One of my favourite courses in college many years ago was a course on the History of Modern Painting. The professor was Joseph Ablow. Each week the class gathered in a dark room and Mr. Ablow showed slides, tracing the history of Western Art from 1500 well into the 20th century. This was such a good course, well taught, relaxed, and very enjoyable. It wasn’t about pressure to get a good grade – the purpose was to develop some understanding and appreciation of works of art.
Early last week I wrote about the art programme featuring Andy Warhol and his work. This week the programme shown in the new BBC series on Master Painters featured Henri Matisse, his life and work.
Open window Collioure, 1905 from the internet – a book by Robert Hughes, The Shock of the New
The Wikipedia entry for Matisse makes for fascinating reading and viewing of a selection of his paintings. Possibly the most interesting to me is that according to the Wikipedia entry, Matisse and Picasso first met in the salon of Gertrude Stein and of course her friend Alice B. Toklas.
As a p.s. to this post, I googled for Joseph Ablow and found that he is now Professor Emeritus, Boston University. He is American, was born in 1928, and at Middlebury he was an instructor, just beginning his academic career. I can picture him to this day. Here is one of his own works, dated 1993.