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Online Class: History of Modern Design

Online / Art in Context

Fridays, October 8 – October 29, 12 – 2pm


Erich Consemüller. "Bauhaus-Scene," Frau mit Bühnenmaske (detail), 1926. Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin. © 2021 Stephan Consemüller

$220; members $198
(4 classes)

Art in Context courses connect works of art to history: What was happening politically, socially, and culturally at the time a piece was made? How did these circumstances shape the artist’s formal choices?

About the Class

This course traces significant moments in the history of modern design (furniture, interiors, household items, products, and graphics) through close examination of objects and texts from the mid-1800s to the 1980s. We will explore innovations in design from the Victorian era—including the use of wallpapers later discovered to be poisonous!—moving through art nouveau, Bauhaus, art deco, modernism and postmodernism. What were the aesthetic and philosophical principles behind each of these movements, and who were the major practitioners? What materials (glass, steel, plastic) were popular at different moments in history, and why?

More about online classes.


Erich Consemüller. "Bauhaus-Scene," Frau mit Bühnenmaske, 1926. Bauhaus-Archiv Berlin. © 2021 Stephan Consemüller


Heather Moqtaderi

Moqtaderi is a design history instructor at Drexel University and the University of Pennsylvania. She is the director and curator of Past Present Projects, where she organizes contemporary art installations at historic sites. She received her MA from the University of Delaware’s Winterthur Program.