When folks hear “Art History” certain images come to mind: an old man, sweater vest and tie, talking down to you and also moving at a glacial pace around a museum; an elderly woman, pearls and purple-tinged hair with giant glasses that make her look like an overgrown beetle, hovering over you like a librarian who doesn’t want you touching her precious book-children; the art teacher at your school, who always smells vaguely of marijuana, and keeps a poster of Starry Night on the wall of the classroom; and finally, an artsy college student with a definite air of pretension about them, who can wax poetic about artists and their movements, but looks down on you for enjoying a Batman comic book. These caricatures might be right to some extent–we’ve all definitely met one, or more, of those people in our lives–but art history is not just a stuffy subject you take in high school or at university.
The study and pursuit of art history is a valuable subject, no matter the level of schooling. AH can be tied into English/Literature classes, all History classes (American, World, Ancient, etc), Mathematics, and even Chemistry class to an extent. Learning about not only the artist and the movement(s) they belonged to, AH opens up a world for the student to explore various time periods, and the events of these periods, and can be explained or expressed through the mediums available at that time.
HOWEVER. Art history does not have to be a class for the stand-offish, turtleneck-wearing, too much eyeliner-having, “art freak”. AH is not as unapproachable as you may think, nor is it as pompous. Thankfully, there is now a way to see famous works AND have a good time. I present unto you: Art Memes. I may be late to the game, but for those out there who haven’t seen everything on the Internet, I bestow upon you this hilarious treasure. These classic pieces of art: sculpture, paintings, and illuminated texts, having been transformed into memes, can now expose people to these pieces while being relative to the times we happen to occupy. And they’re just down right fucking hilarious.
This one had me in stitches the other night.
- Side note: James has an appreciation for art but isn’t as..well..enthusiastic as I am; this is one main ways I get him to look at paintings, etc, because James is a big fan of memes. Win/Win really.
Now, I am not encouraging anyone to get out there and actually deface a famous work of art. I am also not saying go into the museum world and mock the art you’re viewing without actually appreciating what it’s worth. Sure, jokes and meme-humor are well and good, but at least take time to bask in the artwork BEFORE you send your buddy a hilarious Snapchat.
Tell me what your favourite Art Meme is!! What’s your favorite artist or art movement? Do you have a painting that you’re utterly obsessed with? Leave me a comment and let’s talk!!