What is the course about?
In this course we will look at a short but important period in art history, starting from the aftermath of the First World War, and then stepping into the Berlin music halls of the 1920s and the modernist Bauhaus School of Art. We will explore the lives and works of artists such as Otto Dix, Kathe Kollwitz, George Grosz, Kurt Schwitters and Paul Klee, as well as movements such as Dada, Surrealism and New Objectivity.
We will also consider the emergence of new artistic forms such as film and photography including the work of August Sander and Fritz Lang, and the ideas of writers such as Walter Benjamin. Finally we will review the conditions which created such diverse artistic culture as well as the rise of Nazism which ended it so abruptly.
This course is structured around lectures and class discussions exploring relevant concepts and historical questions. The course includes a gallery visit.
What will we cover?
• Key artworks and artists during the Weimar Republic
• The development of movements such as Dada, Surrealism and New Objectivity
• Key institutions and places such as the Bauhaus School and Berlin
• The relationship of art and artists to the cultural and social contexts of the period.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
• Have better awareness of the key artistic movements of Weimar Republic Germany
• Have a better understanding of the importance and influence of new art forms on the wider cultural landscape of the 20th century
• Show a greater knowledge of the key artists, themes and developments of the period.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This course is suitable for all levels.
You should be able to follow simple written and verbal instructions, demonstrations, hand-outs and health and safety information, and will be invited to take part in group discussion.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
You will be taught with slide presentations, group discussions, short group exercises and a guided gallery visit.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
You might wish to buy books to support your learning, but this is not a requirement. You might want to bring a notebook. Please note we are unable to guarantee stools in the art galleries that we will visit so you might have to stand and to walk between paintings. Any gallery visits will be free.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You might also be interested in:
VB475 - 20th century German art.
General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details