Graduate Courses, Spring 2019


ARTHIST 210/592H: Introduction to Graphics & CAD

Shpuza Tues. 5 - 8 p.m. Math & Science E301A

An introduction to drafting, modeling, rendering and animation in which students explore the potential of the computer as an active analytical and design instrument. We take a hands-on approach, focusing on two projects selected according to students' own disciplinary interests.

ARTHIST 470R-1/729: Art and Sacred Experience in the Hellenistic Age: The Sanctuary of the Great Gods on Samothrace 

Wescoat - Tues.  1-4 p.m. Tate Rm, Carlos Museum

In this seminar we will use the Sanctuary of the Great Gods as a backdrop for investigating how artistic and architectural innovations—engendered by political, social, and religious changes that followed the death of Alexander the Great—were deployed in the service of sacred experience in the Hellenistic period. The fame of the windswept, mile-high island of Samothrace in the northeastern Aegean emanated from its mystery cult of the Great Gods, whose rites of initiation promised protection at sea and the opportunity to “become a better and more pious person in all ways” (Diodorus).  Although the rites were kept secret, we can gain a purchase on their transformative power through the comments of ancient authors, the lists of initiates who left their names in the sanctuary, the innovative architecture that sheltered the rituals, the splendid dedications offered to the Gods, and the humble but crucial detritus of cult—pottery and animal bones—that built up over centuries of use spanning from the 7th century BC to the 4th century AD.  The Sanctuary of the Great Gods thus provides a key point of access into the religious, political, and cultural forces that reshaped the visual terrain of the Hellenistic world.

Students will gain hands-on experience working with the archaeological material in our research portfolio and have the opportunity to work with an array of computer programs used to manage, model, reconstruct, and share this remarkable place on earth.

ARTHIST 470R-2/719R: The Discovery of ancient Egyptian afterlife

Nyord - Thurs.  9 a.m. - 12 noon Carlos Conference Room 

It is a well-established idea that the ancient Egyptians went to great lengths achieve eternal life, including such practices as mummification and the construction of often huge and lavishly equipped tombs. However, on closer scrutiny, the Egyptian sources are much less occupied with ideas like eternal life and preservation of the body than this framework would lead us to believe, raising the question of how the modern understanding of ancient Egyptian mortuary religion came about. Through close examination of both primary and secondary sources, this seminar explores the development of the modern concept of the ancient Egyptian afterlife from the beginnings of the discipline of Egyptology in the early 19th century. Throughout its early history, interpretations of the Egyptian afterlife were heavily tinged by broader contemporary ideas in such areas as biblical and Classical scholarship, theology, and ethnography, while also being inextricably bound up with colonial concerns, and the course examines these various backdrops and influences to understand how they have helped shape interpretations of the ancient Egyptian sources.

ARTHIST 475R/739: Embodiment: Investigating the Body in Medieval Art

Pastan - Wed.  9 a.m. - 12 noon. Carlos Conference Room 

In medieval art, the representation of a person or creature often encompasses thinking about the meaning of that entity.  In this seminar we will examine how medieval European thinkers and artists theorized and visualized the body in ways that are vastly different from the ways in which the body is conceptualized today. Indeed, depictions of the “medieval body” varied considerably, from the earthly body — sexed, fleshly, corruptible — to the heavenly and divine body, including Christ’s own. Our considerations will further contextualize representations of gendered, clerical, monstrous, animal, virginal, non-Christian, heretical, and resurrected bodies.[1] 

[1] I am indebted to Prof. Joseph Ackley for much of the language in this course description and for many of the assigned readings. I am additionally grateful to Jacqueline Jung, Karl Whittington, Heide Estes, and Sonja Drimmer for the model syllabi and reading lists they provided me as I prepared this course.

ARTHIST 480R/775R: Mid-Century Modern

Cronan - Tues. 4 - 7 p.m. Carlos Conference Room 

The words “Mid-Century Modern” are everywhere. From Crate & Barrel to Target, Sotheby’s to Craigslist, Mid-Century Modern or MCM marks a craze for a simpler, cooler time. So what was Mid-Century Modern? Kidney-shaped pools and steel beams, polished concrete and plate glass, bent wood and new plastics, womb chairs and spider legs, Mid-Century Modern was experimental, livable, and (seemingly) fun. Progress never looked so good. This course will examine the monuments of mid-century modern architecture, design, film and painting as well as the primary debates around the so-called “affluent society.”

