Blowing apart the idea of an art museum

10 years in the making, The Art Museum will redefine how you look at art

Phaidon has created its own museum, in its own special way. And it's like no other museum in the world. The Art Museum gathers together 2,700 of the world's greatest, most important and influential art works - curated by a team of over 100 global art experts - in one place. 

It's the most ambitious project that Phaidon has undertaken. "With its inventive format, scholarship, and vast scope, it is unlike any other book on art ever published and will provide great knowledge and pleasure for years to come," says Phaidon publisher Richard Schlagman of the project which has taken over a decade to research and put together.

The Art Museum is not like any other museum, it is open 24-hours-a-day, 365-days-a-year. Its luxurious, 2-ft wide page spreads brim with iconic artworks from big name museums and galleries, as well as those hidden away in private collections - some only accessible with a pair of sturdy hiking boots and a map of the more remote parts of the planet. There are Cave paintings and Egyptian sarcophagi, friezes and woodblock prints, stained glass and ceramics, masterpieces by Van Gogh and Vermeer, photographs, contemporary paintings, land art and monumental sculptures by Anish Kapoor and Antony Gormley - almost every form of art imaginable.

With just a flick of the page you can travel through time and space from beneath the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City, displayed across a double page expanse, to the middle of Dennis Oppenheim's Annual Rings in 1968, carved into the snow on the Maine/New Brunswick border of Canada and the USA. 

The Art Museum is not limited to one era, one century or even strictly arranged in chronological order. Instead, artworks are laid out in 450 'rooms', within 25 'galleries', organised next to similar works reflected through time and influence. 'Temporary' exhibitions are on show throughout the book for a closer look at themes such as Islamic Mysticism, The Nineteenth-century Body and _Drawing in Space. W_hole rooms are devoted to the likes of Picasso, Leonardo da Vinci and The Tomb of Tutankhamun.

We'll be bringing you much more about the artwork you can find within this 'museum in a book' over the coming weeks, but for now take a look at the numbers below to whet your appetite. Order it now from the Phaidon Online Store.

2,700 - the number of art works, 992 - the number of pages,__ 823 -__ the number of paintings,__ 650 -__ the number of collections art has been taken from,__ 450 -__ the number of rooms to 'walk' through each time you open it,__ 406 -__ the number of sculptures,__ 244 -__ the pieces of ceramic art,__ 100 -__ the number of people who have created this book (it's actually a few more, but we thought we'd make it a round number),__ 60 -__ the number of countries you don't have to travel between to see all the artwork,__ 50 -__ photographs,__ 47 -__ installations,__ 15 -__ ceilings,__ 7 -__ the number of kilos The Art Museum weighs,__ 3 -__ the number of millennia the works in The Art Museum span,__ 2 -__ thrones and 1 suit of armour.