To me this was the most interesting CTS session so far, I’ve always been interested in history plus the psychology behind people’s actions.
In the lecture in small groups we made a list of what we thought to be the 10 most important artists of all time. For someone who hasn’t really studied art before it was hard for me to think of just the classic names most people know of, so I listened to people in my group. I knew what the result was going to be of this exercise from the beginning which was once we had correlated all of our results, we all gave expected names. Such as Picasso and Da Vinci. And talking about the reasons why I completely agreed. Nearly all the names were White Western Men, and I thought that was because that is the history we are taught in the UK plus I assume around the world. Because it is connected to our own personal national art History. Also the institutions and the galleries now and in the past seem to show the same artists over and over again.
Also we have been affect by colonialism including slavery because the western world had an image in their heads they were better and more important than everywhere else and wanted to show of their own “excellence” to show their own strength to the world. Then after colonialism I feel that we wouldn’t want to admit to our own mistakes by expressing interest in the art from the countries they invaded. I thought this would be such an interesting topic to explore and research more for my more extended essay.
When we split into our groups in the seminar, we were given an article, and my group was given an article on Picasso and how he was inspired by African art and does that mean he deserves the credit for creating Cubism.
In the Western world we seem to depict Picasso as the creator and inventor of Cubism when in fact he was heavily inspired by African art which had the same qualities however didn’t have the name Cubism. Picasso was actively inspired by this and made it influence his work. However by the institutions, galleries are the society this was actively ignored, and I think this is due to colonialism as this was still era when Europe seemed to be divided the world between them, even if it was towards the end. They didn’t want to draw light to the countries they stole. But also they had the thought that these countries were uncivilised and barbarian and wasn’t worth the publicity.
The author of the article seems very passive aggressive and instead of blaming society of the time he specifically targeted Picasso. Using derogatory and Patronising language. However I think this is because he is a black man who grow up in Alabama and I assume has a family history of slavery. He has sat point to prove, and he is attacking a well loved artist to gain publicity for his views.