Modern art appears in the public imagination as a closed world that only connoisseurs can decipher. In many cases the public reacts to this apparently hermetic world with awe and respect but also with anger and scorn. This course aims to open the doors to this world through the exploration of the artists' experiences and perceptions of their art and place in society. By understanding art as an ever-changing game, and its practitioners and other participants as "gamers", it will be possible to understand the development of modern art from Manet and Cezanne to the present. Through readings, video screenings, and studio and museum visits, students will engage this problematic through intellectual, emotional, and practical approaches. This hands-on approach will provide an insider's look at the way artists relate to their work, and react to that of others while providing the tools necessary to appreciate distinct modern artists and tendencies and to understand why even a big red dot on a canvas is art.