Art 528

ART 528: Twentieth-Century Art

Credit Hours: (3)

Study of the development of the visual arts of the 20th century emphasizing chronological evolution, themes and visual forms.


Description of the Content of the Course

The course is designed for upper level art students and as a humanities elective for students in other majors. It fulfills a General Education requirement. Course material begins with the origins of modern in the late nineteenth century and concludes with recent developments in contemporary art history. Emphasis is on painting and sculpture and the introduction and influence of new styles, philosophies and technology during the last century. The changing role of the artists and definitions of art will also be addressed.

The course covers the following material:

  • Late Post-Impressionism
  • Art Nouveau
  • Expressionism
  • Cubism
  • Futurism
  • Dada
  • Abstract Expressionism
  • Pop Art
  • Minimalism
  • New Realism
  • Post-Modernism
  • Et al.


Description of the Conduct of the Course

This is a lecture course, but class participation in the analysis of works of art is encouraged. Slides of the art under discussion will be projected onto a large screen to provide all students with a clear visual image of each work of art. An occasional film will be shown to allow a more in-depth study of a specific topic.

Students are expected to attend class. By accepting admission to Radford University, each student makes a commitment to understand, support, and abide by the University Honor Code without compromise or exception. Violations of academic integrity will not be tolerated. This class will be conducted strict observance of the Honor Code. Students are referred to the Student Handbook for details.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

At the conclusion of this course, the students will be able to:

1. discuss characteristics of Western art and civilization of the 20th century.
2. analyze a work of art with regard to style and iconography.
3. use the necessary vocabulary and basic concepts associated with the study of art history in discussion and writing.
4. recognize the basic stylistic characteristics of the art in the various periods and in specific works of art.
5. identify major artists and works of art of the 20 th century.
6. define the role of art and artists within the cultural, political, and sociological context of the 20 th century.


Assessment Measures

The final grade is based upon a series of tests/quizzes, an oral presentation and a short research paper. Additional short responsive writings and attendance at outside lectures may also be required. There are no make-ups. If the student does not take a quiz or exam, or give a presentation, he or she will receive a grade of zero. The midterm and final exam will consist of slide identification, short answer, multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, and one or more essay questions on a single work of art or a comparison of two works of art.


Other Course Information

There are no extra credit options for this course.

Students are encouraged and might be required to attend openings of the Flossie Martin Gallery of Radford University and see contemporary works of art exhibited there and in the sculpture court. Students are also encouraged to take advantage of exhibitions of contemporary art in museums and galleries in the region (Virginia Tech, Roanoke College, Roanoke Museum of Fine Arts, etc.)

If the student has a learning disability recognized by the Disabled Student Services Office at Radford University, he or she should advise the professor of the nature of the disability during the first week of class.

Tape recording of class lectures is not permitted unless the student has a learning disability recognized by Radford University and the professor receives a formal request from the Disabled Student Services Office. At his or her discretion, the professor may allow tape recording under other special circumstances.


Review and Approval

March 1999 Revision Arthur Jones, Chair