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Course Description

If asked to talk about abstract painting—even works we’ve encountered and found engaging—many of us struggle to put what we’d describe as feelings into words. How does an art form that owes part of its place in history to the efforts of so many American artists occupy such an odd place in our culture? This course will start with a historical grounding for looking at abstract painting by examining several stages of its development in the 20th century through a combination of lecture and discussion. As students develop a vocabulary to discuss canonical works, we will explore some contemporary work and consider the state of the art form. Students will also have class time dedicated to experimenting with making nonrepresentational artwork and will have the opportunity to try out their new vocabulary during in-class critiques of their peer's work. | Facilitated discussion; Active participation
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