This course investigates one of the foundational paradoxes of Western painting: that the obviously fictional representation of three dimensions on a two-dimensional surface was assigned truth status. Over the course of the semester we will examine how questions of truth and fiction have been negotiated in writings on art and aesthetics since the late eighteenth century to the present. Despite the fact that art is known to be founded on illusionism, theorists and critics have consistently asserted that it had a relationship to reality, but they defined this relationship in radically different ways. Some found art's reality to reside in its embeddedness in a given cultural moment, others in its relationship to spiritual constants. Some have located art's claim to authenticity in its truth to its materials or medium, while others have found art's claim to truth to center on its critique of dominant values and institutions, and so on. We will begin by sampling a wide range of methodologies. After surveying different approaches, students will be asked to select one aspect of art historical interpretation which they will pursue in an independent research project.
COURSE FORMAT: Seminar
Level: UGRD Credit: 1 Gen Ed Area Dept: HA ART Grading Mode: Graded
Prerequisites: NONE Links to Web Resources For This Course.
Last Updated on MAR-30-2006
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