10 April 2017

I suppose much of urban art has a role of sharing openly and publicly social and political statements through art. Sometimes tributes to “heros”, it comes to my mind the famous Che Guevara’s face in a Ministry’s building in Cuba.

In Portugal there’s a nice mural tribute to one of the capitans of the Revolution of 1974 that was painted at the New University of Lisbon  – Salgueiro Maia mural.

Many political parties’ murals were painted during the revolutionary times in Portugal, one that resisted for many years was by the extinct Movement of Socialist Left

The Mexican muralists painted powerful murals:

Siqueiro’s New Democracy

Siqueiros mexican revolution of Zapata and Pancho Villa 

Rivera’s tribute to the working class in Detroit Murals –

Orozco Dive Bomber and Tank –

Public Art Tours in Lisbon –

Nice examples of Street art –

5 April 2017

Course resources on Art&Society

MoMA publications: books

Paola Antonelli, Jamer Hunt, and Michelle Fisher (eds.), “Million Dollar Blocks,” in Design and Violence. The Museum of Modern Art, 2015. Purchase the full publication at

Deborah Cullen on Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s Untitled (Perfect Lovers) in MoMA at El Museo, 2004. Excerpted in John Elderfield, Ed. Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 458. Purchase the full publication at

Leah Dickerman, Jacob Lawrence: The Migration Series. The Museum of Modern Art, 2015. Purchase the full publication at

Jodi Hauptman, “Jasper Johns,” Picasso to Warhol: Fourteen Modern Masters. The Museum of Modern Art, 2011.

Carolyn Lanchner, Jasper Johns. The Museum of Modern Art, 2009. Purchase the full publication at

Jacob Lawrence, The Great Migration, 1992. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.), Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 216-217. Purchase the full publication at

Robert Storr, “Felix Gonzalez-Torres,” On The Edge: Contemporary Art from the Werner and Elaine Dannheisser Collection, 1997.

Deborah Wye, Kirchner and the Berlin Street. The Museum of Modern Art, 2008. Purchase the full publication at

MoMA publications: articles and online resources

Design and Violence, The Museum of Modern Art

MoMA Learning: Photography as Witness

MoMA Learning: The Photographic Record

One-Way Ticket: Jacob Lawrence, The Museum of Modern Art

Shahzia Sikander: Gods, Griffins and Cowboy Boots, The Museum of Modern Art

Additional reading: articles and online resources

Ross Bleckner, “Felix Gonzalez-Torres,” BOMB magazine, Spring 1995.

Olga Hubard. “Productive Information: Contextual Knowledge in Art Museum Education in Art Education,” 2007, 60 (4), 17-23. © 2007. Used with permission of the National Art Education Association.

Martha Rosler, “Cut and Paste,” New York Times, September 5, 2008.

More about the artists

Dorothea Lange on

Martha Rosler on

Felix Gonzalez-Torres on

Jacob Lawrence on

Jasper Johns on

August Sander on

Shahzia Sikander on and Art21

Michael Rakowitz on

Spatial Information Design Lab on

David Hammons on

Ernst Ludwig Kirchner on

Kerry James Marshall on and Art21

30 March 2017

Art and Sociey is the last theme of the course.

«Many artists create work in response to the social, cultural, and political issues of their time…The introduction video is the place to begin. It focuses on three works of art—an iconic Depression-era photograph by Dorothea Lange; Martha Rosler’s photomontage protest against the Vietnam War; and Felix Gonzalez-Torres’s expression of love and loss through two wall clocks…from Michael Rakowitz’s parasitical and custom-designed homeless shelters to Kerry James Marshall’s quiet painting of a black police officer that encapsulates the complexities of race and policing in 21st-century America»


26 March 2017

The field of technology and art is fascinating and as the media becomes more accessible and affordable, new artists emerge.

In this week the name and work of Jessica Rosenkrantz is presented and I’ve looked for more information in the Internet and watched this conference on her generative design, taking inspiration from nature and its patterns and using programming and 3D printing the products are customized and individualized.

