The Top Ten Great Paintings in Context

Ref: C3671293

Each session will examine in detail a specific painting by a particular artist. The artists will come from a range of genres, styles, backgrounds and periods. Students will be encouraged to learn how to read a painting and discuss their reactions with others. The painting will then be placed in the context of other works by the artist to see how typical it is and if themes are repeated. There will also be an examination of the life of the artist and the events of the society in which they lived. In the workshop sessions other artists will be examined to see if the artist influenced other contemporary or later artists.

Course aim

To examine the work of 10 artists from across the world looking at different styles, subjects and place these in the context of the artists and their world.

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:

  • Become more confident and able to appreciate a painting by an unknown artist
  • Become comfortable sharing ideas and opinions with others in a group setting
  • Be able to visit art galleries, exhibitions to explore the work of unfamiliar artists

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
  • You may be asked to undertake additional work in your own time to support 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

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No pre reading or pre course work is required

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Progress to a course with another provider
  • Become involved with the WEA in a range of voluntary work and other activities including campaigning as a WEA member
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation

Download full course outline

The Top Ten Great Paintings in Context 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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