Gauguin Then and Now: Art, Myth, and Controversy


An examination of the art and career of Paul Gauguin (1848-1903) and the artistic, social, and political milieu of colonialism in which he worked in France, Polynesia, and the Caribbean. Topics include avant-garde Impressionist and Symbolist cultures, the power of the art market/dealer system, the artist's writings (in translation), French colonial culture and pervasive myths of island paradise, and the pressing critiques offered today by postcolonial and feminist theory. The final third of the course will focus on the varied global reception of his work in the 20th and 21st centuries, and controversies over his art, writings and legacies, particularly among contemporary Pacific Islander artists, and artists of color. We will consult local museum collections as possible, and perhaps take a class field trip to Chicago to see essential collections. Prerequisite: L01 215 (Intro to Modern Art), or any 300-level course in art history, or permission of instructor.
Course Attributes: FA AH; EN H; AS HUM; GF AH; FA HUM; AR HUM; AH MEA