|The Crucifixion with de Rynck|
|The Crucifixion with Barbe-Gall|
Barbe-Gall engages the reader´s entire brain, she wants you to feel as well as see. I suppose that is why she chooses the word "look" instead of "read" in the book title. And her selection is wider, she prepares you for any kind of art experience, while de Rynck has a very narrow selection and well, he risks loosing the reader at an early stage, simply because he does not have a very personal voice. He just staples facts upon facts. By this I´m not saying I´m sorry to have de Rynck´s book, but I think it will serve more as a kind of dictionary, rather than a book that I go to for inspiration. However, I can be wrong. First impressions aren´t always right and a few years on I might find that de Rynck is a winner in the long run.
If you want an excellent introduction to all kinds of art (and why shouldn´t you?), I would heartily recommend Barbe-Gall. If I may briefly take a stand on the soap box I would like to say that art should be a concern for anyone who aspires to be a Mensch.