The concept of the Baroque has long fascinated—and incensed—historians, literary critics, and philosophers. Often aligned with an artistic ‘Golden Age’ exemplified by the complex and discomfiting works of Bernini, Rubens, Velázquez, and Vermeer, the Baroque has also been associated with ruinous decadence and excess, irrationality, preciosity, and effeminacy—rhetorically charged notions that can be interpreted in both religious and gendered terms. This course is an investigation of both seventeenth-century European painting, prints, and sculpture and (Neo)Baroque aesthetics as such. Throughout, we will endeavor to identify at least some of the characteristic mentalities, themes, heuristics, and conceits that constitute the representational-epistemological—and certainly, the metaphysical—mechanics of this rich and varied mode or modes of artistic expression. A comparative essay, museum visit/s, and sustained original research will culminate in a research paper and presentation.
Registration for this course will begin on Wednesday, May 17 from 2:00pm – 4:00pm in VAPA B201, and continue on Tuesday, May 23 by appointment only.