Who were the Pre-Raphaelites and why were they considered radical? Why did the Romantics revolt against the industrial Age of Enlightenment, and why was Picasso’s influence on early British Modern Art so strong even though he only visited London sparingly? The answer lies in the course “Understanding Art through London’s Collections” which takes you on a cultural journey through modern and contemporary art from its inception in the late 19th century up to the present day.

London houses some of the world’s most famous modern artworks and is one of the major international centers for art so where better to tread the pavements of London’s artistic collective - the Bloomsbury Group - than in the city they critiqued? Where better to study why Cezanne is considered the ‘father of modern art’ than by visiting the Courtauld Gallery to discover his paintings that influenced the likes of Matisse and Picasso. And let’s not forget that London houses the largest collection of Turners in the world!

Let London become your study canvas to explore the plethora of modern genres housed in its artistic landscape, making weekly visits to museums and galleries where you critically analyze the cross-fertilization between art and society.

Learn how each era in art reflects society’s notion of beauty and challenges its stereotypes; and how today the young British artists such as Damien Hirst and Tracy Emin are also commentators, a construct, and an influence on modern society.



 This course will be conducted in the classroom and at many of London’s museums and galleries including:

  • Tate Britain and Tate Modern
  • National Gallery, London
  • Hayward Gallery

“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.” Andy Warhol



 Understanding Art Through London’s Collections

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