The catalogue, divided into two volumes, follows chronologically the development of Gauguin's work. Each painting is reproduced in color and is followed by commentary which analyzes the aesthetic qualities of his work and its relation to Gauguin's personal and professional life, bringing to light his tumultuous cultural, social and political world. Side-bars and inserts accompany the text reproducing photographs of family, friends and colleagues (which include other artistic greats as Pissaro and Van Gogh), and portions of letters they exchanged. The expositions of each painting and their history are carefully recorded in the catalogue. A final, vibrant chronology of Gauguin's life further enlivens the reading of this brilliant text, and opens the doors to a sensuous and pulsating world. The second volume is entirely dedicated to the works spanning from 1887-1888. 1888 was a year of artistic and intellectual upheaval in Europe, full of change and revolution. This volume closely follows and documents Gauguin's progressive escape from the boundaries of Western art and his search for freedom of expression, which he finds by mastering his formula on synthetism, a form of primitivism.This authoritative, and at the same time entertaining work, can be appreciated by both the novice and professional. It can be read chronologically or in order of interest. Ideal for the arm chair art traveler for it features paintings from over 40 museums and private collections worldwide, and includes 9 never before seen paintings by Gauguin.