Art History Classes

Fall 2020 registration for Adult Studio School, Art History, and Lectures begins August 3 for VMFA members and August 10 for non-members. Please browse the Classes & Programs brochure below.

Browse the Fall 2020 Classes and Programs Catalog

In preparation for attending Art History programs, please view the current safety and cleaning protocols below.

Fall Classes: Art History Safety & Cleaning Protocols

VMFA Art History Classes provide adult audiences with the opportunity to investigate the history of art through dynamic and interactive lectures, gallery visits and discussions. For ages 16 and over.


[56] Egyptian Revivalism, 1800–1940

Thu, Jan 7, 14, 21, 28, 1–2:30 pm (4 sessions) | Online
DR. CHARLES BROWNELL, Professor Emeritus, Virginia Commonwealth University

From ancient Greece and Rome to modern Richmond, Egypt has inspired and invigorated art of the Western world at different intervals. This course focuses on the most intense decades of influence, which spanned the Age of Napoleon to the days of Art Déco, with special attention to works in the VMFA collection and public art and architecture in Richmond.

$95 (VMFA members $80)


[57] The Golden Age: Dutch Painting in the Age of Rembrandt and Vermeer

Wed, Mar 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 & Apr 7, 2–3 pm (6 sessions) | Online
DR. DONALD SCHRADER, Adjunct Professor of Art History, University of Mary Washington

The idea of a Golden Age—de gouden Eeuwe— was never applied more aptly than to the stupendous re-invention of the art of painting that took place in seventeenth-century northern Netherlands. There was little patronage from state or religious sources; instead, art was made by and large for private individuals eager to celebrate the freedom and prosperity of their newly independent, forward-thinking country. It was an age in which giants, like Rembrandt and Vermeer, were recognized in their own time, and whose greatness was more remarkable because of the matchless, even miraculous virtuosity of the other painters of the day. In this series we will examine the works of these two extraordinary artists, and the deep resonance and meaning shared among their works and the works of other painters of this astonishing, truly golden age.

$95 (VMFA members $80)


[58] American Landscape Painting and the Natural Bridge of Virginia

Tue, Mar 9 & 16, 1–2:30 pm (2 sessions) | Online
DR. CHRISTOPHER OLIVER, Assistant Curator of American Art and exhibition curator, VMFA

Virginia Arcadia: The Natural Bridge in American Art explores the significance of one the most frequently depicted sites in nineteenth-century landscape painting. This course considers the history of American artists who painted the new nation’s landscapes, from its colonial origins through the Hudson River School, and why the Natural Bridge held special
significance.

$50 (VMFA members $45)


[59] American Landscape Painting and the Natural Bridge of Virginia

Thu, Mar 11 & 18, 6–7:30 pm (2 sessions) | Online
DR. CHRISTOPHER OLIVER, Assistant Curator of American Art and exhibition curator, VMFA

Virginia Arcadia: The Natural Bridge in American Art explores the significance of one the most frequently depicted sites in nineteenth-century landscape painting. This course considers the history of American artists who painted the new nation’s landscapes, from its colonial origins through the Hudson River School, and why the Natural Bridge held special
significance.

$50 (VMFA members $45)


[60] Thomas Jefferson in Italy

Thu, Apr 8, 15, 22 & 29, 1–2:30 pm (4 sessions) | Online
DR. CRAIG REYNOLDS, Chief Administrative Officer and Curator, Capitol Square Preservation Council, Virginia State Capitol

In 1787, Thomas Jefferson toured northern Italy, visiting the areas around Turin, Milan, and Genoa. This culturally and historically rich region exposed Jefferson to unparalleled art and architecture, a unique agricultural lifestyle, and promise for trade and cultural exchange between Virginia and Italy. This class will explore this tour and the lasting Italian influences Jefferson helped transplant to Virginia.

$90 (VMFA members $75)


[61] Native American Art of the VMFA

Tue, May 11, 1–2:30 pm (1 session) | Online
DR. JOANNA MINICH, Assistant Curator of Native American Art, VMFA

This class provides a brief history of VMFA’s Native American art collection and the collecting strategy for the future. In the next year, the department will focus on two areas: the art of Virginia’s Native people and Indigenous women artists. The class will cover the history of Virginia Native arts and look at key works that have been added to the collection in recent
months.

$25 (VMFA members $20)


[62] Native American Art of the VMFA

Thu, May 13, 6–7:30 pm (1 session) | Online
DR. JOANNA MINICH, Assistant Curator of Native American Art, VMFA

This class provides a brief history of VMFA’s Native American art collection and the collecting strategy for the future. In the next year, the department will focus on two areas: the art of Virginia’s Native people and Indigenous women artists. The class will cover the history of Virginia Native arts and look at key works that have been added to the collection in recent
months.

$25 (VMFA members $20)