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Topic one: Post-Impressionism
The Post-Impressionists were a much less cohesive group than even the Impressionists were. Although we typically characterize them as “responding” to the Impressionists and Realists, their use of color and spirituality were often even at odds with each other. We typically group them together, however, because of their pressing on the boundaries of color. They seem to have used color for its emotional and psychological effects rather than to reflect the natural world. Their use of color expands representation and expression. What do you find most compelling about the Post-Impressionists? What do you think they have in common with each other and what do you think distinguishes them from one another? What do you think their impact on modernism will be?
Topic two: Arts and Crafts, Art Nouveau, and the Beginnings of Expressionism
At the beginning of the 20th century, artists in Europe started questioning the role industrialization and mechanization played in the production of the visual arts.
Read the following essay on The Arts and Crafts Movement (Links to an external site.) and discuss what you think the successes and failures of the movement were. Do you see any references to previous art movements? What has been the legacy of the Arts and Crafts Movement? In what ways do you think craftsmanship is, or is not, important to the production of visual arts?
Furthermore, Art Nouveau built on many of the same principles as the Arts and Crafts Movement. Look through these architectural designs (Links to an external site.) and discuss what you think architects associated with Art Nouveau were trying to accomplish.