This course explores how the visual arts communicate through form in a given context by focusing on the question, “Why do humans create art?” Thematic topics examine art from around the world, beginning with Paleolithic cave painting in Spain and France and continuing across time and geography to the present moment. Class discussion will address a set of ideas presented in the syllabus readings, with special attention to issues in regions on the voyage itinerary. Assignments and activities will develop students’ critical- and creative-thinking skills, writing ability, and speaking skills through case studies and on-site observation. At the end of the course, students should be able to identify and discuss major architectural monuments and works of art in global historical context, and to articulate verbally and in writing the larger cultural, social, political, economic and philosophical factors that compelled humans around the world and throughout time to produce art.
Field ClassCountry: Spain
Date: September 15, 2017
Experience concepts of urban space activated by architectural design, including sacred and secular contexts. Experience the effects of Ildefons Cerdà’s “Barcelona Plan” through a walking seminar in the Barri Gótic, El Raval, and L’Eixample hosted by architectural specialists. Experience the texture of the city’s open spaces and public infrastructure as staged by architectural means. Converse with locals about their experience of the city as a built environment and its impact on their perception of life in Barcelona. Test your awareness of activated space on location in Antoni Gaudí’s Basílica de Sagrada Família.
1. Appraise concepts of activated space impacted by architectural design, including sacred and secular contexts.
2. Interrogate the texture of the city’s open spaces and infrastructure as staged by architectural means.
3. Evaluate the impact of urban design schemes on perceptions of quality of life in Barcelona by comparing the character of neighborhoods or districts such as the Barri Gótic, El Raval, and L’Eixample.