By Laura J. Snyder
The amazing tale of ways an artist and a scientist in seventeenth-century Holland remodeled the best way we see the world.
On a summer time day in 1674, within the small Dutch urban of Delft, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek—a fabric salesman, neighborhood bureaucrat, and self-taught typical philosopher—gazed via a tiny lens set right into a brass holder and came across a never-before imagined global of microscopic existence. even as, in a close-by attic, the painter Johannes Vermeer was once utilizing one other optical gadget, a digital camera obscura, to test with mild and create the main luminous images ever beheld.
“See for yourself!” was once the clarion name of the 1600s. Scientists peered at nature via microscopes and telescopes, making the discoveries in astronomy, physics, chemistry, and anatomy that ignited the medical Revolution. Artists investigated nature with lenses, mirrors, and digital camera obscuras, growing terribly targeted work of plant life and bugs, and scenes full of sensible results of sunshine, shadow, and colour. by means of extending the achieve of sight the recent optical tools caused the conclusion that there's greater than meets the attention. yet additionally they raised questions about how we see and what it skill to work out. In answering those questions, scientists and artists in Delft replaced how we understand the world.
In Eye of the Beholder, Laura J. Snyder transports us to the streets, hotels, and guildhalls of seventeenth-century Holland, the place artists and scientists amassed, and to their studios and laboratories, the place they combined paints and ready canvases, floor and polished lenses, tested and dissected bugs and different animals, and invented the trendy inspiration of seeing. With allure and narrative aptitude Snyder brings Vermeer and Van Leeuwenhoek—and the boys and ladies round them—vividly to existence. the tale of those geniuses and the transformation they engendered exhibits us why we see the world—and our position inside of it—as we do today.
Eye of the Beholder was once named "A top paintings e-book of the 12 months" via Christie's and "A most sensible learn of the 12 months" by way of New Scientist in 2015.