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Learner Reviews & Feedback for In the Studio: Postwar Abstract Painting by The Museum of Modern Art

1,360 ratings

About the Course

Want to know how some of the 20th century’s most celebrated artists made abstract paintings? This course offers an in-depth, hands-on look at the materials, techniques, and thinking of seven New York School artists, including Willem de Kooning, Yayoi Kusama, Agnes Martin, Barnett Newman, Jackson Pollock, Ad Reinhardt, and Mark Rothko. Through studio demonstrations and gallery walkthroughs, you’ll form a deeper understanding of what a studio practice means and how ideas develop from close looking, and you’ll gain a sensitivity to the physical qualities of paint. Readings and other resources will round out your understanding, providing broader cultural, intellectual, and historical context about the decades after World War II, when these artists were active. The works of art you will explore in this course may also serve as points of departure to make your own abstract paintings. You may choose to participate in the studio exercises, for which you are invited to post images of your own paintings to the discussion boards, or you may choose to complete the course through its quizzes and written assessments only. Learners who wish to participate in the optional studio exercises may need to purchase art supplies. A list of suggested materials is included in the first module. Learning Objectives: Learn about the materials, techniques, and approaches of seven New York School artists who made abstract paintings. Trace the development of each artist’s work and studio practice in relation to broader cultural, intellectual, and historical contexts in the decades after World War II. Hone your visual analysis skills. Use each artist’s works as a point of departure for making your own abstract paintings....

Top reviews


May 22, 2021

Excellent. The course was very educational, extremely well put together and Corey´s instruction was excellent. One really needed to put time and effort into it but is worth every second of time spend.


Jul 25, 2020

Beyond my expectations! Encouraged by in studio where I discovered I could be successful experimenting with all the different artists. The knowledge, insight, and fascinating experience was joyous!

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26 - 50 of 595 Reviews for In the Studio: Postwar Abstract Painting

By Brian G

Jun 27, 2020

I am 70 years old and I have been an engineer all my life. I recently bacame intersted in art and, by enrolling on a couple of MoMA courses have achieved a whole new outlook which is giving me great interest and excitement. Corey is wonderful.......his knowledge and attention to detail are astonishing making everything so natural and easy. I don't have much basic talent but I now have a range of basic techniques that allow me to persue this wonderful lifestyle. Many thanks indeed.

By Sue H

Jul 7, 2020

This course was the best one I have taken. It offers an interesting mix of artists. Corey does a great job with the in studio explanations of how the artists painted, what they used and how they went about completing their paintings. Each artist we studied was connected to the other, yet they all had their own style. It has helped me as an artist in opening up the more abstract part of my brain, and allowed me to trust and explore the whole creative process.

By Anita N

May 23, 2021

Excellent. The course was very educational, extremely well put together and Corey´s instruction was excellent. One really needed to put time and effort into it but is worth every second of time spend.

By Michael A

Apr 17, 2021

Cory D'Auguestine is so adept in both his analysis and executions in the studio. I wish there were more courses like this. Cory Introduced working in the manner of artists that I always admired.

By Claire L

Aug 11, 2021

This course was a wonderful experience, way beyond what I had originally expected and hoped for. As a nervous novice, hoping to learn some fundamentals about painting, I wasn’t originally that interested in the academic material. But Corey was a terrific teacher with clear, interesting material presented in compelling pieces - in just the right doses. To my surprise, I LOVED the academic material on the various artists and this served as the perfect entree to trying out some painting techniques for abstract work. The course was beautifully organized and, except for the confusing final project submission, the website was user-friendly and extremely well-designed. The studio exercises were fantastic. I experimented with many of the projects and will do those I haven’t yet finished in the aftermath. THANK YOU for the awesome introduction to painting. I feel inspired to continue painting, I learned SO much about abstract expressionism, and I’m DYING to get to MOMA the next time I’m in NYC.

One of the best classes I’ve ever taken.

By simon b

Sep 26, 2020

Corey is a very knowledgeable leader of this course, transitioning easily from introducing an artist's body of work, to the theory, on to the practical and then a review of some of their major works. His effortless style was infectious and made me want the course to not end! The encouragement he gave was excellent and it inspired me to submit 6 of the 8 challenge paintings, which actually helped me in my studio practice too as it forced me to spend more time in the studio, and I managed to complete some 12 other works of art over the same period.

I also learned the context between the artists at this period in time and there were so many additional resources for me to follow up on (which I have).

This is a thoroughly enjoyable and entertain course as well as being educational. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants insight to these artists. Even if you don't know or like some of them, at the end of the course you will understand and appreciate all of them.

By Jan M

Jun 13, 2017

I have always loved the NY abstract expressionists therefore this course gave me the opportunity to learn and appreciate these painters in so much more detail. Also, learning how these artists painted and practicing their techniques has helped me build a much stronger connection to this vital transitional art movement, as well as the artists intentions and concepts. Each artist of study was unique. I really enjoyed our presenter and teacher Cory. He explained everything really well with such conviction. I also enjoyed how the course was set up with information from different sources, recommendations and then the chance to comment and discuss with other course members. As soon as I know I was at the end of the cause, I found myself looking for another one. This is my first online course and I am very happy and inspired to do another one on painters that includes studio practice.

