I enjoy it when classes give me a new outlook in life. I am not saying that seminar changed my perspective on life or anything to that extent but it changed the way I see art, again. Last seminar, I realized that I should examine a work of art as a whole, not just the centerpiece (thanks to the Mona Lisa). This seminar, it was clear that factoring social status is significant when gazing at art.
One thing I took out of this class was the idea of social class in art. In order to fully understand this aspect of art, the class examined a photograph of Robert De Niro in a highly recognized event. The actor had multiple features worth talking about, including a fuzzy beard. The fuzzy beard displayed that the actor was not well groomed. However, the fact that he had this beard showed power; someone with as much recognition as Robert De Niro can show up at a formal event and be accepted with a fuzzy beard. I honestly cannot believe how much of an impact that photograph had on me. Every time I see someone famous on television or the internet, I try to see how they display power. The one that hit me the quickest was Lady Gaga, I saw her in a abnormal outfit on a Facebook page and thought, “only she could pull this off.”
The rest of class was a discussion of Edward Hopper’s art collection. I do not want to sound ignorant but I did not enjoy most of the collection. The only painting I liked was “Night Shadows” because it made me feel like I was stalking the person in the picture. There was one painting in his collection we did not get to talk about yet but I hope it intrigues me, at least as much as “Night Shadows.”
As long as I can take one little thing from a class I can be content. Socioeconomics is more relevant in art than I thought and I am glad I see that.