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

Painting and Printmaking Art 576, Isms and Wasms: A Thumbnail History of Modern (and Anti-Modern) Art from the “Mainstream” to the Delta According to the Men and Women Who Made the Work and Rode the Currents

In a scant two semesters, this course will cover a lot of ground temporally, geographically and artistically. Its purpose is to familiarize emerging artists of today with some of the principal tendencies, protagonists and practices that set in motion the currents and counter-currents of visual art – chiefly painting, sculpture, print-making, photography, installation, performance and conceptual work – from the late-19th to the early 21st centuries. It will involve extensive looking, select reading (much of it texts by artists,) some lectures combined with focused seminar-style discussion (you’ve got to say-to-play) some writing and drawing, and above all mental agility (park your intellectual assumptions, cultural prejudices and aesthetic as well as anti-aesthetic “taste” at the door.) Are you sure you know what Walter Benjamin meant by “aura?” Does an artist’s ‘identity’ or biography affect interpretation of their work, and if so in which cases and to what extent? What do you think about “bad” people making “good art?” Who’s your favorite Academic artist, Realist, Impressionist, Post-Impressionist, Cubist, Futurist, Constructivist, Expressionist, Surrealist, muralist, Abstract Expressionist, Informel artist, Neo-Dadaist, Pop artist, Minimalist, Gutai artist, member of Spiral, Queer artist, New York Conceptualist, Continental European Conceptualist, Russian Conceptualist, Contemporary “Global” Misconceptualist? And why? Fasten your seat belts it will be a bumpy ride. Students are encouraged to take both semesters successively, however, with permission of the instructor, other arrangements are possible.

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