By John E P

Feb 15, 2021

I thoroughly enjoyed the course which ranks very high in the list of courses I have taken. I have not painted in many years (since High School) but now that I am retired I can spend more time on my hobbies which now include painting in my room above the garage (No more technical project management - yippee!). This is my first painting course and Corey was extremely helpful. I tried to submit a painting for every week without forcing it. I got to like the artists and I find myself educating others on the new artists that were presented. I feel I can take my family deeper into the challenges that these artists took not only with their pieces but also with their struggle for recognition. I have hung all my efforts on the wall and I am now working on my own style of abstract paintings. Thank you all and thanks to the MoMA curators for their interesting presentations. I will visit ASAP!

By Deleted A

Jun 4, 2020

I took this course during the Covid-19 pandemic as a way to keep stimulated in my artist journey. I now have a greater appreciation and understanding of the fine artist's covered in the course. How to look at a painting with more meaning and, as to how it was created. The best part I have to say, is watching Corey's tutorials as he painted in the style of the artist's process. Being a tactile leaner, this was much more engaging.

Corey D'Augstine makes this course interesting and his narrations are stimulating. Great job!

I have leaned & grown with my own painting process as a result of taking the course. It challenged me to try new creative ideas, such as working with oils. As a result, I am now attempting to pursue oil paint going forward.

Thank you MoMA for offering this course during such a crisis. Art is an essential way that touches everyone.

Susan H.

By Christina B

Jul 9, 2020

I have studied Modern Art many years ago with Open University in the UK and it changed my life in respect of appreciating modern art. This was the perfect course to introduce me to more American Postwar artists. The course was brilliantly presented, THANK YOU Corey A for a splendid and interesting course. I am now keen to get to NYC and planning a trip for 2021 to follow up on the artists I have discovered including Wyeth, not covered, but would have never 'met' him without Coursera. I do not paint but I make collage our of fabrics so the use of colour, perspective, depth, layering have influenced in how I approach my work.

The peer reviews were a little daunting and also 'clunky' to use. I plan to continue with some further courses and hope to see some of you in NYC at the various galleries looking at these amazing artists' work close up.

By M. H

Jul 12, 2020

What an absolute delight it was to be enrolled in this course. Not only did it provide a great release and distraction during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it provided such a fun and interactive way to really learn about some of the great abstract expressionist artists from the NY school of painting. The class was equally balanced between a hands-on experience of painting in each respective artists' style, and with videos and articles to familiarize us with each artist. I would highly recommend this course for any budding artist or "soccer mom" or student who has the desire and time to roll up their sleeves and learn and play with some of the great abstract artists of our time. The course does require a fair bit of time each week if you want to do it right, so plan accordingly! Enjoy!

By Lee C

Jun 22, 2020

I really enjoyed this course and learnt a great deal from it. This was partly because of the way in which it's structured to offer in-depth insight into the works and techniques of individual artists every week. The content is also insightful, engaging and informative, and I found the mix of written, pictorial and video material - supplemented with compulsory and additional reading - enabled me to engage with the subject fully, which is rare in online courses. Corey's insights and, in particular, his technical demonstrations, were the highlight for me. I learnt so much about painting and paint techniques from this course - more than I'd previously learnt in art classes. I'd do another course like it in a heartbeat.

By Carla B

Jul 10, 2017

I learned so much in this art appreciation and experimentation course. Many thanks to Corey D'Augustine who's straight-forward, easy-going style of teaching helped us not be afraid of trying products never used before, in my case oil paints and all the mediums that go with them, and trying methods of famous Abstract Expressionist artists. Many thanks to MoMA for providing this course through and to sponsors like Volkswagen who help make such enlightenment possible. I looked forward to learning through video, reading, my own research and in the studio exercises. I am off to look for similar In the Studio offerings on MoMA's website and considering what I will sign up for next on Coursera. Thank you!

By Noriko F

Jun 24, 2020

Owing to Mr. Corey D'Augustine's lectures, I learned a lot about noted artists in Postwar Abstract Painting including Willem de Kooning and Mark Rothko. He taught me not only their famous paintings but also their techniques and materials they used. Especially he actually demonstrated each artist's painting process, which helped me to know how those artists worked on their paintings and what they wanted to create through their works. I think next time I visit a museum and see a work by one of those artists or of other Abstract Painting artists, I could appreciated it from more wide-ranging points of view. Thank you Mr. Corey D'Augustine and MOMA for giving me a chance to take this course.

By Ingrid W

May 10, 2017

This is an amazing course! I learnt a lot on the technical aspects of many artists I already knew about, discovered early artworks I had not seen before and also got to spend more time on artists like Ad Reinhardt I knew little about. I have always been interested in art history but I never dared touch a brush to try to put myself in the artists seat. This course gently encouraged me to do so thanks to Corey's wonderful videos and I am amazed at what I produced, the fun I had and the additional dimension it provided to my observant eye. Thank you MOMA for such an amazing set of materials and for fuelling the passion for art in more ways than can be imagined.

