We want our students to develop their interpretive and analytical skills through first hand experiences with art. One of the core modules for students in their first year is History of Art and Interpretation. In addition to developing their skills as art historians, this also helps prepare students for their time in Venice in the second year.
Across four visits to Waddesdon Manor, students work with the curators there to consider art objects in their context, fostering an awareness of the relationship between art and its physical and historical contexts.
Waddesdon Manor is a Neo-Renaissance style country house built for Baron Ferdinand de' Rothschild in the 1870's. The Rothschilds were some of the greatest collectors of the 19th Century, and as such the house is rich with fine paintings by Gainsborough and Reynolds, and an enormous collection of 18th-century French decorative arts. Waddesdon is an excellent place for students to learn how to look at art objects and interpret them in context, conveying this verbally and in writing.