Category Archives: Discussion Topic

Discussion Topic: Art History Parodies

It’s been a strange semester with the stop-and-go calendar in the beginning of Fall 2012 and NYC’s shutdown over Hurricane Sandy.¬† Thank you all for your contributions on the class blog and for staying committed to your coursework to the … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: Unpacking Picasso’s Les Demoiselles D’Avignon

Pablo Picasso‚Äôs Les Demoiselles D‚ÄôAvignon is a masterpiece of western art in the collection at MoMA. Some have suggested Picasso‚Äôs painting is the most important work in Modern Art. Picasso executed over a hundred sketches and preparatory studies before completing … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: Impossible Exhibitions, The Caravaggio Show

In Italy, there is a trend to launch “Impossible Exhibitions‚ÄĚ for renowned artists, such as Raphael, Leonard, and Caravaggio. In these exhibitions, all the works of art produced by one artist are assembled together in a museum setting. Unfortunately, it … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: The Art of Food

Happy Thanksgiving! It seems appropriate that we think about food this week, and the idea of food as art.¬† There is a long history of photographing food for commercial purposes.¬† The following NPR article outlines a current evolution in food … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: Documenting Hurricane Sandy

I am borrowing this Discussion Topic from my History of Photography course as a venue to contribute your own “storm stories” or your reactions to coverage on Hurricane Sandy. Those with power during the storm and its aftermath were inundated … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: Virtual Michelangelo

Michelangelo painted the Sistine Ceiling in four years, 1508-1512.¬† Read below an excerpt of Michelangelo‚Äôs biography by Giorgio Vasari (1511-1574), the first art¬†historian. ¬†Visit the Sistine Chapel with the modern art historians of SmartHistory.org in Second Life, a virtual environment.¬† … Continue reading

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Masaccio’s Illusionism

With the help of his friend Filippo Brunelleschi, Masaccio is often identified as the first artist to apply theories of linear perspective to painting.¬† His perspectival masterpiece is the¬†Holy Trinity¬†in the church of Santa Maria Novella in Florence. ¬†Watch the … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: Pilgrimages Then and Now

The Pilgrimage Route to Santiago de Compostela in Spain was important to the religious, economic, and cultural development of the later Middle Ages. According to the 12th-century Pilgrim‚Äôs Guide, people traditionally followed one of four routes through France to visit … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: A Medieval Monastery Rises in the 21st Century

This week you will explore a plan from the 9th¬†century for a monastery. The St. Gall monastery plan incorporated a vision of an ideal monastic environment for monks who followed the Rule of St. Benedict. Consider the daily life of … Continue reading

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Discussion Topic: How Evil was Commodus?

You may have heard of the gladiator-obsessed Roman Emperor Commodus (reign 180-192 AD) made infamous in the movie¬†Gladiator. Read sections 9-11 of the¬†Life of Commodus¬†in Lampridius’s biography¬†Historia Augusta. Write a 100-word interpretation of the Roman portrait bust of Commodus as … Continue reading

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