Designers and Makers: Artistic Identity in the Decorative Arts
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Level: Graduate
Division: Parsons The New School for Design
Department: Art/Design Hist & Theory
Course Number: PGHT 5719
Course Format: Lecture
Location: NYC campus
Permission Required: No
  • Art History, Theory & Criticism
  • Design History, Theory & Criticism
  • Research Methods
In the Renaissance, designers and makers emerged from the largely anonymous guild system as specific artistic personalities. Raphael and Dürer, the goldsmith Gerard Loyet and the tapestry producer Pieter van Aelst, among others, chose to specialize in particular styles, techniques, or types of objects to claim their work as their own and even began signing that work. Social status changed for these artists as many moved into prestigious positions as valued art advisors, financiers, and court ambassadors. The concept of artistic identity in the decorative arts will be explored in this course. The heritage of the guilds, the work of particular designers and makers, and the strategies they used to identify their work will be investigated, as will the place of designers, makers, and their work: how did these artists see themselves and how did others perceive them? Structured as a seminar, this course will use readings and discussion to introduce these issues. The focus of the class, however, will be on student research, resulting in a presentation and major research paper. Emphasis will be placed on the Early Modern Period (15th-17th centuries), although topics falling outside this timeframe may also be considered.
Open to: All university graduate degree students.
Course Open to: Degree Students


Open to Graduate students.