Generative Art reflects in visual and music works – . CGI has developed into very sophisticated effects in film.

Interactive art is another interesting approach and great installations have been produced:

Métamorphy interactive art  

Barbican’s Rain Room  

  Interactive art with wooden mirrors   

  Shrumen Lumen interactive art installation  

25 March 2017

Bic ballpen was invented in the 50’s and still resists in the market. I recall the fountain pen and the mess with the ink. This is a good example of good design and good function.

By the same time Gilette invented the double side razor blade which persisted till the present and became a popular everyday object with a safety function.

There are many useful instruments with great conception and design.

The combination of crafts and arts reached a high standard with Bauhaus – , the german school devoted to design and art with the function feature, an avant-garde school which prospered from 1919 to 1933, till the rise of nazism. Founded by an architect Walter Gropius, Bauhaus nurtured modernism with a function purpose.

Bauhaus had a profound influence upon subsequent developments in art, architecture, graphic design, interior design, industrial design, and typography ( )

It’s amazing how modern it looks Wassily chair designed by Marcel Breuer in the 20’s. Famous names of archietcts and artists are associated with Bauhaus, such as Mies van der Rohe, Kandinsky, Josef Albers, Paul Klee, Moholy-Nagy, and many others who went to exile during nazism.

collage Bauhaus

24 March 2017

Cornelia Parker is a contemporary british sculptor and artist (of Tchechen birth) who also works with found objects and his installation of 1991 Exploded Shed is her iconic work, though she is very ecletic and has very diverse works as seen in this collage:

collagecornelia parker

Her last work Magna Carta is a commission for the British Library to commemorate Magna Carta and it is a collective embroidery made by 200 people invited  to hand-stitch portions of the work including prison inmates, civil rights campaigners, MPs, lawyers, barons and artists, including Julian Assange and Edward Snowdan – 

23 March 2017

Very creative forms of Art can be found nowadays using recycled materials, like south african Mbongeni Buthelezi  who paints with plastic rubish and hot gun

or the amazing Tire Sculptures by Blake Mcfarland –

Art at the Dump: From Trash to Treasure

Another Creative junk artist is Leo Sewell with his intricate metal work

Assemblage Artist – La Wilson

The art of Assemblage (Sotheby TV)

22 March 2017

In line with Duchamp’s readymades is provocative italian artist Piero Manzoni of Arte Povera and his can Artist’s shit (1961) –

Other italian artists in the 60’s and 70’s are protagonists in this movement using poor materials.

21 March 2017

In further readings other contemporary artists are analysed and some are new to me.

I enjoyed particularly the works of Ghana artist El Anatsui – ,  with wood, clay, metal, and the discarded metal caps of liquor bottles… I find interesting this recycling feature of wasted material, with great colourful visual effects.

Technology and art can produce very creative works like the generative design of Jessica Rosenkrantz, programming and 3D printing.

20 March 2017

The theme of topic 4 is «Everyday Object turned into Art» and it starts by giving the example of Duchamps’ Readymades, namely the Bicycle on the Stool, which to me is the predecessor of Kinectic Art. Duchamp was a provocative artist who took several everyday objects and would give poetic names such as The Fountain for a urinal. He dared to shake the concept of Art and quastion what is Art?

collage Duchamp's readymades

Other examples of works of art made of everyday objects are mentioned in the course videos, such as Oppenheim’s Object (1936), fur covered cup – 

Nevelson’s Sky Cathedral (1958), a wall assemblage of many wood pieces and some furniture is another well known work of art, all painted in black –

Raushenberg’s Bed (1955) is also an assemblage of different materials that is a hybrid of painting and sculpture, using found objects such as a bed quilt, pillow case, etc –

The contemporary portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos elected everyday objects to make works of art, such as the use of hygienic tampons to make a huge chandelier (The Bride)  or the use of plastic cutlery to make the huge portuguese traditional earings or the saucepans assemblage to make Marilyn shoes:

collage joana vasconcelos

Week 4 course bibliography:

MoMA publications: books

Carolyn Lanchner. Robert Rauschenberg. The Museum of Modern Art, 2009, 14-17. Purchase the full publication at

Paola Antonelli. “Useful Objects” in Objects of Design from The Museum of Modern Art. The Museum of Modern Art, 2014, 94-121. Purchase the full publication at

Jodi Hauptman, “Marcel Duchamp,” in Picasso to Warhol: Fourteen Modern Masters, 2011, 68-72.

