Cover image for Everything you know about art is wrong / Matt Brown.
Everything you know about art is wrong / Matt Brown.
Publication Information:
London : Batsford, 2017.
Physical Description:
160 pages : illustrations ; 20 cm
"A highly entertaining read for anyone with even a passing interest in art and art history. This myth-busting book takes you on a great ride through the lives of starving (and not so starving) artists, unusual exhibitions and painting blunders throughout history. Think that the Mona Lisa is the most reproduced image in history? Think again - it's the face of Queen Elizabeth II on stamps and currency around the world. Think that Vincent van Gogh chopped his own ear off? Think again - Paul Gauguin lopped it off with a sword during a heated argument. Also, learn which famous painting led a bunch of Oxford academics to create a flute that can be played with your bottom, and why there is a bust of Lenin at the South Pole. Packed with details on popular artworks, it explodes a range of myths from the fame of the Mona Lisa (when it was stolen in 1911, more people visited the Louvre to see the empty space than the painting itself) to which famous artist designed the Chupa Chups logo. Myths regarding techniques, circumstances and lives of artists are all covered to give you a fascinating insight into the true history of art."--Provided by publisher.


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
700 BRO Book Adult General Collection

On Order



Art is just a load of fancy paintings hung in a gallery. Or is it? Find out the truth, in the myth-busting book!

Why is the Mona Lisa really smiling? Who really invented photography? Which painting was hung upside-down for over a month before anyone noticed? In the intriguing, outrageous, and often provoking world of the visual arts, nothing is quite as it seems--or as many people believe. Whether it's the notion that all artists are starving young men or that Walt Disney actually designed Mickey Mouse, false ideas persist. Everything You Know About Art Is Wrong sets us straight, revealing the truth about such things as the world's first instance of photobombing in 1843, the destruction of Vincent van Gogh's Sunflowers during World War II, the Damien Hirst spot painting that landed on Mars, and so much more.

Author Notes

Matt Brown has been a scientific editor, writer, and event host, working for Reed Elsevier and Nature Publishing Group. He served as the Royal Institution's quizmaster for three years, and has also put on science quizzes for the Royal Society, the Manchester Science Museum, and the Hunterian Museum. In addition to making contributions to several popular-science books, Matt has written extensively about London. His previous solo books include London Night and Day and Everything You Know About London Is Wrong (both Batsford). He remains Editor-at-Large of