Landscape and Genre Painting in America, 1820 - 1860
Spring 2008 not offered
The course considers landscape and genre painting within the framework of American culture from, roughly, the Jacksonian and antebellum periods. We will investigate the ideological dimensions of these works and consider how they contributed to the construction of a 19th-century American national identity. We will explore how landscape painting relates to the rise of industrialization and the growth of the American city; the rising political tensions leading up to the Civil War; the interrelationship between art and science; the moral, spiritual, and social dimensions of American nature; the pastoral ideal and the concept of the wilderness; the myth and reality of the frontier; and the ideologies of Manifest Destiny and Jacksonian democracy. We will explore the stylistic and ideological dimensions of landscape in the art of Thomas Cole; Hudson River School painters such as Frederic Edwin Church and Asher B. Durand; and luminist painters such as John Frederick Kensett and Martin Johnson Heade. We examine the construction of American identity in depictions of everyday life by genre painters such as William Sidney Mount, Richard Woodville, and Lilly Martin Spencer. We will consider how these artists' images of a variety of Americans inform our ideas abut gender, race, class, and regional types of the pre-Civil War period.
|Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Lecture / Discussion
|Grading Mode: Graded
|Fulfills a Major Requirement for: None