The Joining of the Arts

Danish Art and Design 1880–1910


This book is not yet published, but will be available from March 2021.

ISBN: 9788793604698 Category:

Mirjam Gelfer-Jørgense


A fascinating insight into changing beauty ideals throughout Western art history

When Were You Beautiful? invites you on a journey through the history of art with a view to challenging our current, narrow ideals of beauty. Showcasing 50 works of art spanning over two thousand years, the book will explore our ever evolving notions of what it means to be beautiful, whilst introducing the reader to significant artists, movements and aesthetic expressions across Western art history.

The book provides a key to quickly identifying artistic representations of those features, similar to our own, that we today have come to consider less attractive; from the unibrow, to grey hair, to protruding ears. Thus this book equips its reader with a new source of self-confidence and a tool for some entertaining comparisons: even if my features don’t measure up to current ideals of beauty, I can at least point to the fact that I share those features with portrait-worthy historical personalities.

These many and carefully curated images present both outer and inner beauty, and will be accompanied by research-based yet accessible introductions to the artists, the portrayed and their times. Covering most of Western art history the book is also an unfolding story of the many shifts, innovations and movements through the centuries.

Additional information

Weight 300 g
Dimensions 24.5 x 27.3 cm
Publisher name Thames and Hudson Ltd
Publication date 7 March 2021
Number of pages 532
Format Hardback
Dimensions 24.5 x 27.3 cm
Weight 300 g
Trine Ross is an art historian with an advanced magister degree from The University of Copenhagen. She is the author of a number of art books and is currently an art critic for the national Danish newspaper Politiken. She also travels the country lecturing on art and culture. Trine often appears on Danish radio and television (for years now as one of the quick-witted and beloved captains in the Art Quiz series).