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“The Spiritual in Modern Art”, an 8-week course with EarthDiverse

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$85 – $105

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Artmakers Trust

2 Seddon Road

Hamilton, Waikato 3240

New Zealand

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This series of 8 talks examines how the dimension of the spiritual exhibits itself in the secular art of the 19th & 20th centuries.

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THE SPIRITUAL IN MODERN ART

Day & time: Wednesdays from 11:00am-1:00pm. First class meets Wednesday 17 February 2021 and continues for 8 consecutive weekly sessions. The last class is on Wednesday 7 April 2021.

Location: Hamilton, or on-line distance learning.

Course Outline:

This series of eight talks, in our new Art and Architecture series, examines how the dimension of the spiritual exhibits itself in the secular art of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

  • Week 1: Impressionism to Post Impressionism: From Monet to Munch, the latter half of the nineteenth century saw artists reject the long tradition of realism and begin experimenting with new forms of expression. The new language of art may have been shocking and radical, but often these were just different vehicles for giving voice to old spiritual and transcendent ideas.
  • Week 2: German Expressionism: At the turn of the twentieth century, two slightly different German art movements developed further the new emerging expressionist style. One called itself, The Bridge, the other The Blue Rider. Both these innovative and revolutionary art movements had a strong social and mystical focus which attempted to address and respond to the growing spiritual decline in a modern post-Darwinian world.
  • Week 3: Fauvism, Futurism, Orphism, Rayonism: This collection of movements had, as its focus, colour, (often non-representational), light, and a dynamism of abstract forms. Underlying these formal preoccupations were often some kind of vague metaphysical quest, romantic in nature if sometimes misplaced.
  • Week 4: Kandinsky, Mondrian, Russian Abstraction: Abstract art came of age with this group of artists. At base, except for the Constructivists, the movement was deeply aligned with a spiritual mission. Indeed Kandinsky wrote a whole book on the subject to explain the theory behind his art, entitled, Concerning the Spiritual in Art (1912).
  • Week 5: Dada: This art movement was the most radical one to emerge during the war years (1914 – 18) and its influence has reverberated down the decades. It was essentially nihilistic and anticlerical, but at its core, despite all its negations and protest, was a desire to give birth to a civilization worthy of the name.
  • Week 6: Surrealism: What many fail to realize is that this art movement found its impetus in a quasi-religious impulse. Its founder, Andre Breton, was enamoured by things of an occultist nature. Indeed the earliest manifestations of the surreal in art, by Giorgio De Chirico, were labelled, “metaphysical” paintings.
  • Week 7: Abstract Expressionism, POP art: These are two antithetical art movements, the former usually associated with a desire to express deeply felt emotion, often of a spiritual nature, while the latter is frequently perceived as entirely secular. However, looking a little closer, this simple duality breaks down at a certain point. They both exemplify spiritual flirtations.
  • Week 8: Modern Art in New Zealand: While New Zealand artists tend to cry shy of the spiritual in their art, some of our seminal practitioners in the business, from Colin McCahon to Shane Cotton, have made it the hub of their focus. Even someone as secular as Dick Frizzell has dabbled in the dimension.

PREREQUISITES: There are no prerequisites for this course.

DISTANCE-LEARNING: This course has distance-learning options for those unable to attend the live class sessions in Hamilton. Students have three options for attending our courses once they have registered:

  1. attend in-person classes in our Hamilton classrooms at the regularly scheduled day and time,
  2. attend our live on-line classroom sessions via Zoom at the regular scheduled day and time,
  3. watch the live-recorded class sessions at your leisure, at a time, day and place more suited to your schedule.

These options can be mixed and matched throughout the course to suit your own availability and location.

INSTRUCTOR: Peter Dornauf (MA, Dip Tchg) has taught in secondary schools, Wintec and Waikato University collectively for over 25 years. He is a well know Waikato artist, art critic and a writer of poetry, fiction and non-fiction. His book “Days of Our Deaths” serves as the basis for one of Peter’s other popular EarthDiverse courses, A “Cultural History of Death.” Peter is also developing additional courses for future Terms.


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Location

Artmakers Trust

2 Seddon Road

Hamilton, Waikato 3240

New Zealand

View Map

Refund Policy

Contact the organiser to request a refund.

Eventbrite's fee is nonrefundable.

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