Thoughts on Life, Art, Photography, Technology, Teaching and Travel…..
I’ve been teaching art appreciation and art history for over twenty years and I must admit I never get tired of the material. Art has so much incredible emotional and intellectual depth to it – the desire to communicate is an integral part of the human condition since those first prehistoric people began expressing themselves with earth minerals, bits of charcoal and pigments on the walls of the caves of France. This is a subject I am deeply passionate about. It seems I learn something new about art and its amazing history every semester I teach it. In fact, I learn a great deal from my students (in my online courses across the state) who bring so much new and exciting information to our discussion boards.
The one thing we as students of art history must notice as we research the various periods and styles of art. ART is a MIRROR of society and it reflects the issues, concerns, fears, hopes, beliefs, superstitions and agendas of every period in history throughout the world back at us viewing it today.
It is so much more than for decoration. Developing a deeper awareness and understanding of art through the ages gives us insight into the actual history of civilization before the non-objective and abstract art twentieth century because art is essentially a visual journey through time.
There is so much more to art (painting, sculpture, architecture, photography, etc.) than initially meets the eye, and without an understanding of the visual language and the historical context of any given art work we as viewers cannot truly extract all the information (content) out of the work.
Rococo – Neoclassical Art
What continues to fascinate me is how the styles of art change EVOLVE from period to period and region to region. It is as if one art style is responding and reacting to the previous one. Rococo art to Neoclassical is a great example of this powerful reaction of one art style to another
I believe that having a broader understanding and appreciation of art enriches and enhances our lives. To be able to view a great work of art and glean all the intellectual, emotional and cultural content out of it is an exciting and fulfilling experience. It makes a visit to a museum an exciting adventure and unique learning experience rather than a boring stroll through vast galleries of unfamiliar pictures and statues.
Art is NOT just for the rich. It’s NOT just for intellectuals and the elite. Art is for EVERYONE and it only takes a little bit of knowledge, insight and background to truly understand, appreciate and enjoy all types of art from purely representational to the totally abstract.