FANS OF POP ART, DISNEY, DESIGNER JEWELS AND MORE WILL WANT TO MAKE ROOM ON THE SHELVES FOR THESE RECENT RELEASES
By Karen Amster-Young
Collecting is not about what you have but what you love. Passion fuels collecting, and it’s these objects that define us over time and bring joy as we navigate our world. In fact, according to many psychology experts, collecting as a hobby triggers happy chemicals in the brain and serves as a powerful form of self-expression, self-confidence and life enjoyment, not to mention creating a social connection between fellow collectors.
It’s no surprise, then, that countless books have been written about the art of collecting and the hobby’s many categories. Peruse any bookstore, and you’ll find tomes on topics ranging from fine wines and watches to comics and antiques. This season, the world’s top publishers bring us a whole new batch of coffee table books that will catch the eye of discerning collectors.
Below is a curated roundup of our favorite recently published books for fans of photography, jewelry, fine art and more.
Cartier: The Impossible Collection
This is the ultimate book about all things Cartier, one of the world’s premier luxury jewelers since the 19th century. With boutiques around the globe and an official supplier to many royal courts, Cartier is known for its timeless elegance, technical ability and artistic sensitivity. Clientele over the years reads like a who’s who of celebrities, intellectuals and royalty, including history-changing men and women such as the Duchess of Windsor, Gloria Swanson, Elizabeth Taylor, Jean Cocteau and Alberto Santos-Dumont. This limited-edition book (complete with art-quality paper and linen clamshell presentation case) provides not only a thorough, historical retrospective about Cartier, but also enthralling behind-the-scenes stories about the creation of 100 of Cartier’s most exceptional pieces. $1,200; Assouline
Published to commemorate 100 years since the photographer’s birth, this book features a far-reaching selection of Richard Avedon’s iconic and beautiful photography. Featuring more than 100 photos chosen by artists, designers, musicians, writers and figures from the world of fashion, it presents an in-depth look at why the name Avedon has become synonymous with excellence. The featured participants – including Naomi Campbell, Elton John, Spike Lee, Kate Moss, Chloë Sevigny and Christy Turlington – were asked to select a photograph by Avedon that had an impact on them. Within just a few pages of the book, Avedon’s contribution to our collective visual culture becomes obvious. Highlights include photos from his In the American West series and images of the social justice movement, as well as examples of the photographer’s groundbreaking advertising and fashion work. $100; Rizzoli
The Art of Walt Disney: From Mickey Mouse to the Magic Kingdoms and Beyond (Disney 100 Celebration Edition)
Since its original publication in 1973, this book has been essential reading for Disney fans and collectors. Recently revised and featuring a foreword by renowned Disney animator Floyd Norman, the bestselling classic is back in print as an homage to 100 years of all things Disney. Covering everything from Disney’s early days to the beloved theme parks, the updated edition’s 500-plus pages celebrate a century of concept art and animation and include 500 color illustrations from classics such as Sleeping Beauty, Mary Poppins and The Jungle Book. Also prominently featured are archival images and historical anecdotes about Walt Disney and the undeniable mark he has left on the world. $100; Abrams Books
Gabrielle “Coco” Chanel’s most extraordinary designs from her 60 years in fashion are the focus of this luxe coffee table book. From the two-piece suit to the little black dress and the quilted handbag, this extensive Chanel compilation includes the iconic fashions passed down from generation to generation. Chanel was a trailblazer who, from the onset, wanted to create designs that work for the active and independent woman, and any Chanel collector will appreciate the book’s plethora of information about the designer’s creative process, exploring each ensemble’s construction and adornment. Featuring new photographs by fashion photographer Nicholas Alan Cope and rare archival images, the book captures everything that made Chanel one of the most important designers of all time. $70; V&A Publishing
Roy Lichtenstein: The Impossible Collection
Highlighting 100 of Roy Lichtenstein’s most celebrated works, this recently re-released tome is itself a piece of art. The featured works were personally selected by art historian Avis Berman, who has conducted more than 200 oral histories for the Roy Lichtenstein Foundation and written numerous essays on the artist, who is best known for his witty, comic strip-inspired paintings. Included are beautifully reproduced paintings such as Whaam! and Drowning Girl, later reinterpretations of works by artists such as Picasso and Matisse, and public commissions like Lichtenstein’s mural in Times Square. Pop Art fans will appreciate the thought-provoking and in-depth look at an artist who helped redefine art in the 1960s. $1,050; Assouline
TAG Heuer Carrera: The Race Never Stops
Nicholas Biebuyck’s TAG Heuer Carrera is a beautiful homage to the Swiss luxury brand’s iconic Carrera timepiece, which made its debut 60 years ago. Comprising six chapters, each focusing on a decade of the watch’s history, the book captures the essence of what makes the Carrera a masterpiece of design, workmanship and luxury. In addition to offering insights from historians, journalists and watch connoisseurs, the book spotlights the most celebrated Carrera models from 1963 to 2023. Each featured timepiece is accompanied by detailed descriptions and images, making the book an ideal reference for watch enthusiasts everywhere. $100; La Martinière/Abrams
Francesca Amfitheatrof: Fantastical Jewels
Francesca Amfitheatrof is first and foremost a storyteller, but instead of words, she spins her tales with diamonds and gold. Louis Vuitton’s first artistic director of jewelry and watches, Amfitheatrof derives inspiration from her love of fashion, capturing history, elegance and timeless themes in all her work. Exploring four of the designer’s stunning collections, this book will leave even the most well-versed jewelry collectors mesmerized as it delves into Amfitheatrof’s unique alchemical process, bringing the reader along on her creative journey, from inspiration to completion. Featuring sketches, photographs and personal notes, the pages read like a journal, giving readers a glimpse of the designer’s private world. $115; Rizzoli
KAREN AMSTER-YOUNG is a strategic advisor for communications agencies, an author and a journalist. Her work has been published in The New York Times, Insider.com, Hamptons magazine and many other regional and national media platforms. She is a regular contributor to James Lane Post and the author of the nonfiction book The 52 Weeks (Skyhorse).