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Renaissance radical - An earthly delight not to be missed

Renaissance radical

An earthly delight not to be missed


Hieronymus Bosch. Complete Works

US$ 150
Edition: English
Availability: In Stock
In the midst of the realist-leaning artistic climate of the Late Gothic and Early Renaissance, Netherlandish painter Hieronymus Bosch (c. 1450–1516) was more than an anomaly. Bosch’s paintings are populated with grotesque scenes of fantastical creatures succumbing to all manner of human desire, fantasy, and angst. One of his greatest inventions was to take the figural and scenic representations known as drolleries, which use the monstrous and the grotesque to illustrate sin and evil, and to transfer them from the marginalia of illuminated manuscripts into large-format panel paintings. Alongside traditional hybrids of man and beast, such as centaurs, and mythological creatures such as unicorns, devils, dragons, and griffins, we also encounter countless mixed creatures freely invented by the artist. Many subsidiary scenes illustrate proverbs and figures of speech in common use in Bosch’s day. In his Temptation of St Anthony triptych, for example, the artist shows a messenger devil wearing ice skates, evoking the popular expression that the world was “skating on ice”—meaning it had gone astray. In his pictorial translation of proverbs, in particular, Bosch was very much an innovator.

Bosch—whose real name was Jheronimus van Aken—was widely copied and imitated: the number of surviving works by Bosch’s followers exceeds the master’s own production by more than tenfold. Today only 20 paintings and eight drawings are confidently assigned to Bosch’s oeuvre. He continues to be seen as a visionary, a portrayer of dreams and nightmares, and the painter par excellence of hell and its demons. 

Featuring brand new photography of recently restored paintings, this exhaustive book, published in view of the upcoming 500th anniversary of Bosch’s death, covers the artist’s complete works. Discover Bosch’s pictorial inventions in splendid reproductions with copious details and a huge fold-out spread, over 110 cm (43 in.) long, of The Garden of Earthly Delights. Art historian and acknowledged Bosch expert Stefan Fischer examines just what it was about Bosch and his painting that proved so immensely influential.
  • “… the most comprehensive study to date… This book offers an unprecedented insight into how the work of this erudite artist has been viewed under Catholic dogma.”

    —, Television Española, Madrid
  • “Our absolute favourite… a magnificent book… The book is as impressive for its size as for the quality of its reproductions, whose goal is to permit the reader finally to grasp the most beautiful triptychs in their totality… Here truly the magic and precision of the artist are revealed, along with his entire symbolology.”

    — Le Parisien Magazine, Paris
  • “This contemporary of Johannes Gutenberg and Christopher Columbus was, with brush in hand, already as modern and as monstrously playful as the Swiss science-fiction surrealist H.R. Giger 500 years later. He was as sensually sinful as the gallant Helmut Newton and as imaginative as Spain’s ingenious top eccentric Salvador Dalí. Here for the first time all his paintings are published in one book.”

    — 10 vor 10 (SRF 1), Zurich
  • “TASCHEN’s new book on Bosch is surely the most lavishly produced monograph ever published on the artist. Weighing almost ten pounds, its three hundred pages include superb colour reproductions of Bosch’s paintings and drawings, supplemented by numerous enlarged details that allow us to examine the details of Bosch’s fantastic imagery with a clarity seldom possible, even when we confront them in a museum gallery.”

    — The Burlington Magazine, London
  • “Sumptuous! That’s the adjective that comes to mind when leafing through the titanic volume that TASCHEN – truly now the temple-guardians of world art – have devoted to Hieronymus Bosch. An almost exhaustive work combining luxurious illustrations and commentaries of exceptionally fascinating scholarship; reading this volume requires time and attention if one is to grasp the full subtlety of the delirious or Dantesque visions that sit side-by-side with the most traditional religious representations. Throughout it swarm the myriad strange creatures born directly of the artist’s prodigious imagination. Such opulence makes of this jewel of the bookcase both a work of art and a testimony to the magnificent artistic prodigality of the man.”

    — Le Nouvel Observateur/ Blog Nomade’s Land, Paris
  • “You step into this majestic homage to Hieronymus Bosch as you might into a film on a Hollywood cinema screen… No second thoughts: buy this immense book full of often scabrous images. They will surely make of you an inspired being. The reproductions have immense presence, often over the full double-spread. The selection of details for enlargement is invariably judicious.”

    — Blog des arts, Lyons
  • “The complete works published by TASCHEN is exceptional in every regard. First and foremost, for the sheer scale of the book. Then there is the quality of the full-page colour reproductions. And the excellent selection of details in extraordinary enlargements… The quality of the explanatory texts is also exceptional.”

    — L’Echo Magazine, Geneva
  • “A magnificent new volume on Hieronymus Bosch offers much more than just fantastic pictures: it revises the research to date… Stefan Fischer knows all that is known about Hieronymus Bosch… So the book represents a revision of Bosch research, which is all the more remarkable as it is conceived above all as a treat for the eyes. TASCHEN has already produced several such expensive (yet still cheap at the price given the quality of the print), heavyweight, illustrated volumes, and has always won over leading specialists so that in addition to the visual opulence they become standard works of art history… The publisher knows how to present books as spectacles… Simply a fantastic volume.”

    — Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Frankfurt am Main
  • “The complete works of Hieronymus Bosch in one phenomenal publication… Fischer meticulously interprets each individual work, especially as the book zooms in on detail, dissecting the dense scenes of the total views, enlarging the grotesque, rendering Bosch’s burgeoning cosmos recognizable again. This splendid book opens up Bosch’s ‘hidden-object’ universe anew… About 25 years ago in an introduction to a TASCHEN publication it was stated that, ‘The best opportunity to study the strange world of Hieronymus Bosch’ was the Prado, as no other museum had as many Bosch paintings as the one in Madrid. So Walter Bosing, whose claim is now practically discounted by TASCHEN itself. For surely this truly fantastic publication by art historian Stefan Fischer is the most convenient opportunity to study the worlds of Hieronymus Bosch. Fischer aims to wrench open a horizon.”

    — Frankfurter Rundschau, Frankfurt am Main
  • “A measured, scholarly and referenced account of the artist, his period and his workshop practices… An artwork in itself.”

    — The West Australian, Perth