Victorian Painting Art Book Review

Posted By yonghow on March 1st, 2013

Victorian Painting by Phaidon books is a comprehensive and exhaustive study on the wide gamut of art work created over the span of the Victorian Era, covering a multitude of subject matter and movements, from Romantic Realism to Symbolism and more.

I love the book for its expansive content, well over 500 pages of big and beautifully reproduced paintings. It certainly helps that the art work created over this period include some of my favourite movements and art groups – Romanticism, Realism, Symbolism and groups like the Pre-Raphaelites.

The size ( 9.8 x 1.7 inches ) of the book is big enough such that no single painting is spread across two pages, preserving the integrity and allowing the reader to fully immerse in each piece of art work.

(above right) John Singer Sargent’s “Carnation, Lily, Lily, Rose”, which I saw during my trip to Tate Britain in 2011. The lanterns seem to illuminate light from behind the canvas.

(above right) A Mermaid by JW Waterhouse. His Lady Of Shalott is my favourite painting of all times.

I browse this book from time to time when I need inspiration, and it gives me the kick I need every time. The images shown in this post are but a very small sampling of the amazing art work you can find inside. I give this book my highest recommendations.

p.s – the version I reviewed is the soft cover. If you have the cash to spare I suggest getting the hard cover version – the spine binding is much more robust, which is important to preserve such a heavy book and browsing is much easier as you can open up the book much wider.

“Victorian Painting” art book details :

Dimensions – 9.8 x 1.7 x 11.4 inches
Soft cover, 512 pages
Color, in English

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3 Responses to “Victorian Painting Art Book Review”


Is Victorian Art your only interest or are there other arts from different decades/cultures that you’re acquainted with?

I’ve always thought the Renaissance paintings are kind of stoic and these paintings so sensible & beautiful!! I love them XD


Star – Back in school the art history lessons took me from Neo-Classicism all the way to Modern Pop art, but my favourite movements is still Romanticism, which overlaps Victorian Art period. I adore work by the Pre-Raphaelites and JW Waterhouse of course.

I love Renaissance paintings too though, on my recent trip to Italy artists like Guido Reni really blew my mind too.


yonghow – …That’s a lot to list. (^_^);;; I wish I should have paid more attention to my art history class lol

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