Art & Culture Classes

Virtual Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - The Aesthetic Movement: The Cult of Beauty Revisited (via Zoom)

Saturday, January 30, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Two Saturdays: January 30 and February 6, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $80


In their operetta Patience, Gilbert and Sullivan skewered the Aesthetic movement—the anti-industrial stance adopted by a talented and opinionated group of artists, poets, and architects that had an enormous impact on painting, architecture, interior design, and dress. Closely related to the Arts and Crafts movement, Aestheticism attempted to redefine the relationship between "Fine Arts" and design. An exhibit in 2012, originated by the Victoria and Albert Museum, celebrated the creations of Dante Gabriel Rossetti, James McNeill Whistler, Burne-Jones, Godwin, William Morris, and a host of others. Let's educate ourselves about the philosophy, interaction, and production of these creative geniuses. We look at paintings, sculpture, furniture, household objects, and houses—and read some poetry.

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.

 

Virtual Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - Discover Jordan Beyond Petra (via Zoom)

Saturday, February 13, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Two Saturdays: February 13th and 20th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $80


The Nabatean city of Petra is indeed worth a trip to Jordan, but let's not miss the country's other spectacular sights. Our virtual journey takes us to Umayyad caliphs' desert castles with astonishing frescoes; the huge, well-preserved Roman city of Jerash; Mount Nebo and the city of Madaba, famous for its map of the Near East; and a score of other treasures such as Umm ar Rasas, where the floors of Byzantine era St. Stephen and other churches are covered with perhaps the best mosaics extant. We will visit the ancient city of Philadelphia—now Amman—its citadel, great temple, and museum. A day in the ancient city of al Salt with its lovely Ottoman architecture, and a night in a Bedouin camp in Wadi Rum, complete this fascinating experience—unless we have the urge to spend a day on the beach of Aqaba or bobbing about on the Dead Sea. The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan welcomes us! 

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.

 

Virtual Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - The Battle Between Cross and Crescent: The Danube (via Zoom)

Saturday, February 27, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Two Saturdays: February 27th and March 6th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $80


Visitors to cities on the Danube are captivated by their architecture, music, and ambience. Not always peaceful, there were periods beginning with the Battle of Mohacs that brought the Hungarian Kingdom under Ottoman rule: the Siege of Vienna by Suleyman the Magnificent in 1526, and another siege by Kara Mustapha in 1623. (Ottoman occupation introduced paprika, coffee houses, and bath houses.) We will meet the major actors in this drama from Alexander the Great, the Romans, and others, and learn what was so important about the Danube that flows from the Black Forest in Germany to the Black Sea. We visit Passau, Linz, Vienna, Bratislava, Budapest, Belgrade, and a few surprises.

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.

 

Virtual Class: Art History with Kerrin Meis - Timeless Tunisia (via Zoom)

Saturday, March 13, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm

Two Saturdays: March 13th and 20th, 2021

Hosted via Zoom • Live • 1:00-3:00pm PT • $80


Join art historian Kerrin Meis on a virtual tour of this tiny jewel of the Maghreb. Across from Italy on the northern shores of Africa—sandwiched between the Mediterranean and the Sahara desert—Tunisia, for centuries, was the center of the world’s evolving history. For over 600 years Romans traveled through it, preceded by the Phoenicians and followed by the Byzantines, Arabs, Ottomans, and the French—all of whom left visible and fascinating marks. Through brilliant slides and informed commentary, discover the remains of these cultures: the world’s finest Roman mosaics, the site of ancient Carthage, underground villas, and the spectacular amphitheatre at el Djem. Marvel at lush oases, fortified granaries, hilltop Berber villages, and some of the scenery that so enchanted the directors of Star Wars and The English Patient. Tunisia is especially rich in Islamic architecture: the great mosque at Kairouan, the medina of Tunis, and more. The Arab Spring was most successful in Tunisia, making it an excellent country to visit.

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.