Gombrich on Shadows

Categories: | Art History | | Paintings | | Art Theory |
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Author: Ernst H. Gombrich Erika Langmuir
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Publisher: National Gallery Company Ltd
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About the book






Ernst H. Gombrich Biography

Sir Ernst Hans Josef Gombrich (; German: [ˈgɔmbʁɪç]; 30 March 1909 – 3 November 2001) was an Austrian-born art historian who, after settling in England in 1936, became a naturalised British citizen in 1947 and spent most of his working life in the United Kingdom. Gombrich was the author of many works of cultural history and art history, most notably The Story of Art, a book widely regarded as one of the most accessible introductions to the visual arts, and Art and Illusion, a major work in the psychology of perception that influenced thinkers as diverse as Carlo Ginzburg, Nelson Goodman, Umberto Eco, and Thomas Kuhn.


The son of Karl Gombrich and Leonie Hock, Gombrich was born in Vienna, Austria-Hungary, into an assimilated bourgeois family of Jewish origin who were part of a sophisticated social and musical milieu. His father was a lawyer and former classmate of Hugo von Hofmannsthal and his mother was a distinguished pianist who graduated from the Vienna Conservatoire with the School's Medal of Distinction. At the Conservatoire she was a pupil of, amongst others, Anton Bruckner. However, rather than follow a career as a concert pianist (which would have been difficult to combine with her family life in this period) she became an assistant of Theodor Leschetizky. She also knew Arnold Schoenberg, Gustav Mahler, Hugo Wolf and Johannes Brahms. Rudolf Serkin was a close family friend. Adolf Busch and members of the Busch Quartet regularly met and played in the family home. Throughout his life Gombrich maintained a deep love and knowledge of classical music. He was a competent cellist and in later life at home in London regularly played the chamber music of Haydn, Mozart, Schubert, Beethoven and others with his wife and his elder sister Dea Forsdyke, a concert violinist. Gombrich was educated at the Theresianum and at Vienna University, where he studied art history under Hans Tietze, Karl Maria Swoboda, Julius von Schlosser and Josef Strzygowski, completing a PhD thesis on the Mannerist architecture of Giulio Romano, supervised by Von Schlosser. Specialised in caricature, he was invited to help Ernst Kris, who was then keeper of decorative arts at the Kunsthistorisches Museum, on his graduating in 1933. In 1936 he married Ilse Heller (1910–2006), a pupil of his mother, and herself an accomplished pianist. Their only child, the Indologist Richard Gombrich, was born in 1937. They had two grandchildren: the educationalist Carl Gombrich, (b. 1965) and Leonie Gombrich (b. 1966), who is his literary executor.After publishing his first book A Little History of the World in German in 1936, written for children and adolescents, and seeing it become a hit only to be banned by the Nazis for pacifism, he fled to Britain in 1936 to take up a post as a research assistant at the Warburg Institute, University of London. During World War II, Gombrich worked for the BBC World Service, monitoring German radio broadcasts. When in 1945 an upcoming an ... Read full biography

Authors: Ernst H. Gombrich Erika Langmuir
Publisher: National Gallery Company Ltd
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ISBN13: 9781857091038
ISBN10: 1857091035
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Book Weight: 300
Book Dimensions: 140x220
Circulation: None
Publication date: Oct. 2, 1995
First Publication Date: None
Publication City/Country: London, United Kingdom

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