Why Art History Matters

The importance of Art History as a discipline that continuously asks new questions about society, challenges preconceptions around race and gender, and offers a window into the past, cannot be taken lightly. Indeed, it might be a complex subject, but shouldn’t that be the reason to study it? To provide our future generations with new ways of seeing the world?

Next week and beyond, the Art History department at the Open University will be showcasing some of the ways that Art History matters. You’ll have the opportunity to hear a range of voices from alumni, OU academics, & current students to artists, A-level students, and other practitioners. This will come in a variety of forms, from a social media campaign on twitter & Instagram to blogs here on Open Arts Extra.

We’d love to hear from you, so if you have a story to tell that you’d like shared, tag us on social media, and if you’d like to write a blog for us, get in touch with us: openartsobjects@open.ac.uk! Have our open access resources changed the way you think about the world around you? Have our modules been life changing? or have our films provided you new insight into works of art you thought you knew well? If you’re a teacher, have our free teaching resources helped you in your teaching? Whatever it is, we’d like to hear from you!

So a little more about the #whyarthistorymatters campaign:

In autumn 2016, when Art History was removed from the A-level curriculum (temporarily), a campaign was started, utilising the hashtag #whyarthistorymatters. The responses were overwhelming from key academics in the field such as Craig Clunas (Oxford) and Griselda Pollock (Leeds) to Turner Prize artists such as Cornelia Parker and Jeremy Deller, as well as individuals who had taken the subject at A-level or at university and whose lives had been profoundly changed by Art History. While Pearson rose to the task of providing the new qualification with a new global spec and the Association For Art History (formerly AAH) has long been committed to promoting the value of art history and visual culture, we feel that Art History still needs to be recognised as an essential skill in today’s world. The importance of Art History as a discipline that continuously asks new questions about society, challenges preconceptions around race and gender, and offers a window into the past, cannot be taken lightly. Indeed, it might be a complex subject, but shouldn’t that be the reason to study it? To provide our future generations with new ways of seeing the world?

Open Arts Objects, is a project that provides free open access films and teaching materials to support the teaching of Art History at A-level as well as to teach the general public on how to look closely at a wide range of works of art

It is why we have been working hard on Open Arts Objects, a project that provides free open access films and teaching materials to support the teaching of Art History at A-level as well as to teach the general public on how to look closely at a wide range of works of art. This project is part of the current strategy within the Open University to develop a series of public facing initiatives that can help inspire wider and diverse constituencies to enjoy and understand art works and visual culture.

To increase awareness and to widen participation in the discipline, we’ve been creating a series of short films on why art history matters. We’ve asked a wide range of people including academics, curators, teachers, educators, artists, students, and alumni to consider in a single sentence why art history is important to them. We hope that this will also encourage the public to start making their own short films and sharing them on social media (and please do tag us so we can share too!)

Stay tuned for more and follow us on social media!

Why does it matter to you?

The Open Arts Objects team, The Open University

#whyarthistorymatters #openartsobjects #ouarthistory #OUrArtHistory #wahm

Open Arts Objects 

Facebook: Open Arts Objects

Instagram: openartsobjects

twitter: @openartsarchive

 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *