Experiences of Art
Reflections on Masterpieces
Experiences of Art: Reflections on Masterpieces is a book that explores themes in the history of art through the insights of students.
Experiences of Art: Reflections on Masterpieces is a book that explores themes in the history of art through the insights of students. The book engages themes such as the origins of creativity in prehistoric art, the meaning and significance of the classical paradigm in art history since antiquity, the actual application of Renaissance art theory to an examination of famous masterpieces, an exploration of a new area of philosophical inquiry that reexamines the 18th century as both a period of rationalism and anti-rationalism (rather than the “Age of Reason”), and the tradition of individual subjectivity and expression in modern art reaching back to van Gogh.
This book is the creative brainchild of an experiment in online learning. From 2008 to 2010, Hilda Werschkul was the sole volunteer to create and teach a two-semester online course for the introduction to the history of art (Perspectives in World Art and Design) that was run as a pilot project at Parsons School of Design The New School University in New York. She wrote each of the lecturettes, which were drawn from the Pearson Stokstad and Cothren Art History textbook (3rd edition). She ran discussion board sessions each week, which were designed around a theme for each period that was set forth in each of the lecturettes. After assessing the course outcome, she first decided to write her own textbook but then rather considered to create a book narrating selected themes in the history of art designed around her students’ quotes from the discussion board sessions because the outcome of the sessions was overwhelmingly fruitful.