By SueC

May 30, 2017

I will admit that I am not a fan of abstract painting and that was one of the reasons I enrolled upon this course. I wanted to try and look again, and to attempt to see what others saw who were more enthusiastic about abstract expressionism.

The course covered not only the history of the movement but also the studio techniques of the various artists were demonstrated and you could `paint along' too. The visual analysis techniques were invaluable. While I am still not a total convert I do now take the time to look and think when I see the work of these artists. Thank you for providing an interesting and thought provoking course. More like this please!

By Mary M

Dec 10, 2020

Great course, MoMA!! I'm an art history geek (my minor in art school) and this course checked off all my learning boxes. In my case your choice of genre and artists gave me the chance to dig a little deeper into makers I'm already familiar with and to be interactive with each section.

All the learning material was interesting and educational. Loved the technique videos and the chance to make my own versions of artist's work. Thanks for offering this class free of charge. I truly hope you can keep offering genres of art history learning. Love, love, love!

Mary McClung

Herron School of Art + Design, Indiana University at IUPUI, Indianapolis

By Sirio S M

Jan 24, 2018

I'm a Coursera student for two years ago. In this time I became a professionale painter. To be honest, I thought that he could not teach me much that I did not know, but I love abstract expressionism and I paint in abstract material and so I decided to follow him. It was a wonderful discovery. The teacher and artist is a beautiful person, with a subtle and pleasant sense of humor, a high level of preparation and a person who knows how to teach. It was one of the most beautiful courses I've ever done, the artists are among my favorites and discovering them so closely has been moving. I recommend it to anyone who loves art. Really beautiful.

By Laura S

Jun 23, 2021

An excellently curated course on 8 major abstract artists of the Postwar (WWII) years in NYC. The course includes history, insights into the artists lives, and well done studio sessions where the materials and techniques of each artist are demonstrated. Students also have an option to complete a work of art using the materials, techniques and style of each artist. The quizzes are excellent ways to test your new knowledge and the final essay on a chosen work of art by one of the artist - or a comparison of two - is a great way to use your new knowledge in a critique fashion. Highly recommend this course.

By belinda h

Jun 19, 2017

Thank you so much for offering this class! This is an excellent organized in depth course. Corey D'Augustine provides wonderful educational videos that offered insight into these artist's works, their techniques and the materials that they used - I loved it! Part of being a great teacher is engaging your students -- I was excited to do the assignments and to see what lesson was next! Finishing the course has brought a greater appreciation for the artist's works while also prompting me to apply their techniques to my own painting. I will be looking to more courses from Mr.D'Augustine!

By Gary P H

Apr 1, 2019

Super course. Really good. If you're out to learn something about Abstract Expressionism, or just have a general interest in painting, this course is for you. I particularly enjoyed the optional practicum element, and you should definitely try the exercises that are a fun way for a beginner to get familiar with oil paints and some interesting techniques. I started this course out of curiosity and became hooked; I intend to follow up with more reading and painting. A five-start effort by the whole MoMA team, I highly recommend In the Studio: Postwar Abstract Painting.


Sep 21, 2021

Noteworthy course! Excellent presentation of information, consistency. The video tutorials with the excellent teacher and lecturer Corey D'Augustine were the most fruitful and effective for me for further training. Video materials about artists, links, homework, artist interviews are valuable material. This course opens the door to new professional activities. Gives skills in painting, drawing technique, history. I shine on everyone! I was pleased and impressed!

Thanks to the MoMA Museum, all the creators of this course, and its sponsors!

By Gary E

Feb 3, 2020

I was very impressed with the online course provided by MoMA. I had already watched a number of the videos on Youtube but found the additional videos and reading material both interesting and helpful. I struggled with the De Kooning exercise but will not give up. I learned new techniques etc and that I feel more drawn to the work of Newman, Rothko and Martin more than some of the other ‘action’ painters. It has sstimulated in me a desire to learn more and continue developing as an amateur artist who paints for the joy of it. Thank you MoMA.

By silvia r

Nov 22, 2017

I love this course. I was very excited to attend a course by Mo.Ma of New York and to have it on-line it's perfect for me cause I live in Italy. I learned a lot of interesting things that I've never known before. The teacher is really expert in painting. great to explain in the right way the painting techniques but also he's able to analysis in the details the artworks. I appreciated the resources, video and books given to better understand artists and abstract art. I'm waiting for the next one! Thanks Mo.Ma! Silvia

By Roberto B

May 17, 2017

Very interesting course I appeciate it very much. My only suggestion is: maibe will be nice to go more deeply in the materials used by the artists (not the supposed one) , with link to papers, scientific investigation, conservation treatment report and other useful information about on what is the actual knowledge on the painting materials and tecnique used by the painters of newyork school. That can be useful for people involved in conservation study, or for others involved in museums jobs.