The Art MuseumPhaidon Editors

Visit the world's most comprehensive and compelling museum in a book – from pre-historic times to the present, – over 1,600 artworks created with the expertise of 28 art world curators and historians.

"Unprecedented, unique, and vast in scope... a visually spectacular survey of world art. Destined to delight, inspire, and educate, as well as to become an invaluable, classic art-reference resource, it is very highly recommended." —Library Journal

Housing the finest art collection ever assembled, this revised, reformatted edition offers the museum experience without the boundaries of space and time, taking the reader on a tour around the world and through the ages. Its rooms and galleries display some 1,600 artworks, selected from the original collection, including paintings, sculpture, photographs, textiles, installations, performances, videos, prints, ceramics, manuscripts, metalwork, and jewel-work.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Size: 305 × 238 mm (12 × 9 3/8 in)
  • Pages: 584 pp
  • Illustrations: 1640 illustrations
  • ISBN: 9780714875026

Twenty-eight curators, critics, art historians, and artists contributed their expertise to create this art-lover's ideal museum. They come from such institutions as: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; the British Museum, London; the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the J. Paul Getty Museum, Malibu; the University of California, Berkeley; La Trobe University, Melbourne; the School of African and Oriental Studies, University of London; and The Courtauld Institute of Art, London.

"Why buy a mere art book when you could have a museum of your own? A colossal tome that, ranging across continents, periods, and artistic approaches, sets out to compile the perfect collection." —The Times

"In an age when so much information about art is gleaned electronically, this massive tome, with its beautiful reproductions, is a bold assertion of the importance of the printed page." —Art Quarterly

"This tome is chock-full of things you don't often see reproduced on this scale." —The New York Times

"Impressive... A new twist on collating art history in one place... From the ritualistic and religious to the abstract and expressionistic, you're in for momentous ride of culture through the ages."—

"An amazing pictorial look at Ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome, Byzantine, Islamic, Italian Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo, Neoclassicism, etc. There is so much to enjoy. It's great to have all this in one book, full of familiar and unfamiliar works, perfect to use as a quick reference and perfect also just for the pleasure of dipping into. Stupendous."—

"A museum in your living room... Avoid the queues with this expansive tome. Picture your ideal art gallery. No price for entry, no crowds, no Plexiglass cutting you off from the beautiful works you've come to see. Now if only you could have all that, on your coffee table, in the form o hundreds of pages bound together to be rifled through at your pleasure. Imagine that. How good your life could be. Hold the phone! Phaidon's new book The Art Museum. [...] Has everything the ultimate gallery world have, ready to be perused in the comfort of your own home... Even though it features an index laid out in rooms like a gallery map, you'd be hard-pressed to fit all this in one measly building... You'll be the well-read beating heart of every high-brow party you go to again, and you won't even have to tell people you never left the confines of your flat to learn it all."—ShortList

"A feast for the eyes... A monumental volume – a ferociously well-researched and detail one-stop shop for the history of art... I have to admit, I couldn't help imagining that this was a real museum, and that I'd have to walk through every single room before I found the exit. You'd be there for weeks. An exceptional choice of images [...] is matched by rich, colourful reproduction. It's a book to get lost in, possibly for the rest of your life." —Daily Mail

"Enjoy a private tour of the finest art collection ever assembled. An international panel of experts has selected nearly 2000 artworks from the greatest museums around the world, including, the Louvre, British Museum and the Prado." —

"Why buy a mere book when you could have an entire museum of your own?... Ground-breaking... Take an encyclopaedic tour through its imaginary galleries, crossing continents, periods and artistic approaches." —The Times, Saturday Review

"Walk your mind through the corridors of history without the confines of space and time to explore the art movements that have been shaping the world since time immemorial. Phaidon's new revised edition of The Art Museum [...] takes you on a detour of your very own personal museum from the Palaeolithic cave paintings to the 21st-century works of art." —