ARTHIST 485/775R Brazilian Contemporary Visual Art 

Jaremtchuk - Fri.  9 a.m. - 12 noon Carlos Conference Room 

In the second half of the twentieth century, Brazilian visual art gained wider visibility and international reach. Brazilian artists involved with modernism, including Hélio Oiticia, Lygia Clark and Lygia Pape, emerged in the wake of World War II, seeking to probe the ontological crisis of the aesthetic object and to explore its unique, aural and mainly visual, aspects. They adopted new materials and insisted on the involvement of the spectator.  Many of their works were foundational for subsequent critical practices and have proved to be the strongest lines in the genealogy of contemporary Brazilian art.  To trace these developments and the attendant debates, the course will consider a panorama of Brazilian visual arts and artists from the 1950s to the present.

ARTHIST 596R: Internship in Art History

Coordinator: Faculty

May be repeated with permission from the director of internships. Interns must be nominated by the department for internships at the Michael C. Carlos Museum, the High Museum of Art, and elsewhere. Variable credit.

ARTHIST 597R: Directed Study

Faculty; variable credit.

ARTHIST 599R: Thesis Research (Permission only)

ARTHIST 759R: Bernini

McPhee - Tues. 1-4 p.m. Carlos Conference Room 

Gianlorenzo Bernini (1598-1680) painter, sculptor, architect, and playwright, served eight popes during the course of his long life and transformed the appearance of the city of Rome. From the early mythological sculptures at the Villa Borghese to the Four Rivers Fountain in the Piazza Navona and the colonnades of St. Peter's, Bernini's work is intimately tied to the landscape of the city and to the particular circumstances of his own biography. This seminar takes a topographical approach to Bernini, considering the individual and his production within the urban and institutional fabric of seventeenth-century Rome.

ARTHIST 729:  Power and Politics in Miniature: Roman Coins and Gems

Varner - Mon. 3 pm - 6 pm Carlos Hall Conference Room

Roman imperial coins and gems represent a rich microcosm of ancient artistic production.  Coins often reflect current trends in imperial iconography and ideology.  Gems, consisting of cameos and intaglios carved out of semi-precious stones such as sardonyx, amethyst, turquoise and rock crystal, depict a diverse array of imagery including mythological figures, animals, fantastic creatures, and portraits. These gems were produced for,  collected  and worn by a wide range of ancient society from prosperous middle class patrons through Roman emperors and members of the imperial family.  The Michael C. Carlos Museum has a very large and significant collection of ancient gems.  The seminar will trace the history, development, iconography, and context of  coins, cameos and intaglios using the Carlos gems.  Issues of conservation, collecting, and display will also be addressed.  Students will work closely with individual coins and gems throughout the semester.

Selected Texts:

M.L. Vollenweider Camées et Intailles.  Tome I.  Les portraits grecs du Cabinet des Médailles.  Catalogue raisonné (Paris 1997). 

M.L. Vollenweider and M. Avisseau-Broustet, Camées et Intailles.  Tome II.  Les portraits romains du Cabinet des Médailles.  Catalogue raisonné (Paris 2003).

Zwierlein-Diehl, Antiken Gemmen und ihr Nachleben (Berlin 2007).

ARTHIST 789R: Poetics and Politics of Museum Display: Focus on Arts of Africa

Gagliardi - Thurs. 1 - 4 p.m. Carlos Conference Room 

The museum scene in Black Panther raises important questions about how museums acquire objects, how the institutions tell stories about objects, who tells the stories, and for whom the stories are told. In this graduate seminar, we will examine how different objects have traveled to galleries and museums in and beyond Africa. We will investigate how curators and other museum professionals make meaning in museums and for whom they make that meaning. And we will consider how shifting local and global contexts impact the display of arts created by artists identified with the continent of Africa. For the final project, students will prepare proposals or write label copy for mock exhibitions of their own design. This course does not require previous study of the continent of Africa or of African arts.

ARTHIST 791: Grad Tutorial: Teaching Art History

Merrill - Wed. 1:00 p.m. - 2:50 p.m. Carlos Conference Room

ARTHIST 790/791 is designed to meet the Graduate School (TATTO) requirement for a teacher training course for students in art history. It is required of those graduate students serving as TAs in ARTHIST 101/102, and is offered in concert with their teaching experience in those courses.

ARTHIST 796R: Internship in Art History

Coordinator: Faculty
May be repeated with permission from the director of internships. Interns must be nominated by the department for internships at the Michael C. Carlos Museum, the High Museum of Art, and elsewhere. Variable credit.

ARTHIST 797R: Directed Study

Coordinator: Faculty
Variable credit (1-12)

ARTHIST 798R: Exam Preparation

Coordinator: Faculty
Variable credit (1-12)

ARTHIST 799R: Dissertation Research

Coordinator: Faculty