$17 The Spiritual Dimensions of Music: Altering Consciousness for Inner Development by R. J. Stewart
This handbook of musical alchemy emphasizes the role of music in raising consciousness to benefit body and mind.
$19 Modern Sculpture: A Concise History by Herbert Read
Sir Herbert Read traces the development of modern sculpture from Rodin to the present day and brings order into the apparently chaotic proliferation of styles and techniques during this period.
$19 Chinese Brushwork in Calligraphy and Painting: Its History, Aesthetics, and Techniques by Kwo Da-wei
Master artist, teacher and scholar traces historical development of techniques and styles from 14th century BC to present; analyzes aesthetic concepts, criteria, and schools associated with specific aesthetic qualities; and provides comprehensive, in-depth guide to materials, technical principles, and major brush strokes.
$25 Jazz Greats by David Perry
Do “jazz greats” belong with the likes of Bartók and Puccini? The editors of Phaidon’s 20th-Century Composers series think so. This readable volume surveys the careers of a dozen influential figures in the development of jazz, from Buddy Bolden and Sidney Bechet to Wynton Marsalis and Keith Jarrett. Author David Perry avoids an overly analytical approach to a largely improvisational art, while still marking the ebb and flow of jazz style over the decades. When it comes to the lives of his “greats,” he is steadfastly honest in recounting their failings (personal and musical) without judgment.
$25 Since Cézanne by Clive Bell
An erudite, personal take. Not as influential as Clement Greenberg’s writing on Cezanne, but a unique, compelling book.
$25 Poetics of Music: In the Form of Six Lessons by Igor Stravinsky
The Poetics of Music is like a searchlight turned by Stravinsky on his own work on one hand, and on music in general on the other. Every new work by this great composer is laden with far reaching significance. Each one possesses its own structure, its own tonal equilibrium, even its own moral climate. And the painstaking honesty the craf tsmanly exactitude of each work raises it to the heights of abstract thought and at the same time to that austerity, economy of means, and essential au thenticity which characterize the true laying bare of a soul. Igor Stravinskys book invites us to follow him into the secret world that is the counterpart to the world of soul.
$26 Chinese Calligraphy: An Introduction to Its Aesthetic and Technique by Yee Chiang
A splendid book in which the plates alone would make a valuable acquisition…Mr. Chiang is the confident master, writing in a manner that is both businesslike and imaginative.
$33 Music in a New Found Land: Themes and Developments in the History of American Music by Wilfred Mellers
Music in a New Found Land does not pretend to be a comprehensive history of American music. Mellers deals, in some detail, with comparatively few composers, most of whom have well-established reputations. It has always been difficult to separate American music from its immediate relevance to the twentieth century. Mellers theme involves the relationship between “art” music, jazz and pop music; he sees the segregation of these genres as both illogical and artificial. In sum, this is the closest available one-volume history of American music, and a window into American culture.
$35 Neuroarthistory: From Aristotle and Pliny to Baxandall and Zeki by John Onians
This provocative book offers a fascinating account of neuroarthistory, one of the newest and most exciting fields in the human sciences. Exploring the writings of major thinkers (among them Montesquieu, Burke, Kant, Marx and Freud), and leading art historians (including Pliny, Winckelmann, Ruskin, Pater, Gombrich and Baxandall), as well as artists such as Alberti and Leonardo and scientists from Aristotle to Zeki, John Onians shows how an understanding of the neural basis of the mind contributes to an understanding of all human behaviors—including art.