Jenny Holzer on Meret Oppenheim’s Object in Contemporary Art in Context, 1990. Excerpted in John Elderfield, Ed. Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 229. Purchase the full publication at

Leslie Jones on Tom Wesselmann’s Still Life #30 in Pop Art: Selection from The Museum of Modern Art, 1998. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.), Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 388. Purchase the full publication at

Joseph Kosuth on Marcel Duchamp’s Bicycle Wheel in Contemporary Art in Context, 1990. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.), Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 193. Purchase the full publication at

James Leggio on Robert Rauschenberg’s Bed in Essays on Assemblage, 1992. Excerpted in John Elderfield, Ed. Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 318. Purchase the full publication at

MoMA publications: articles and online resources

MoMA Learning: Dada

MoMA Learning: Marcel Duchamp and the Readymade

MoMA Learning: Surrealism

MoMA Learning: Appropriation

MoMA Learning: Design

MoMA Learning: Everyday Marvels

MoMA Audio: Visual Descriptions: Marcel Duchamp, Bicycle Wheel

Additional reading: articles and online resources

John Henningar Shuh, “Teaching Yourself to Teach with Objects,” in The Educational Role of the Museum, 1999.

Meret Oppenheim, Object, Khan Academy

More About The Artists

El Anatusi on and Art21

Décolletage Plastique Design Team on

Marcel Duchamp on

Tomás Gabzdil on

Mike Kelley on and Art21

Louise Nevelson on

Kazuo Kawasaki on

Meret Oppenheim on

Robert Rauschenberg on

Jessica Rosenkrantz, Jesse Louis-Rosenberg on

Doris Salcedo on Art21 and

Tom Wesselmann on

16 March 2017

Thinking about Identity and painters’s studios, I recall 19th century Gustav Courbet’s L’Atelier du Peintre, an allegorical huge painting with all socail strata represented and analysis – 

His own words on the painting:

“It’s the whole world coming to me to be painted”, he declared, “on the right, all the shareholders, by that I mean friends, fellow workers, art lovers. On the left is the other world of everyday life, the masses, wretchedness, poverty, wealth, the exploited and the exploiters, people who make a living from death”.

Jumping in time, Jackson Pollock identity reflect on his paintings, her childhood in Wyoming and travelling around big spaces of America probably had its influence in his big canvas painting on the floor, developing his drip technique. A great socumentary of late 80’s on his life and work

15 March 2017

Searching for brazilian contemporary artists I came across with Vik Muniz –  –  and his amazing collective garbage art initiative. These are extracts of a longer documentary that focus on the garbage pickers who become the assistants and models for the art made with garbage. The documentary won two awards in 2010 at the Sundance Festival and Berlin Festival and it’s a moving testimony of community participation.

Searching other modern and contemporary artists, beyond USA and MoMA, I recalled Remedios Varo, introduced to me by a peer in a previous MOOC and frankly I was surprised with her paintings. So many artists remain in obscurity, deserving much more recognition –

There are very few notorious female painters and she deserves a place for her original paintings, which convey a mystifying strangeness and surrealist feature –

«Renaissance art inspired harmony, tonal nuances, unity, and narrative structure in Varo’s paintings. The allegorical nature of much of Varo’s work especially recalls the paintings of Hieronymus Bosch, and some critics, such as Dean Swinford, have described her art as “postmodern allegory,” much in the tradition of Irrealism. Varo was also influenced by styles as diverse as those of Francisco Goya, El Greco, Picasso, and Braque. While André Breton was a formative influence in her understanding of Surrealism, some of her paintings bear an uncanny resemblance to the Surrealist creations of the modern Greek-born Italian painter Giorgio de Chirico. In Mexico, she was influency by the art precolombino.» (

