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Open Arts Objects

Open Arts Objects (OAO) is an open access platform which provides over 50 free films to support the teaching of Art History.

Watch this short film outlining the Open Arts Objects project

Open Arts Objects:

  • inspires wider and diverse audiences to enjoy and understand art works and visual culture, leading to a change in museums’ educational programmes and professional practice, and has increased public awareness about a global approach to Art History.
  • supports teachers by providing free open access materials including films, activities for students, and teaching support documents. OAO films are a recommended resources for the new A-level Curriculum by Pearson, covering the themes of Identities, Nature, and War, but they can also be easily adapted to the Cambridge Pre-U. They are an ideal resource for any teacher who incorporates art and design into their teaching.
  • underpinned by the research of members of the Art History department at the Open University, OAO promotes the understanding of art informed by the innovative methodologies of mobility and global approaches.
  • emboldens communities, regional groups, school children, teachers, and OU students with art historical skills, with a mandate to widen participation in Art History.
  • ensures the sustainability of Art History at all teaching levels, advocating for the democratisation of the subject and the decolonisation of the curriculum, and promotes educational opportunity.

We need your help! Our funding and support depends on feedback from you. Please take a few minutes to fill out this very short survey (6 questions, approx. 4 minutes). If you’d like us to visit your school or community group, get in touch: openartsobjects@open.ac.uk.

Partake in our Facebook group and check us out on Instagram and twitter (where every Monday when we post an interesting object/work of art at the start of every week for #materialmondays).

In 2017-18 members of the Open Arts Objects team served as academic consultants for the 9-part BBC series Civilisations produced in partnership with the OU, reaching over 13.7 million viewers. In 2019 OAO was short-listed for the Times Higher Education Awards in the category of Knowledge Exchange/Transfer Initiative of the Year.

Professor Elizabeth McKellar explores the central government building in New Delhi built as the Viceroy’s House, which combined both Indian and European architectural traditions.

Angeliki Lymberopoulou and Rembrandt Duits discussing the term iconography. Includes Giotto, Entry into Jerusalem, Arena chapel; a Byzantine panel painting (icon) of the Virgin and Child; Gianlorenzo Bernini’s sculpture of Apollo and Daphne; Jacob Matham’s engraving of ‘Envy’; Bellini, Madonna of the Meadow.

Susie West and Leah Clark discussing commemoration and how it can be applied to works of art and architecture. Includes war memorials; tomb sculpture; Paul Cummins and Tom Piper, Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red, Tower of London.

Warren Carter and Paul Wood discuss the complex and shifting status of the term modernism from the nineteenth century through to the present.

Warren Carter and Paul Wood discuss the complex relationship between modernism and the avant-garde.

Warren Carter and Paul Wood discuss the complex relationship between modernism and contemporary art.

Emma Barker and Kathleen Christian discuss the term Classicism. 

 

Emily Hannam brings the Mughal court to life in her discussion of paintings from the Padshahnama (‘Book of Emperors’) housed in the Royal Library at Windsor Castle. Learn more about the work with additional resources.

Bryony White (Senior Curator of Modern & Contemporary Art) discussing Bridget Riley, Kashan, 1984, National Museum Wales, Cardiff.

Francesca Leoni (Curator of Islamic Art) discussing a Spanish cylindrical ivory casket (pyxis) lid with huntsmen and animals, 389 in the Islamic calendar, or 998-999, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.

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