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The Best Books for Gifting in 2022

Starting with art historian Matthew Wilson’s The Hidden Language of Symbols, some delightful, well-assembled books provide A thoughtful gift choice (Thames & Hudson), an illustrated legend of icons in great works of art through the centuries. The eagle in Johannes Vermeer The Art of Painting almost blends into the chandelier (1666 –1666)? This shows the deep-seated Catholic faith of the Dutch artist. The bull in Picasso Guernica

? Its meaning originates from ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia. These signs are everywhere, use this book as a guide.

Why do we associate Japanese design with minimalism and sparkling neon minimalism at the same time? Vogue Japan editors Mihoko Iida and Danielle Demetriou in Japanese Interiors (Phaidon) have an answer that this island nation It is linked to the natural disasters in China – it is located at the intersection of several tectonic plates, and it is one of the world’s largest consumers. The communal spirit also affects interior design: for example, a bookshelf would not be placed in a multigenerational living area without considering that it might collapse in an earthquake. However dominant a pared-down concrete aesthetic (given the prominence of some star architects) and a limited ethos of property (given the prominence of some masters of organization) may predominate, this book presents a truly astoundingly complete collection .

Artists’ work can reveal theories behind their work or insights into what they eat The Reflections Breakfast – a fascinating mix of high and low. Loving Lucian: The Letters of Lucian Freud , 1920–1954 (Thames & Hudson), edited by David Dawson and Martin Gayford, presents such a delightful combination , provides facsimile letters of the artist for a better appreciation of his scribbles and drawings. Love Lucian is a gorgeously illustrated collage charting the artist’s development, beginning with his childhood and focusing on his early career. He cut his hand in a family accident, meaning the naturally left-handed boy had to start writing with his right hand, but young Floyd’s cursive graceful circles of color are a work of art in themselves.

Is the left-handed perspective a bit subversive? In Ask Judith Thurman in A Left-Handed Woman (Farrar, Straus and Giroux). She notes that this orientation was once considered a “vicious bias,” with schoolchildren often being “switched” to promote more traditional grasping styles. When Thurman was a child, she was warned not to call herself “lefty” lest it set off alarm bells from the McCarthy era. Linguistic precision has always been Thurman’s guiding principle, and here, collected from Rachel Cusk to Marina Abramović to Charlotte Rampling Rampling) and most of the female subjects—not all of them are left-handed, but each has their own inclinations. For those who follow the writing of New Yorker

journalists, this collection is a welcome review; for the inexperienced, it is an intoxicating entry, Linked by a touching introduction, she admits that writing about other people has given her a deeper understanding of herself.

For the holidays, two major new ballet books offer dancers and their fans a choice of entry points: Jennifer Homans’ biography of George Balanchine,gentlemen. B(Random House) and Rupert Christiansen Diaghilev’s Empire: How the Ballets Russes Fascinated the World(Farrah, Shirley Traus and Giroud). Admirers of other onstage events will get lost in this collection of late-life conversations between DT Max and Stephen Sondheim collected in Finale(Harper), or A trip to Dublin via Bono’s new memoir, Surrender (Knopf). Nino Strachey’s Young Bloomsbury: A generation that redefines love, freedom and self-expression in 1920 England ) (Atria) explored different eras of artists, while Hermès “The Nose” Jean-Claude Ellena’s Atlas of Perfume Botany (MIT Press) dissects the natural art.

Browse all this, and more thoughts – including the latest biographies of Shirley Hazzard, Martha Graham and John Singer Sargent ; a photography collection by Steven Klein, Diane Arbus, and Patti Smith; and a memoir by Linda Ronstadt and CJ Hauser — below.

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