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These books are surveys; they provide general overviews and examinations of art history in its entirety. These books give you a good idea of the collected knowledge and understandings in art history. Use these books to get a general understanding, rather than an in-depth examination of a specific subject in art history.


The story of art by E.H. Gombrich

Call no. N5300.G632

The first edition of this book was published in 1950, but the updated versions remain relevant today. This is a seminal text on the history of art.


Mirror of the world: a new history of art by Julian Bell

Call no. N5300.B433

This book traces the history of art from its very earliest forms to its contemporary counterparts. Images and narrative help to present the story.


30,000 years of art: the story of human creativity across time and space

Call no. N5300.Y39

This is an image-rich and heavy book, but it covers almost all art historical periods and regions in the world. This is a follow up to “The Art Book” with chronological explanations.


Art since 1900: modernism, antimodernism, postmodernism

Call no. N6490.A784a

This book of more than 100 articles by four respected and influential art historians covers the definitive events of art history in chronological order since 1900.

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