Enduring Appeal: Looking at the Painting of Modern Life

In conjunction with Monet to Dali: Modern Masters from the Cleveland Museum of Art join Dorothy Barenscott for a lecture on how late 19th century artists gave visual shape and dimension to the myths and spectacles of urban modernity, while simultaneously addressing the promise of newness and transformation that the modern age promised.

Looking at the works of the Impressionists and other late 19th century avant-garde European artists, Dorothy argues that their work is more consumable and perhaps “readable” today than in the moment of initial conception, when emerging groups of radical artists sought to capture and tell stories about the new contexts of the modernizing fin de siecle world around them. Why is this? What are the themes that continue to resonate in the present moment? These will be the questions explored in a talk which raises a number of productive tensions revealed in late 19th century European painting.

Dorothy Barenscott is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory at the University of British Columbia and has recently been appointed as a Visiting Assistant Professor in the Department of Art at the University of Lethbridge. Dorothy has an interest in the emergence of urban modernity in the context of European visual art and culture, and her publication record reflects these interests with examinations of painted panoramas, early cinema, modern architecture, and conceptual photography. She has presented her work internationally, and lectured on visual art and theory at UBC and Simon Fraser University. Dorothy holds a doctoral fellowship with the Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada and is a past recipient of the Simons Foundation Doctoral Scholarship.