reflection by Zadie Smith

978-0-500-54465-5

“This coffee table book features 100 photos and beautifully captures Holiday on a cigarette-hazed bandstand, wearing a bare-shouldered, sequined dress, performing songs such as ‘Fine and Mellow,’ ‘Don’t Explain,’ and ‘Strange Fruit.’ Taken one year after the publication of her autobiography, Lady Sings the Blues, and two years before her untimely death at age 44, the photos reveal a deeply personal and vibrant side of Holiday. Also included are…extensive technical photography notes by Jerry Dantzic’s son, Grayson, who is a photo archivist [and] a moving essay by novelist Smith.”

— Publishers Weekly

Billie Holiday at Sugar Hill adds a quiet new dimension to the story we thought we knew about Holiday. With Jerry Dantzic, she revealed homier sides of her life which needed no explanations and invited no judgments: at home with her husband or her dog, or visiting her co-author and her godchild. In these images and in Mr. Dantzic's performance shots, she is not the tragic torch singer of myth but a middle-aged woman finding simple comforts from the maelstrom, no longer as sharp in her voice but undiminished in her ability to command a stage.”

— New York Times' Lens

“Dantzic’s high-contrast, black-and-white images of the singer on stage are powerful and iconic and reveal an artist truly in her element. Zadie Smith opens this collection with a reflection inspired by the photographs, an evocative stream-of-consciousness prose poem that suggests the mindset of Lady Day.”

— Booklist

“A sleek coffee table book of photographs, many never seen before, [that] is a reminder that between the fame and the infamy, normal life happens. It’s the everyday nature of these black-and-white photographs that makes them so unusual. [Billie] Holiday is pictured walking into the club before a performance; putting on her makeup in front of a dressing room mirror; being licked on the cheek by her Chihuahua; holding her blond-haired godson in her arms; or leaning over a pan in her friend’s kitchen. British novelist Zadie Smith, who sang jazz before she began publishing fiction, provides a curious introduction to the book: a short story written from Holiday’s point of view.”

— The Washington Post

“Recommended for photography enthusiasts, fans of Holiday, and jazz history buffs. Dantzic's intimate portraits honor this period in Holiday' life, just two years before her untimely death at age 44. Often shooting indoors and with a slow shutter, he captures a good deal of motion blur that give the images a gritty look and feel. When Holiday is performing, Dantzic frequently shoots from a low vantage point to emphasize her larger-than-life stature. Dantzic also provides a rare view into the everyday life of this mythic performer, which includes playing with her Chihuahua Pepi, walking in New York City, interacting with friends, and cooking in her West 68th Street apartment.”

— Library Journal

“[A] remarkable set of images of one of America's greatest artists. If you're a Holiday fan, it will be hard to resist seeking out this book that so candidly captures her late in her life and career. The images are intimate but not prurient. Too often fans want to see the flaws, the scars and wear-and-tear of a well-documented difficult life, as if those struggles alone defined Holiday. The book shows us much more. Likely influenced by Dantzic's relationship with William Dufty (her friend and the co-author of her autobiography, Lady Sings the Blues), Holiday gave the photographer nearly unprecedented access.”

— Jazz Times