Day School: British Landscape Views of India

Ref: C3741684

Indian landscapes, often including major architectural sites, were an important subject for numerous British artists, professional and amateur, during the time of empire. Looking principally at the period from the mid-eighteenth to the late-nineteenth century, we shall consider the place of their work in a broader historical context and the issues facing artists from one culture engaged in portraying scenes from another. What aesthetic approaches did they adopt? What was the impact of such material back in Britain? Was it instrumental in supporting, or even creating, the attitudes which underpinned European imperialism, as some recent theorists have suggested?

Course aim

To consider, within a broader historical context, the ways in which British colonial artists depicted landscape and architectural scenes in India through painting, prints and photographs.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

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

  • Look at examples of art from this field and comment on them in discussion.
  • Situate relevant artworks within a broader historical context.
  • Explain some of the ways in which this art shed light on and shaped political and social attitudes of the period.

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?

  • there will be informal verbal feedback as appropriate

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • No preparatory reading is required. Some initial suggestions for general reading include: Mildred Archer and Ronald Lightbown, India Observed (1982) John E. Crowley, chapter on ‘India’ in Imperial Landscapes (2011)

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course
  • Become involved as a volunteer for a WEA partner or another organisation

Download full Course information sheet

Day School: British Landscape Views of India


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  • 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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