British Art of the 20th Century

Ref: C3742862

The course will begin with a review of art made in Britain that was inspired by the innovations of the avant garde in France, with particular emphasis on art colonies in Scotland and Cornwall. Experimental modern art groups in London working out of the Slade school will be investigated along with an thorough review of the effects of the Great War on British artists. Further innovations between the wars, and the revolutionary ideas of British Pop Art and experimental art after WWII will be investigated thoroughly. Artists such as James Guthrie, Jacob Epstein, Stanley Spencer, Paul Nash, Frances Bacon, Barbara Hepworth, David Hockney, Lucien Freud and the YBAs in the 1990s will all be covered in this course

Course aim

This course will introduce students to the developments in art created in Britain or by British artists at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th centuries, with a view to better understanding the British contribution to modernism.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • No skills or experience needed

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

  • Identify works by Walter Richard Sickert.
  • Identify art made to commemorate or describe World War 1.
  • Begin to discuss the British contribution to modernism in art in the 20th Century.

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

What else do I need to know?

  • Nothing else is needed

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

  • Not compulsory, but Frances Spalding's British Art Since 1900 is a useful starting point.

What can I do next?

  • Progress to another WEA course

Download full course information sheet

British Art of the 20th Century


As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you book. Please could we ask that you check the list below to ensure you meet our basic criteria:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2018
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

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