British art: 1900 - 1950

Course Dates: 30/04/19 - 02/07/19
Time: 14:00 - 16:10
Location: KS - Keeley Street
Tutor: Julia Musgrave

Explore the art of British modern artists and their relationship to the art of continental Europe between 1900-50. Who led developments and why did it take so long for them to gain recognition? Includes a gallery visit.


What is the course about?

We will study the development of modern art in England in the early 20th Century. We will consider how ‘modernism’ impacted the work of British artists, critics, and theorists; the impact of two world wars on British art and artists; key works from the period 1900-1950 and how they were influenced by avant garde theories from France, Germany, Italy and Russia. Were the key British artists of this period following a tradition of ‘British’ art, or were they injecting a much-needed dose of fresh ideas from the continent?

What previous students liked most about this course:

“Excellent and knowledgeable tutor. Very good communication and very well prepared.”


What will we cover?

• The legacy of the 19th Century: British Academic art and the ‘problem’ of ‘bourgeois taste’
• The New English Art Club and the influence of late 19th Century French Art
• The Camden Town Group; Roger Fry and Post- Impressionism; The Bloomsbury Group
• The Art of the Machine; The impact of the First World War
• Freud, Psychiatry and Surrealism
• Constructivism and Abstract Art
• The power of landscape in the inter-war years
• The impact of the Second World War.

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

• Have an understanding of the chronology of British Modernism
• Be able to define the difference between ‘modernist painting’ and the painting of modernity
• Understand the legacy of 19th Century art
• Be aware of key works of art and artists by the British Modernists of the early 20th century.
• Discuss the influence of the continental ‘avant garde’ on British painting in the early 20th Century
• Be able to discuss artworks with more confidence.

What previous students have achieved on this course:
“I now feel able to notice elements in a painting beyond the aesthetic.”


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

The course is open to all.

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. You should be able to use numbers and be able to do simple measurements and calculations.

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

You will be taught with short lectures, slide shows and discussions. There will be at least one gallery visit.

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

You may wish to buy some of the books on any reading list given out in class. Please note we are unable to guarantee seats on gallery visits so you may have to stand and to walk between exhibits. You might prefer to invest in a lightweight portable seat.

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

General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details


Sorry, this course is now full

Course Code: VB423

Full Tue, day, 30 Apr - 02 Jul '19

Duration: 10 sessions (over 10 weeks)

Full fee: £249.00
Senior fee: £199.00
Concession: £152.00

Please note: we offer a wide variety of financial support to make courses affordable. For more information visit our online Help Center. You can also visit the Information, Advice and Guidance drop-in service, open from 12 – 6.45, Monday to Friday.