Art & Culture Classes

Online Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - Matisse and Picasso: Masters of Modernism

Saturday, May 8, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm


Two Saturdays: May 8th and 15th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $85


Often seen as opposing influences in a new direction for art in the Western World, these two artists, both rebels, used highly disparate but equally important means to forge a new way of seeing and representing their worlds.  Matisse, a serene Frenchman, happily married, and Picasso, a flamboyant Spaniard and womanizer, need to be studied side by side and with attention to their childhoods, their early works, their early collectors, their dealers, their critics, and their legacy. We will study their contemporaries as well and note how their experiments with Fauvism (Matisse) and Cubism (Picasso) spawned developments in France, Italy, Germany, Russia, and the USA. Of special interest are their late works involving not painting but in the case of Picasso, creating pottery vessels and in the case of Matisse, cutting up pieces of colored paper! We will meet collectors like the Steins of San Francisco, Shchukin in Russia, dealers Ambrose Vollard and Daniel Kahnweiler, and some obstreperous Americans.

Kerrin Meis taught art history at SFSU for ten years and has led study tours in Europe. Her Book Passage classes have been favorites for years.

 

Online Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - Mexico City: The Vibrant Capital of Our Neighbor to the South

Saturday, May 22, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm


Saturday, May 22nd, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $45


Join art historian Kerrin Meis on a virtual tour of one of her favorite spots in the world: the vibrant capital of our neighbor to the South with its fascinating architecture, lovely parks, and more art museums than any other city in North America. While the casual tourist may concentrate on the delectable food and exciting nightlife, we will enjoy immersing ourselves in the cultures that have left their mark here — from Aztecs, Maya, Olmecs, to the Spanish colonialists, to the somewhat misguided French, to its Revolutionaries and independence.

We begin in the Centro Historico (a UNESCO site): The Zocalo, a huge gathering place; the Templo Mayor, remainder of the religious center of the Aztec people; the National Cathedral built over three centuries—the oldest and largest in the Americas; the exquisite National Palace with its Diego Rivera mural of the History of Mexico on the staircase; and the nearby Ministry of Education Building with Rivera's best known murals.

Other highlights include the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe; Chapultepec Castle, housing the National History Museum in the former home of the Emperor Maximilian and his wife Carlota, located in the 1600 acre Chapultepec Park; churches and buildings in out of the way neighborhoods; the Paseo de la Reforma; the House of Tiles, now a restaurant with murals by Orozco; and the unbelievable number of top rate museums — from the famous Museum of Anthropology and the superb Palace of Fine Arts, to the enormous modernist Soumaya Museum, the Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo Studio Museum, the Dolores Olmedo Museum, the Franz Mayer Museum, and the soon-to-be opened Casa Leonora Carrington. Vamos!

Kerrin Meis taught art history at SFSU for ten years and has led study tours in Europe. Her Book Passage classes have been favorites for years.

 

Online Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - Discover Mexico

Saturday, June 5, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm


Saturday, June 5th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $45


Beyond its gorgeous beach resorts, there is much to discover in Mexico. We visit cities renowned for splendid architecture of several ages, mural cycles by famous artists, regional museums dedicated to the country's  history and culture, Spanish missions, and Mayan ruins. Highlights include: Guadalajara, including the work of Jose Clemente Orozco; Guanahuato, the country's most picturesque colonial city; Morelia, burgeoning with European style buildings; Puebla, home to indigenous people and the most spectacular Day of the Dead celebrations; Merida, the White City; Cuernavaca, where Mexico's first Saint is buried; Taxco, the silver city; Oaxaca, especially interesting for its nearby ruins and textiles; and Loreto in Baja California Sur. Learn about regional festivals, time-resistant legends, dining experiences, and out of the way places to get lost!

Kerrin Meis taught art history at SFSU for ten years and has led study tours in Europe. Her Book Passage classes have been favorites for years.

 

Online Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - Convivencia: Toledo — City of Three Cultures

Saturday, June 12, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm


Saturday, June 12th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $45


Spectacularly sited, Toledo is blessed with important vestiges of her role as the spiritual capital of Spain: Two exquisite and historically important Synagogues, a Sephardic Museum, the intriguing Mosque de la Luz, an Arab fortress, the Gothic Cathedral's virtual gallery of paintings and its famous Transparente, San Roman church housing a Visigothic museum (Francisco de San Roman was, interestingly, the first Protestant to be burned at the stake in Spain.) El Greco is everywhere: in several churches, his house/museum, the Tavera hospital, and the Museum of Santa Cruz. Visit the spectacular Monastery of San Juan de los Reyes and study Mozarabic book illustrations created in nearby monasteries. In this time of disquieting xenophobia, it is enlightening to reflect on the possibilities of tolerance, and we will learn about the cooperation among the scholars of Toledo's School of Translators.

Kerrin Meis taught art history at SFSU for ten years and has led study tours in Europe. Her Book Passage classes have been favorites for years.