A history of French art: from Lascaux to Louise Bourgeois
Weekend art history course
27 January 2024 10am - 5pm28 January 2024 10am - 5pm
Wolfson British Academy Room | Burlington Gardens
£420. Includes light refreshments and a wine reception at the end of day one.
Friends of the RA book first
Join us for a weekend exploring the history of art in France, from prehistoric cave paintings to the births of Impressionism, Modernism and Nouveau Réalisme.
This weekend course takes our exhibition Impressionists on Paper: Degas to Toulouse-Lautrec as its starting point to explore the whole history of French art.
Over two days, this course dives into the rich history of art in France, providing an insight into the birthplace of many of our best-known art movements. Beginning by considering the prehistoric period, we will track the development of Carolingian, Romanesque and Gothic art and architecture, before exploring the emergence of the French Baroque and enduring tradition of Classicism. We will study the Rococo and the influence of the Académie Royale in Paris and then examine art, revolution, and imperialism at the end of the 18th century.
The course looks at the incredible impact of France on modern art, considering the Realism of Gustave Courbet, Henri Matisse’s influence on Fauvism, and the flourishing scene in the 20th century, from Marcel Duchamp to Jean Dubuffet and to Niki de Saint Phalle.
Each session will be led by art historians, auctioneers, curators and experts on French art and history. No prior knowledge is required, but debate and discussion are encouraged.
Minimum age 18. If you have any accessibility needs, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
About the speakers
Dr. Paul G. Bahn F.S.A. was born and raised in Hull, studied archaeology at the University of Cambridge, and did his Ph.D. thesis (1979) on the prehistory of the French Pyrenees. He has held post-doctoral fellowships at Liverpool and London, plus a J. Paul Getty postdoctoral fellowship in the History of Art and the Humanities. He went freelance in the mid-80s, and since then has devoted himself to writing, editing and translating books on archaeology, plus lecturing on archaeological tours. His main research interest is prehistoric art, especially rock art of the world, and most notably Palaeolithic art, as well as Easter Island. He led the team which, at his instigation, searched for and discovered the first Ice Age cave art in Britain in 2003 and 2004.
Dr. Kathryn Brown is a specialist in nineteenth and twentieth-century French art. Her books include Women Readers in French Painting 1870–1890 (2012), Matisse’s Poets: Critical Performance in the Artist’s Book (2017), Henri Matisse (2021) and Dialogues with Degas: Influence and Antagonism in Contemporary Art (2023). Her research has been supported by numerous funders including the Association of Art History, the British Academy, the Independent Social Research Foundation, and the Terra Foundation for American Art. Brown is a Senior Lecturer in Art History at Loughborough University.
Alexander Collins is Curatorial Assistant at the Wallace Collection. Previously, he was Assistant Curator for Portraits of Dogs: From Gainsborough to Hockney and Leverhulme Fellow for the prestigious Riesener Project, in which he researched the furniture of Jean-Henri Riesener and contributed to the Project’s monograph and digital resources. Alexander was also Decorative Arts Curatorial Intern at the Royal Collection.
Professor David Hopkins is Professor Emeritus and Professorial Research Fellow in Art History at the University of Glasgow. His books include: A Companion to Dada and Surrealism (edited, 2016), Virgin Microbe: Essays on Dada (co-edited with Michael White, 2014) and After Modern Art 1945-2017 (2nd edition, 2018). As well as writing widely on twentieth century art and theory he has published extensively on William Blake. His latest books are Dark Toys: Surrealism and the Culture of Childhood (2021) and Contagion, Hygiene and the Avant-Garde (co-edited with Disa Persson, 2023).
Dr. Marika Takanishi Knowles is a Senior Lecturer in Art History at the University of St Andrews, where she studies French art of the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. She is interested in the relationship between art and theatre and more recently, the social world of the marketplace. In 2020, she published her first monograph, Realism and Role-Play: The Human Figure in French Art from Callot to the Brothers Le Nain (University of Delaware Press). A second book, Pierrot and his world: art, theatricality, and the marketplace in France, 1697-1945, will be published by Manchester University Press in late 2023.
Dr. Tom Stammers is associate professor in European cultural history at the university of Durham. His first book, The Purchase of the Past: Collecting Culture in Post-Revolutionary Paris was published by Cambridge University Press in 2020. He continues to publish widely on topics related to the French Revolution, in addition to two new research projects on the cultural politics of the Orleans family and on Jewish collectors and collecting in the early twentieth century.
Dr. Julia Musgrave has a degree in the History of Art from the Courtauld Institute, and a Masters from the University of Glasgow. Her research interests range from the Renaissance to British Modernism. She gained her Ph.D. at the University of York for her work on the involvement of the Bloomsbury Group in the history of the Contemporary Art Society 1910–39. She teaches Art History at the City Literary Institute (City Lit) and is an Arts Society accredited lecturer.
Christopher Lloyd worked in the Department of Western Art in the Ashmolean Museum at the University of Oxford from 1968-1988 combining curatorial duties with teaching. During that time he was appointed by Harvard University to a Fellowship at Villa I Tatti in Florence and was Visiting Research Curator of Early Italian Painting at The Art Institute of Chicago. He was appointed Surveyor of The Queen's Pictures in the Royal Collection in 1988 and retired from that post in 2005. His publications include monographs on painters, catalogues of museum collections and surveys of the Royal Collection, including a television series for Channel 4 in 1992. More recently he has written extensively on drawings by Impressionist and Post-Impressionist artists, particularly Degas, Cezanne and Van Gogh.
Our courses and classes programme
Our varied programme of short courses and classes provides an opportunity to explore subjects ranging from life drawing to the history of exhibitions and arts management, led by expert tutors and practising artists. These courses introduce traditional art-making processes, as well as perspectives on art history, theory and business.
Give this course as a gift
All of our courses can be purchased as a gift for a friend or family member – giving the gift of education and a remarkable experience. To arrange a personalised Gift Voucher, please contact the Academic Programmes Team, by calling 020 7300 5641 or email email@example.com