Art History T-Shirt Woot!

Aaaagggghh! The new school year beckons and life will soon become a lot more hectic. It’s time to look at calendars, devise courses, write syllabi, and plan one’s autumn art history wardrobe!

Those who know me will have no trouble identifying this last item as the odd one out. I’m a reliably disheveled looking professor: I don’t care much about what I wear; my beard is not so much a beard as the absence of a shaving regime; and I generally try to extend the time between my haircuts far beyond the culturally suggested period of six weeks.

Fortunately I work in an art department and we have a relaxed dress code–if, indeed, there is a dress code at all. Nobody’s told me. But this semester, I thought I’d plan my wardrobe or, to put it more modestly and accurately, I thought I’d go online and buy a few new t-shirts, each featuring an art history theme. So over I surfed to and, before long, I had found three candidates.


ASCII Night by artguyaaron

One shirt featured a binary-code version of Van Gogh’s Starry Night.


Leonardo by ramyb

Another riffed on the Leonardo-as-ninja-turtle theme, showing him busily working on a Vitruvian turtle. (Pedantic critique: would Leonardo really have used an easel to make his drawing? And shouldn’t our Leoturtle be using his left flipper, not his right? It’s enough to drive an art historian mad!)


The Mrowr by walmazan

Finally, there was a weird version of Munch’s The Scream, featuring cats chasing a tantalizingly out-of-reach morsel (identified by the designer as a “grilled beef patty”). I like the title of this shirt: not The Scream or The Cry, but The MrowrJames Joyce would have approved.

Reader, I bought all three.

Admittedly three t-shirts do not a wardrobe make. Still, I’m looking forward to donning these shirts for those when days I’m teaching related portions of my art history survey class. They’ll be talking points for both me and the students. And at least for a moment, part of my outfit will be somewhat coordinated with something else: the image on the screen.

[Legal disclaimer: The fact that I did not receive payment from shirt.woot for featuring their t-shirts in this post does not guarantee that I will refuse any free shirts that they happen to send in my direction.]


Yours Truly