Remedios Varo-Encuentro-1959

On Kawara is a conceptualist artist referred in the bibliography of the theme «Art&Identity» –

As I didn’t know him I’ve made a few searches and found some videos related to his exhibitions, since he is a very private person and doesn’t show talking about his work

As some of his art is a written expression, like postcards, maps and lists, when I saw the maps it came to my mind the prose-poem «BART» by Ron Silliman, one of the Language Poets, where he describes a journey in San Francisco Metro – 


14 March 2017

José de Almada Negreiros is the iconic master of portuguese modernism of the beginning of the 20th century. He is the main protagonist of the futurist manifesto in Portugal. He is an eclectic and charismatic personality, a great painter who also writes modern poetry – and other literary works – , and for a short period becomes interested in ballet after watching a performance by the Ballets Russes.

Almada futurista

The futurists turned, unfortunately, supporters of fascism and somehow, he also became involved with the régime, with some commissions of works of art for the State. Nontheless, he was a bright intelect and his works deserve all the attention in our art and cultural scene. At this moment, is taken place a retrospective exhibiton on Almada Negreiros at the Gulbenkian Foundation – 

The great panels at the Alcântara Sea Station

Almada painéis

Almada’s works for tapestry

Almada tapeçaria  Almada tapeçaria2

Almada was commissioned a painting to decorate the famous Café Brasileira in Lisbon downtown, which was renovated in the 20’s and was a meeting point of artists, Almada painted himself with a group of intellectual friends at the Café:

Almada Brasileira

Café’s Art Nouveau entrance


Café’s interior

Café_A_Brasileira interior

Almada’s Maternity painting

Almada maternity

Almada’s Fernando Pessoa portrait

Almada Fernando pessoa

His self-portrait graphite drawing and painted self-portrait

almada autoretrato almada auto-retrato pintura

Almada nude

Almada nude

Articles on Almada Negreiros:

13 March 2017

The works that are selected for this course belong to MoMA and the choice of the works is determined by this fact.

I would include in my selection of paintings related to Identity Lucien Freud’s self portraits which I find very expressive and with a strong impact on the viewer –

Lucien Freud reflection-self-portrait-1985

MoMA publications: books

★ Cornelia Butler and Alexandra Schwartz (ed.), “Frida Kahlo” in Modern Women: Women Artists at the Museum of Modern Art, 2010.

★ Christophe Cherix (ed.), “Ellen Gallagher Deluxe” in Print/Out: 20 Years in Print. The Museum of Modern Art, 2012, 110-120.

John Elderfield, Matisse in the Collection of The Museum of Modern Art, 1978. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.), Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 126-127.

James Johnson Sweeney, Marc Chagall, 1946. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.) in Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 122. P

Carolyn Lancher. Andy Warhol, The Museum of Modern Art, 2008, 2-14.Carolyn Lanchner, Henri Matisse, The Museum of Modern Art, 2008.

★ Robert Storr, “On Kawara,” in On The Edge: Contemporary Art from the Werner and Elaine Dannheisser Collection. The Museum of Modern Art, 1997, 72-73.

Ann Temkin and Claire Lehmann, “Bruce Nauman,” in Ileana Sonnabend: Ambassador for the New, 2013, 124-127.

Anne Umland, Picasso: One on One: Girl before a Mirror, The Museum of Modern Art, 2012.

MoMA publications: articles and online resources

★ MoMA Learning: Investigating Identity

MoMA Learning: Pop Art

MoMA Learning: Photography and the Public Image

Teaching Tips: Frida Kahlo, Self-Portrait with Cropped Hair

Teaching Tips: Pablo Picasso, Girl Before a Mirror

Additional reading: books

“Glenn Ligon,” in Joan Rothfuss and Elizabeth Carpenter, Bits & Pieces Put Together to Present a Semblance of a Whole: Walker Art Center Collections, Walker Art Center, 2005, 252-355.

