Dutch Art History
Full course description
The course is about Dutch art – with an emphasis on painting. Ever since the Middle Ages the Netherlands has played a pivotal role in the history of European art and culture. Dutch and Flemish artists were the first to use oil paints, the first to visually document the lives and cultures of ordinary people, and the first to produce art for a free market. Painters such as Van Eyck, Brueghel, Bosch, Rubens, Vermeer, Rembrandt, Van Gogh and Mondriaan are counted among the great masters of history. Their art embodies qualities that are believed to be typical for the country, such as a devotion to truthfulness, attention to detail, and love of textures. But there were many more artists whose works are still considered among the most important in history – if only because they were the first to notice the mundane things nobody else had paid attention to, such as the beauty of a still-life or the wonders of a cloudy sky. From the late Middle Ages through the Renaissance and the Baroque to the modern era, Dutch artists have tried to come to terms with ever-changing principles and conceptions regarding the world around them and have been constantly improving techniques to visualize it. The results of their efforts are the subject of this course.
The course will mostly follow a chronological order. In the first lecture the (religious) significance of art in the Middle Ages, the Renaissance and the Baroque will be introduced. In the following lectures you will be given an overview of the development of Dutch art from the Middle Ages to the modern era. The course will include tours to various museums in Amsterdam, the Hague or Arnhem to view the original works.
Disclaimer: trips and visits related to the course are conditional. E.g. Dutch travel advice should be positive regarding the region that will be visited and institutions should be able to accept visitors. In case a proposed trip or visit cannot continue due to circumstances, alternatives may be organized.
This course consists of 32 class hours divided over 7-8 weeks. Students earn 6 ECTS credits when they obtain a passing grade. Students who need more credits can sign up for the extended course format, which includes an Independent Study Project (ISP) worth an additional 3 ECTS. The maximum number of credits that can be obtained is 9 ECTS.
By the end of the course students will demonstrate the ability to:
▪ Identify and apply (some of) the key concepts in Art History
▪ Recognise the development of art from the Middle Ages to the present
▪ Understand the possible cultural ideas and ideals behind works of art
▪ Understand the significance of art in history
▪ Have a basic idea of the main discussions within Dutch art history
▪ Write and talk about art in a clear and comprehensible manner
▪ Reconstruct the original context and significance of works of art
▪ Have a (more) professional view on art as a whole
None. A minimum of 9 students is required for the class to take place.
Students will receive an extensive reader with electronic articles via the online Student portal