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Color: A Natural History of the Palette

A Natural History of the Palette

By Victoria Finlay

Format: Paperback

You’ll Love This Book on Color If:

  • You love learning about the meaning behind colors
  • You want to incorporate meaningful colors into your next piece
  • You love to explore history, the history of art & the history of color
Each chapter of Color: A Natural History of the Palette delves deep into a specific color, giving you the full story on the history behind White, Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet, Ochre, Black and Brown. Reveal the meaning & usage of colors throughout history in this comprehensive color reference book.

Did you know Cleopatra used saffron—a source of the color yellow—for seduction? That when extracted from an Afghan mine, the blue “ultramarine” paint used by Michelangelo was so expensive he couldn’t afford to buy it himself? Or that since ancient times, carmine red—still found in lipsticks and Cherry Coke today—has come from the blood of insects? Discover the vibrant & exciting world of color with author & color history expert Victoria Finlay. Learn about where they came from, how they were developed, how they were used over time and the significance they held and still hold today to people around the world.

In this Color History Book You’ll Learn:

  • How and where colors & dyes were developed
  • The importance of color throughout history to cultures & important figures
  • Why we see the colors we see & why we love the colors we love!

Check out this Excerpt From Chapter 1 of Color: A Natural History of the Palette Featuring Ochre

Ochre-iron oxide- was the first color paint. It has been used on every inhabited continent since painting began, and it has been around every since, on the palettes of almost every artist in history. In classical time the best of it came from the Black Sea city of Sinope, in the area that is now Turkey, and was so valuable that the paint was stamped with a special seal and was known as “sealed Sinope”: later the words “sinopia” or “sinoper” became general terms for red ochre. The first white settlers in North America called the indigenous people “Red Indians” because of the way they painted themselves with ochre (as a shield against evil, symbolizing the good elements of the world, or as a protection against the cold in winter and insects in summer), while in Swaziland’s Bomvu Ridge (Bomvu means “red” in Zulu), archaeologists have discovered mines that were used at least forty thousand years ago to excavate red and yellow pigments for body painting. The word “ochre” comes from the Greek meaning “pale yellow,” but somewhere along the way the word shifted to suggest something more robust- something redder or browner or earthier. Now it can be used loosely to refer to almost any natural earthy pigment, although it most accurately describes earth that contains a measure of hematite, or iron ore.

What Other People Are Saying About This Book:

Color is the essence of landscape, of mood, of our whole perception of the physical world. Victoria Finlay has traveled through Iran, Afghanistan, and other places to investigate the origin of all the tantalizingly sensual ochers and reds and blues. What a creative idea for a book!” – -Robert D. Kaplan, author of The Ends of the Earth and Eastward to Tartary

“Part Travelogue, part history lesson, and part seminar, Color takes us to remote parts of the world…An inspired concept, Finlay shows the rich history behind what most of us take for granted.” – -SOMA: Left Coast Culture
SKU U0456
Author/Speaker/Editor Victoria Finlay
File/Trim Size 5.52 x 8.18
Format Paperback
ISBN 13 9780812971422
Number Of Pages 464
$17.00

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