Richard Meyer. “Borrowed Voices: Glenn Ligon and the Force of Language,” Queer Culture.

Additional reading: articles and online resources

★ George Hein. “John Dewey and Museum Education.” Curator: The Museum Journal, 47 [4] 413-427, 2004.

Glenn Ligon audio interivew, Runaways, Whitney Museum of Art

Pop Art, Khan Academy

More about the artists

Marc Chagall on

Ellen Gallagher on and Art21

Frida Kahlo on

Glenn Ligon on and Art21

Pablo Picasso on

Rineke Dijkstra on

Mona Hatoum on

On Kawara on

Henri Matisse on

Bruce Nauman on and Art21

Howardena Pindell on

12 March 2017

Addressing Theme Art&Identity

Some self-portraits and other identity pictures by Frida Khalo, Marc Chagall, Andy Wharhol’s Marilyn, Picasso, Marie Thérese, Henri Matisse’s Studio, Rineka Dijkstra Almerisa portraits.

I would make a few more choices than the ones in the course. I thinks Frida Kahlo is a good choice, because most of her Works were self portraits and my preferred one is Broken Column. Here is my visual on three of her portraits:

Frida Kahlo self portraits

The portrait where she is wearing a man’s suit is a statement after her divorce of Rivera , in which she strips herself from her female attributes, such as her long hair that her husband praised and  her female body shape is disguised in a large men’s suit. Her double self-portrait shows a bleeding heart.

«Symbolic elements frequently possess multiple layers of meaning in Kahlo’s pictures; the recurrent theme of blood represents both metaphysical and physical suffering, gesturing also to the artist’s ambivalent attitude toward accepted notions of womanhood and fertility.» ( )

I’m not a great enthusiast of Pop-Art and Warhol’s iconic compositions on Marylin Monroe, so I’ll just add this link for KhanAcademy review on the painting –

Pablo Picasso’s Girl before a Mirror is a great painting, dated 1932, the canvas is divided in two halves, the real girl and her reflection on an oval mirror, the real girl seems happy, painted with bright colours but her reflection is dark and gloomy. The background is a colourful patrern design that resembles mosaic.

«When you look closely at the image, you can interpret many different symbols within different parts of the painting. The woman’s face for one; is painted with a side profile and a full frontal image. One side shows the day time where she seems more like a woman, dolled up with her make up done. The other side with the rough charcoal texture portrays her at night. When she takes off the mask of makeup, and is more vulnerable as a young lady. One way of interpreting the painting is when the woman looks at herself in the mirror; she is seeing herself as an old woman. From the green discoloration on her forehead, darkening of her facial features to the lines that show that her young body has been distorted, and gravity has taken its rightful place. Another way of viewing the painting is that she is self-conscious, and she sees all the flaws in herself that the world doesn’t see.» (

collage Picasso Girl before the mirror

Video analysis – 

Marc Chagall’s I and the village is a nostalgic painting about his russian birthplace. It’s a modern painting of 1911 that blends the cubist geometric shapes with the figurative and narrative. Two big profiles in front of each other highlight in the canvas, a man and a goat, evoking a dreamlike scene- 

collage Chagall I and the Village

Henri Matisse paints his studio in deep red, in 1911. Fauvism is characterized by strong colours. In spite of the red the painting conveys a quiet and contemplative space where paintings and furniture seem orderly disposed.

collage Matisse Red Studio

11 March 2017

Course readings on Theme  Places&Spaces:

MoMA publications: books

Charles Burchfield, Edward Hopper, 1933 and James Thrall Soby, Contemporary Painters, 1948. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.), Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 215-216. Purchase the full publication at

Richard Thomson. Vincent van Gogh: The Starry Night. The Museum of Modern Art, 2008. Purchase the full publication at

Piet Mondrian, The Museum of Modern Art Bulletin, 1946. Excerpted in John Elderfield, (ed.), Modern Painting and Sculpture: 1880-The Present. The Museum of Modern Art, 2004, 207-208. Purchase the full publication at

Jodi Hauptman, “Piet Mondrian” in Picasso to Warhol: Fourteen Modern Masters, 2011, 58-63.

