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CAIRO BOOKS's Description
This fascinating study of art gallery interiors examines the changing ideals
and practices of galleries in Europe and North America from the 18th to the
late 20th century. It offers a detailed account of the different displays that
have been createdthe colors of the background walls, lighting, furnishings,
the height and density of the art works on showand it traces the different
scientific, political and commercial influences that lay behind their
development. Charlotte Klonk shows that scientists like Hermann von Helmholtz
and Wilhelm Wundt advanced theories of perception that played a significant
role in justifying new modes of exhibiting. Equally important for the changing
modes of exhibition in art galleries was what Michael Baxandall has called the
period eye,” a way of seeing informed by the impact of new fashions in interior
decoration and by department store and shop window displays. The history of
museum interiors, she argues, should be appreciated as a revealing chapter in
the broader history of experience.