To the extent that the apprehension of art can be refined and thus improved through studying a book, this is a success. Avoiding the platitudes of ""art appreciation,"" it guides the reader through logically sequential areas of perception: of the subject as interaction between art and nature (""First we see the hills in the painting, then we see the painting in the hills""); of the painting (or other work) as embodiment of fundamental artistic elements (line, color, form); of personal and period style as a characteristic use of form. The choice of illustrative examples is imaginative and apposite; also wise is the insertion of a ""collage of pictures and quotations"" midway through for refreshment and reinforcement. A considerable section of exercises affords practice in experiencing line, composition, color, etc., suggested media are as varied as collage and photography. Equally fecund are the taste-forming tips for the collector and the traveler. For all its breadth, the book does not ignore the need to know materials and techniques (of drawing, painting, sculpture, print-making) nor the need quite simply to discriminate (as per the quote from Wolf Kahn--""Things to ignore: the fads of the moment""). The liberal use of quotations throughout is extended by the fine long bibliography. Altogether the distillation of an artist-curator-teacher's experience, and if youngsters often steer clear of such capsule courses, it could provide a syllabus for their teachers as well as a primer for adults.