6 Best Fictional Art-History Novels for a Beautiful Springtime Escape
We’ve found out exactly where all the best art galleries are and have our book club game on lock. So it only follows that we’re currently craving some serious literary-artsy action between the pages of our next read. Art-history fiction is a super-niche genre that relies on historical fact to bring famous artists, paintings, and events to life through embellished storytelling. It’s fun, informative, and totally intoxicating. So grab a glass of your favorite under-$15-bottle (hey, these starving artists feel you!), and get cozy with a story inspired by your favorite creative.
<em><a data-affiliate-link="" href="https://www.amazon.com/Sunflowers-Sheramy-Bundrick/dp/0061765279?tag=bm01f-20" rel="noskim" target="_blank">Sunflowers</a></em>Of course, any novel about Vincent van Gogh must have major doses of sunflowers, whimsy, and uncontainable joy… balanced out, of course, with serious angst, torment, and depression. Bundrick’s story handles that wildly varied juxtaposition with an effortlessness that captivates you from the first page. She tells the story of a young sex worker named Rachel as she falls for — and subsequently has an intense, mad love affair with — van Gogh himself. It’s heartbreaking and romantic, and, yes, there is an ear involved.
<em><a data-affiliate-link="" href="https://www.amazon.com/Modern-Art-Evelyn-Toynton/dp/1883285186/?tag=bm01f-20" rel="noskim" target="_blank">Modern Art</a> </em>Being married to a depressed, philandering, drunk genius is hard — and no one knows this better than Lee Krasner, abstract expressionist and wife to Jackson Pollock. Toynton’s sharp, feminist tome maps the real lives of Krasner and Pollock onto her fictional characters Belle Prokoff and Clay Madden, using Prokoff to explore the later years of Krasner’s life as she’s still grappling with the shock waves of Pollock’s death and her own artistic ambitions. It’s a quiet meditation on what it means to give your life to someone else, especially once that someone else is gone.
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