'An Art History Miscellany'

Ref: C2523263

This Art History course presents the basics of understanding and interpretation or "reading" of paintings, illustrated by the works of selected European artists from the thirteenth to the sixteenth centuries. The topics in art which will be explored include: symbolism; saints; courtesans; witchcraft; medieval medicine; and classical mythology. The work of artists including Giotto, Filippo Lippi, Titian, Raphael and Hieronymus Bosch will be examined and discussed by the group, aided by the tutor.

Course aim

This is a 10-week course for those who are interested in European Art History. It includes the basics of understanding and interpretation or "reading" of paintings, using the work of selected artists from the later Middle Ages and Renaissance.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed
  • This course is suitable for beginners and improvers

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • demonstrate a basic working knowledge of the broad historical context within which European art and culture developed 1250-1600;
  • have an appreciation of the context and relevance of the course topics within the main flows of European culture 1250-1600;
  • apply my knowledge and skills to comment relevantly and take an active part in individual and group discussions;
  • appreciate the use and assess the value of art historical and textual sources in order to achieve a balanced opinion and understanding of art media;
  • use and assess the value of electronic sources as well as primary and secondary sources.

How will I be taught?

  • The WEA tutor will use a range of different teaching and learning methods and encourage you and the group to be actively involved in your learning

What kind of feedback can I expect?

  • A range of informal activities will be used by the tutor to see what you are learning which may include quizzes, question and answer, small projects and discussion
  • You will have opportunities to discuss your progress with your tutor

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed
  • It would be helpful if you had access to the internet (Mobile phone, tablet or computer at home or through a library etc.)
  • Printed hand-out materials will be provided where appropriate. A notebook would be useful to record points, questions and comments not covered in the hand-out material.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading is required but research on the subject on the internet or in the library may be helpful
  • Dictionaries on art and artists, and symbolism would be useful reference texts for home and class use and follow-up.

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • This course could lead to a range of job opportunities. Follow link to National Careers Service for more details https://nationalcareersservice.direct.gov.uk/
  • You could progress to Higher Education courses. Follow link to the PEARL website for information http://pearl.open.ac.uk/

Download full course outline

'An Art History Miscellany' Course Outline


You can if you meet all of the following requirements:

  • are paying the standard fee or are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • are paying with a credit/debit card or are not paying a fee because of a qualifying benefit
  • have a valid email address
  • have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2017
  • have read and accept the standard terms and conditions
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