The History of Art Pre-U introduces students to a wide range of works of art in many media and from many different cultures. This does not mean just learning about a list of masterpieces but rather making connections between art, ideas, cultural contexts and broad themes. This is a very cross-curricular subject that encourages students to transcend artificial boundaries. It is designed to open their minds to the vast array of art treasures throughout the world that might otherwise be inaccessible to them.
The History of Art Pre-U gives students an opportunity to study film, photography, drawing and printmaking as well as painting, architecture and sculpture and thus a very enriching programme of study. It is also possible to pursue big ideas and themes over extended periods and across different regions. Students are able to analyse non-European art and relate this to the western tradition.
Over two years, students will have the chance to study the "Old Masters" of the Seventeenth Century, including Rembrandt, Vermeer, Velasquez, Bernini and Caravaggio. The great movements of the Twentieth Century will also be analysed, such as Cubism, Fauvism and Surrealism. Russian experimental cinema and architecture in totalitarian regimes are among the other topics offered, as is the relationship between European art and the cultures of Africa and Asia.
The course offers an excellent preparation for university life and for a range of careers within the arts and beyond. Most importantly, however, it helps to enrich the lives of those who choose to study the subject.