For art lovers everywhere, "Secret Lives of Great Artists" will teach you about the seamy and the heroic, the steamy and the gritty history behind the great masters of international art. You can learn about the artists behind all your favourite artworks - and the works they've inspired: Michelangelo had such repellent body odour that his assistants couldn't stand working for him. Gabriel Dante Rossetti's favourite pet was a wombat that slept on his dining room table. James McNeil Whistler once had to hock his mother's portrait to get out of debt. Vincent Van Gogh sometimes ate paint directly from the tube. Gustav Klimt allegedly fathered at least 40 illegitimate children.Edvard Munch's middle finger of his left hand got blown off by a gun in a tussle with a jilted former lover. Pablo Picasso did jail time for ripping off several statues from the Louvre. Georgia O'Keefe liked to paint in the nude. Salvador Dali concocted a perfume from dung to attract the attention of future wife Gala Eluard. Frida Kahlo loved to bathe her 300+ pound husband, Diego Rivera, in a tub filled with children's bath toys. Andy Warhol once guest-starred on TV's "The Love Boat".
Elizabeth Lunday is a journalist specializing in architecture and art. She writes the "Masterpieces" column for Mental_Floss magazine and lives in Forth Worth, Texas.