ARTS1975E: THE FAMILY PORTRAIT
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This course explores the family portrait as an embodiment, reflection, and testing ground of key social, familial, psychological, political, and artistic concepts across history. We will look closely at portraits of families and family groupings in various media – from painting, sculpture and textiles to photography, prints and caricatures – and from across diverse cultures – from ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome to modern and contemporary Europe, Asia and America. Some questions we will consider: What are the origins of the family portrait? What motivated artists and patrons to capture families in art? How do family portraits differ from culture to culture, from era to era? How do personal portraits of family vividly reflect social and political issues in the public realm? How are contemporary artists and photographers influenced by the legacy of family portraiture? How are family portraits changing and what will they look like in the future? In addition to readings and class discussion, we will engage the topic through at least two visits to local museums, where we will see family portraits of various types in person!
Wisse, Jacob. (2022, Spring), Syllabus, ARTS1975E: THE FAMILY PORTRAIT, Stern College for Women, Yeshiva University.