A lovely light read, by Victoria Finlay who also wrote Color: "A Natural History of the Palette". This book has beautiful photographs and anecdotes on the history and symbolic color. It explores things like the chemistry behind "Egyptian Blue" and how the Greeks incorporated it into their painting process.
Finlay relays how artists from prehistoric to modern eras have employed a mulititude of ingredients from pigments, gems, minerals, shells, soot to cow urine and how they were made into inks and paint.
It makes a lovely coffee table book/gift.