Friday lates: art, war and creativity
Time: 18:00 - 20:00
This course will be delivered online. See the ‘What is the course about?’ section in course details for more information.
Course Code: VB691
Duration: 1 session
What is the course about?
Artists play an important role in documenting history. No matter how personally expressive an artwork may seem, it is still a reflection of historical context. The importance of artistic documentation was not lost on the British government at the start of World War II. In 1939 the Ministry of Information developed the War Artists’ Advisory Committee to record the war for the purposes of propaganda and history.
In this Friday evening talk we will explore the first major challenge faced by London-based artists during World War II, The Blitz. Working in war, these artists risked their lives and were forced to create art under conditions of devastating human tragedy. After developing a context for their artistic output, our session will explore ideas of creativity, fact and expression by looking closely at the Blitz-related art of Lee Miller, Henry Moore and Graham Southerland. Ultimately, we will discuss the importance of artistic interpretation as documentary evidence.
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.
We will contact you with joining instructions before your course starts.
What will we cover?
• Context of the Blitz, London and the War Artists’ Advisory Committee
• Henry Moore’s Shelter Sketchbook and the creative interrogation of human tragedy
• Lee Miller’s surreal photojournalism and critical humour
• Graham Southerland constructing destruction.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
• Describe the role of British artists during the Blitz
• Describe, in general, the war art of the three major artists discussed in the course
• Discuss the importance of art as historical documentation.
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 with slide presentations and group discussion.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
You might wish to bring a notebook. You might wish to buy some of the books on any reading list given out in class.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Our Friday Lates series runs in the autumn and spring terms - search 'Friday lates' to find more...
Sarah Jaffray received her BA and MA in Art History with an emphasis in French Modernism and a minor in the Italian Renaissance. She holds a second MA in Cultural Studies from Goldsmiths, University of London. Sarah was a lecturer for several colleges and universities in the Los Angeles area before relocating to London to be with her family. For the past three years she has worked as an educator in the Department of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum and at Wellcome Collection. Her interests include Modernism, drawing, artistic process, collaboration, cultural theory, and the intersection of art and technology. She is currently researching the relationship of language and drawing.
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.