Art History A Level (2)

I have been trying to remember more about what it was like doing Art History A Level.   We did a General Paper, of which I only recollect one question in the mock exam, which was what art should be hung in hospitals, a question which I have puzzled over ever sense.   The meat of the exam was a special subject paper on Art in Italy 140o-150o.   We were introduced week by week to all the major fifteenth-century artists beginning with Masaccio and ending with Leonardo, encouraged to read Freud.   The subject was treated as an aspect of cultural history without a great deal of analysis of the art, but this was a symptom of the interests of our teacher, who I’m not absolutely convinced had been to Italy (he was passionate about medieval Spain).   At the time, art history was a new and adventurous subject, expanding in the universities, and we were able to attend extramural classes in the local library by a lecturer from Bristol.   It definitely expanded my intellectual and cultural horizons and I remain grateful to have been able to do it at that stage, rather than having to wait to do it as an undergraduate.


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