There is a great short article from The Artstor Blog on the Little Ice Age, aka the “polar vortex” of the 17th & 18th centuries. The Little Ice Age is part of the (previous) AP World History standards AND the article includes the painting Hunters in the Snow from the AP Art History curriculum. Double win!
Read the Artstor article here: Picturing the Little Ice Age
AP World History Curriculum
Key Concept 4.2: Although the world’s productive systems continued to be heavily centered on agriculture, major changes occurred in agricultural labor, the systems and locations of manufacturing, gender and social structures, and environmental processes.
I. Beginning in the 14th century, there was a decrease in mean temperatures, often referred to as the Little Ice Age, around the world that lasted until the 19th century, contributing to changes in agricultural practices and the contraction of settlement in parts of the Northern Hemisphere.
AP Art History Curriculum
83. Hunters in the Snow. Pieter Bruegel the Elder. 1565 CE. Oil on wood.
Enduring Understanding 3-5. The 16th-century Protestant Reformation and subsequent Catholic Counter-Reformation compelled a divergence between northern and southern western European art with respect to form, function, and content.
Essential Knowledge 3-5a. Production of religious imagery declined in northern Europe, and nonreligious genres, such as landscape, still life, genre, history, mythology, and portraiture, developed and flourished. In the south, there was an increase in the production of political propaganda, religious imagery, and pageantry, with the elaboration of naturalism, dynamic compositions, bold color schemes, and the affective power of images and constructed spaces.