Modern Art


Art and culture are intrinsically linked. As the Western
world experienced and adjusted to the industrial revolution,
world wars, advances in science, philosophy,
technology and communications, so too were art,
music, literature, poetry, theater and dance transformed.
Emotion, individuality, experimentation, discovery, freedom
and spontaneity influenced and inspired modern
art. The avant-garde styles sparked endless conversations
and heated debate about the open-ended question
of what art is.

In this course we will explore some of the major styles
of modern art during the first half of the 20th century. So
many diverse, visionary trailblazers rocked the Western
art world with controversial new creative expressions
and ideas. For those who had grown complacent with
the comforts and predictable qualities and themes
of finely finished traditional art, the modernists broke
new ground. Many were received with shock, dismay,
disgust, disbelief and absolute vitriol. You’ve probably
heard the view that “any five-year-old could do that.”

Cubism, Fauvism, Surrealism, Dadaism, the Washington
Color School and Abstract Expressionism are just a few
of the artistic movements we will discuss.

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