Laura Hoptman, One on One: Wyeth, Christina’s World, The Museum of Modern Art, 2012.

Ann Temkin and Nora Lawrence. Claude Monet: Water Lilies. The Museum of Modern Art, 2009. Purchase the full publication at

Ann Temkin and Claire Lehmann. “The Bechers,” in Ileana Sonnabend: Ambassador for the New. The Museum of Modern Art. 2013, 108-111. Purchase the full publication at

Robert Storr. “Bernd and Hilla Becher,” in On The Edge: Contemporary Art from the Werner and Elaine Dannheisser Collection. The Museum of Modern Art. 1997.

MoMA publications: articles and online resources

Louis Kahn Educator Guide: Spirituality of Matter

MoMA Learning: Landscapes, Real and Imagined

MoMA Learning: Outside the Museum

MoMA Learning: Maps, Borders and Networks

MoMA Learning: Surrealist Landscapes, Real and Imagined

MoMA Learning: Rise of the Modern City

History of Claude Monet, Water Lilies audio

MoMA Audio: Kids: Vincent van Gogh, The Starry Night

MoMA Audio: Kids: Andrew Wyeth, Christina’s World

MoMA Audio: Kids: Piet Mondrian, Broadway Boogie Woogie

MoMA Audio: Visual Descriptions: Claude Monet, Water Lilies

MoMA Audio: Visual Descriptions: Henri Matisse, Red Studio

MoMA Audio: Visual Descriptions: Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory

MoMA Audio: Visual Descriptions: Piet Mondrian, Broadway Boogie Woogie

MoMA Kids Art Card: Piet Mondrian, Broadway Boogie Woogie

MoMA Kids Art Card: Andrew Wyeth, Christina’s World

Alex Roediger, “A Van Gogh Pilgrimage on the 125th Anniversary of His Death.” Inside/Out.

Additional reading: articles and online resources

Salvador Dali, The Persistence of Memory, Khan Academy

George Hein. “Is Meaning Making Constructivism? Is Constructivism Meaning Making? The Exhibitionist, 1999, 18 (2) 15-18.

Melinda M. Mayer, “Bridging the Theory-Practice Divide in Contemporary Art Museum Education” in Art Education, Vol. 58, No. 2 (March, 2005), pp. 13-17.

Nathaniel Kahn, “Scenes from My Architect,” TED Talk, February 2002.

Gordon Matta-Clark, “Splitting, Bingo/Ninths, Substrait (Underground Dailies),” UbuWeb.

Nicolai Ouroussoff, “Timely Lessons From a Rebel, Who Often Created by Destroying,” New York Times, March 3, 2007.

Ned Smyth, “Gordon Matta-Clark,” Ned Smyth, Artnet, 2004.

John Walsh, “Rachel Whiteread: ‘I’ve done the same thing over and over,'” Independent

Rachel Whiteread, Water Tower, Public Art Fund

More about the artists

Vincent van Gogh on

Piet Mondrian on

Gordon Matta-Clark on

Andrew Wyeth on

Salvador Dalí on

Edward Hopper on

Hippolyte Blancard on

Claude Monet on

Rachel Whiteread on

Bernd and Hilla Becher on

Louis I. Kahn on


10 March 2017

Edward Hopper’s House by the Railroad

collageEdward Hopper House by the Railroad


From Painting to Poem – 

Edward Hirsh poem on the painting expresses much of the mood of the painting

Out here in the exact middle of the day,
This strange, gawky house has the expression
Of someone being stared at, someone holding
His breath underwater, hushed and expectant;

This house is ashamed of itself, ashamed
Of its fantastic mansard rooftop
And its pseudo-Gothic porch, ashamed
of its shoulders and large, awkward hands.

