HYBRID PROGRAM: IN-PERSON AND STREAMING ONLINE
An Art History of Materials II
Kerr Houston, professor of art history, theory and criticism, Maryland Institute College of Art
The history of modernism is in one sense a history of materials: industrial mass production, colonialism and global networks of exchange, modern chemistry and influential theories of medium specificity, all combined to yield a new array of artistic materials and new ways of thinking about how and why materials matter in the production and consumption of art. This lecture, the second in a series of three, will concentrate largely on evolving attitudes towards materials in 19th and 20th century Europe and the United States, noting the central importance of materiality in modernist theory and feminist art. But it will also consider several alternatives, in the form of Congolese sculptures and Chinese performance art – hopefully yielding, in the process, a sense of some of the ways in which matter mattered in the 1800s and 1900s.
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