Yale School of Art
1156 Chapel Street, POB 208339
New Haven, Connecticut, 06520-8339
(203) 432-2600

518, Painting, Theory

By most accounts, theory, as an interdisciplinary method of analysis, is defined as a speculative or hypothetical or plausible set of acceptable principles or body of principles that try to explain specific phenomena. The word ‘painting’ on the other hand refers to both the process and finished product that constitutes a major part of the visual arts. This course will begin with the normative and foundational understandings of both “theory” and “painting”, with the aim of examining the various ways in which theory has been used in relation to painting (both by artists and viewers), and vice versa. Consideration will be given to theories around representation, narrative/narratology, colour, process, history, and analysis/semiotics. Readings will consist of texts written by various authors including cultural critics, curators, artists, and literary writers.

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