Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Art of the 20th Century: What's Up with all those isms?

Course Title: Art of the 20th Century

Catalog Description

In the 20th century, artists tumbled from one theory to another: Fauvism, Cubism, Orphism, Abstractionism, Expressionism, New Objectivity, Surrealism, Minimalism, etc. It's enough to make your head spin, but it's not that hard to learn to tell them apart if you have a little guidance and abundant examples. Now's the time to learn the difference between Picasso and Matisse, between Salvador Dalí and Rene Magritte. Slideshow presentation combines masterpieces from the museums of modern art in New York, Amsterdam, The Hague, Paris, and Madrid.

Course Proposal

Students will learn broad, general definitions of each of the major art movements of the 20th century, as listed below. Students will develop basic ability to recognize various art movements by viewing many examples and playing guessing games. Students will become familiar with the names of the major painters of the 20th century by hearing them frequently. Detailed memorization is not the objective; the idea is develop curiosity about who is who, perhaps leading to increased attendance of local art museums.

Art Movements of the 20th century

Fauvism, Post-Impressionism, Cubism, Orphism, Abstractionism, Expressionism, Classicism, Primitivism, New Objectivity, Surrealism, Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Op Art.

Major Artists of the 20th century

10 big names: Matisse, Picasso, Braque, Kandinsky, Mondrian, Paul Klee, Fernand Léger, Marc Chagall, René Magritte, Salvador Dalí.

Many other artists will also be introduced, with special emphasis on women artists when their work is available.


Course presentation will take the form of a narrated slide show using instructor's own photos, presented via computer-aided projection. Plenty of time will be allowed for discussion and interpretation. Materials provided by instructor, including ample online access to photos of paintings.


My photos are available at the following website:

20th Century Art

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