The self-portrait has become the defining visual genre of our confessional age, but mordern artists are far from the first to have exploited its power and potential. In this broad cultural survey of the genre, art historians and critic James Hall brilliantly map the history of self-portraiture, from the earliest myths of Naricissus and the Christian tradition of 'beating witness' to the prolific self-image-making of today's contemporary artists.
The full range of self-portraits is covered here, from comic and caricature self-portraits to 'invented' or imaginary ones, as well as key collections of self-portraiture such as that of the Medici in Florence. Throughout, Hall assks why - and when - artists have chosen to make self-portraits, and looks deeply into the worlds and mindsets of the artists who have created them.
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