But the man behind the easel is relentless.
He is as brutal as sunlight, and believes
The house must have done something horrible
To the people who once lived here

Because now it is so desperately empty,
It must have done something to the sky
Because the sky, too, is utterly vacant
And devoid of meaning. There are no

Trees or shrubs anywhere–the house
Must have done something against the earth.
All that is present is a single pair of tracks
Straightening into the distance. No trains pass.

Now the stranger returns to this place daily
Until the house begins to suspect
That the man, too, is desolate, desolate
And even ashamed. Soon the house starts

To stare frankly at the man. And somehow
The empty white canvas slowly takes on
The expression of someone who is unnerved,
Someone holding his breath underwater.

And then one day the man simply disappears.
He is a last afternoon shadow moving
Across the tracks, making its way
Through the vast, darkening fields.

This man will paint other abandoned mansions,
And faded cafeteria windows, and poorly lettered
Storefronts on the edges of small towns.
Always they will have this same expression,

The utterly naked look of someone
Being stared at, someone American and gawky.
Someone who is about to be left alone
Again, and can no longer stand it.

Claude Monet’s Water Lilies.

Impressive mural panels, lovely soft peaceful scenery of a pond with lilies that blur light and shade, a precursor of abstract art.

(Somehow, it reminds the later paintings of Turner that reach this abstract feature.)

My visual notes

collage Monet Water Lilies


9 March 2017

Surrealism started as a literary movement, coined by André Breton – – and extended to Painting and Film, with Buñuel.

André Breton defined Surrealism as “psychic automatism in its pure state, by which one proposes to express – verbally, by means of the written word, or in any other manner – the actual functioning of thought.” What Breton is proposing is that artists bypass reason and rationality by accessing their unconscious mind. In practice, these techniques became known as automatism or automatic writing, which allowed artists to forgo conscious thought and embrace chance when creating art. » ( )

Surrealism was much influenced by Freud’s psychoanalysis and the power of Dream

Dali’s painting The Persistence of Memory –

collage Dali Persistence of Memory

Andrew Wyeth, a realist painter

collage Andrew Wyeth

(correction: Wyeth died in 2009)


NY Times on his death at 91 

Louis Kahn, the architect of Bangladesh Parliament

collage Louis Kahn

8 March 2017

The first theme on Places&Spaces adresses 3 works of three different artists: van Gogh’s Starry Night – Mondrian’s Broadway Boogie Woogie – Matta-Clark’s Bingo


collage van Gogh Starry Night

collage Mondrian Broadway Boogie Woogie

collage Matta-Clark

7 March 2017

The Resources of the course have a comprehensive repository of links and videos on Modern/Contemporary Art, which is worth navigating

Newman’s Broken Obelisk

I just came across Newman’s Broken Obelisk and in my search I found this artcle in the Guardian about the work, which was a revelation to me –

Resources of the course:

What is Modern Art? –

Art Glossary –

Tools&Tips (repository of links and videos to art) – 

Everyone’s a critic – 

Theme Machine –

Art Vocabulary –


6 March 2017

The course started on 6 March 2017, in Coursera, and is promoted by MoMA.

«This course is designed to help build critical skills that support theme-based teaching practices and build confidence in incorporating modern and contemporary art into interdisciplinary lesson plans.

By addressing themes and questions that arise in relation to modern and contemporary art, the course will help you to think creatively about links to your curriculum and the ways that you can tap into students’ knowledge and life experience.

In this course, you will explore four themes that educators at The Museum of Modern Art use frequently in their teaching: Places & Spaces, Art & Identity, Transforming Everyday Objects, and Art & Society. Through videos, slideshows, and a variety of resources, readings, and activities, you will explore the content and context of works of art in MoMA’s collection.

Learners will…

– Explore works of modern and contemporary art through a variety of themes that relate to classroom content and student experience.

– Hear directly from artists about their ideas and processes.

– Learn about the ways that a thematic approach supports interdisciplinary teaching and learning.

– Gain exposure to a range of digital resources available for teaching with themes and incorporating content around works of art into your classroom.»