The art of painting has been an important part of humanity from the beginning of time. From cave walls to modern street murals, paintings remain a strong thread in the tapestry of humankind. Art is a universal form of expression, and paintings can help bring cultures together by communicating different ideals and perceptions.

Painting dates back to the Stone Age, when people used cave walls as their canvases and natural pigments and basic tools. In the past and present, paintings are influenced by religion, nature, technology, and events. The ancient Egyptians painted pictures and hieroglyphs on walls and stones with a focus on portraying the afterlife. Much of the fine art we see from Ancient Greece was created on vases. Roman murals depicting everyday life were discovered on the walls of the ruined cities of Pompeii and Herculaneum. The Byzantine era gave way to artists utilizing gold in their frescoes and other images. Thirteenth-century painter Giotto made a breakthrough in the art world by using egg tempera, a binding agent of fresh egg yolks, in his work. From the Sistine Chapel to a Picasso masterpiece, the world of painting has been, and always will be, expansive and varied. 

Shop paintings from our sellers' vast collections, including many original paintings signed by the artists. Bold oil paintings or subtle watercolors show your personality and style whether you're adding to a niche set or enhancing your living room. Admire the composition of a painting of a brilliant flower or a voracious bird of prey. A landscape of a favorite holiday destination brings back happy memories and a still life showing an unusual compilation of objects adds a quirky look to your patio.

New and vintage paintings alike are available in the vast AbeBooks seller selections. Search rare and unique pieces to intrigue any artist or fine art lover. Buy paintings to expand your fine art collection or decorate your home tastefully and elegantly.