Art and critical analysis: Western European art under the microscope

Course Dates: 18/01/23 - 15/03/23
Time: 10:30 - 12:30
Location: Online
Concentrating on major works of art and significant artists across periods ranging from 1300 to 1900 and beyond this course we will study and explore the impact on the public’s appreciation of art and how that might be influenced by critical analysis including the vagaries of fashion.
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Book your place
In stock
Full fee £169.00 Senior fee £135.00 Concession £110.00

This course has now started

Course Code: VB772

Started Wed, day, 18 Jan - 15 Mar '23

Duration: 8 sessions (over 9 weeks)

Please note: We offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. Just visit our online Help Center for more information on a range of topics including fees, online learning and FAQs.

What is the course about?

From the earliest periods in art there has been criticism of art both positive and negative. Indeed, a substantial body of texts on the subject of art survives to our current period. This course will study and explore a wide variety of art works from across a number of centuries of European art history in the context of critical reception of said works in the form of text written about artists such as Cimabue and Giotto, including, the critical reception and others including Pisanello, the Pollaiuolo and Leonardo, drawing on text from Dante Alighieri and Giorgio Vasari and more.

What impact did these commentaries have on art practise and the artists themselves and can critics be seen to be responsible for influencing and thus changing the course of art history? These fundamental issues among others will be explored in this eight-week course.

This is a live online course. You will need:
- Internet connection. The classes work best with Chrome.
- A computer with microphone and camera is best (e.g. a PC/laptop/iMac/MacBook), or a tablet/iPad/smart phone/iPhone if you don't have a computer.
- Earphones/headphones/speakers.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.

What will we cover?

• The invention of the Renaissance

• Gender, the body and the Nude in Art

• Giorgio Vasari, Michelangelo and the Critical reception of Florentine art versus Venetian art

• The Invention of Baroque: the rise and fall of Caravaggio

• Vermeer: Fame, bankruptcy and critical revival

• William Hogarth and criticism, Social commentary and the Conversation Piece

• From Pre-Raphaelitism to the Modernity of Impressionism, John Ruskin & Roger Fry.

What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...

By the end of this course, you should be able to:

· Discuss something why the Renaissance came about. For example, how did writers and critics promote the idea who of the Renaissance and why? And how did their critical analysis contribute to the creation of the Renaissance ideal?

· List / describe 3 examples of writers and critics changed the course of art history

· Identify works of art that were promoted and/or demoted by critical analysis.

What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?

This course is suitable for all levels.

You should be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions, demonstrations, hand-outs and health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion.

How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?

You will be taught online with slide presentations and group discussions. Handouts will be provided by your tutor to support your learning on the course; these handouts will be available online/digitally for download via the college’s Google Classroom. You will be sent an invitation to join the Google Classroom within a week of the course start date.

Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?

You might wish to purchase a notebook for taking notes. You might wish to buy some of the books on any reading list provided.

When I've finished, what course can I do next?

The Mirror of Nature – VB128, this is a 7-week course at 10:30 am, beginning Weds 18th Oct, 2023
The Foreign Invention of British Art - VB439, this is a 7-week course at 14:00, beginning Weds 18th Oct, 2023
The Dutch and Flemish Golden Age – VB391, this is a 5-week course at 14:00, beginning Thurs 19th Oct, 2023.

Leslie Primo

Leslie Primo has spent more than 15 years giving lectures to the general public at the National Gallery for the Information and Education departments. During this time he graduated with a degree in History of Art and an MA in Renaissance Studies from Birkbeck, University College of London. In his studies he specialised in early Medieval and Renaissance studies, including, Italian Renaissance Drawing, Art and Architecture in Europe 1250-1400 Art and Architecture in Europe 1400-1500, Medici and Patronage, Narrative Painting in the Age of Giotto, and the work of Peter Paul Rubens focusing on his paintings of the Judgement of Paris, and Greek Myth in paintings. He is also an accredited Art Society lecturer.

Please note: We reserve the right to change our tutors from those advertised. This happens rarely, but if it does, we are unable to refund fees due to this. Our tutors may have different teaching styles; however we guarantee a consistent quality of teaching in all our courses.