In Europe, as elsewhere, the eighteenth century was a period of innovation and profound cultural transformation. The years between the 1690s and the French Revolution of 1789 saw the emergence of new styles and genres in painting and new ways of making and understanding art, while media like drawing and printmaking achieved a new-found prominence. We explore this art through the work of painters like Watteau, Chardin, Hogarth, Reynolds, and Gainsborough and sculptors like Falconet, Roubiliac, and Houdon. While concentrating on Britain, France, and their colonies, we also examine the international culture of the court in Italy, the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and parts of Northern Europe. We also look at the eighteenth-century interior, emphasizing its social function as a context for the display of fine and decorative arts and its role within a nexus of global trade, exploration, and exploitation.
Assessment: 100% coursework.