Course Descriptions (Undergraduate)

ARTHIST Fall 2020


ARTHIST 101: Art | Culture | Context I

Linda Merrill

101-1: Class consists of two lectures per week held online asynchronously

+ one synchronous discussion section held online:

101-2 DIS

OL

F

8-9:15 AM

101-3 DIS

OL

F

9:40-10:55 AM

101-4 DIS

OL

F

11:20 AM-12:35 PM

101-5 DIS

OL

F

1-2:15 PM

101-6 DIS

OL

F

1-2:15 PM

101-7 DIS

OL

F

2:40-3:55 PM

101-8 DIS

OL

F

4:20-5:35 PM

101-9 DIS

OL

F

6-7:15 PM

Art | Culture | Context, popularly known as “101,” introduces the fundamental concepts of the discipline through the examination and analysis of 101 representative works of art and architecture. Because no single course can provide a comprehensive, historical survey of the arts produced in ancient Egypt and the Near East, Europe, the Americas, and the Islamic world between 40,000 BCE and 1600 CE, Art | Culture | Context focuses on the formal structures and historical contexts of a select group of paintings, sculptures, buildings, and other works of art produced by those cultures, during that span of time. By imparting the ways of looking and thinking that distinguish art history as a field of study, ARTHIST 101 establishes a durable foundation for further coursework and a lifelong appreciation for art.

ARTHIST 101 is taught by the Art History faculty, with two lectures a week presented by specialists in the fields they cover. Weekly discussion sections provide time to ask questions, articulate and dispute ideas, expand upon issues raised in lectures, and examine and analyze works of art in the classroom, the Rose Library, the Michael C. Carlos Museum, and on the campus grounds. ARTHIST 101 is open to all students, including those without prior experience with art history.

Art History major/minor: core requirement


ARTHIST 190 / CL 190: Sex, Lies & Politics in Ancient Rome: Suetonius & the 12 Caesars

Eric Varner     OL synchronous     MW 1-2:15 PM

Popular perceptions of Rome’s first twelve Caesars (who included Julius Caesar, Augustus, Caligula, Claudius, Nero, Vespasian, Titus and Domitian) are often fueled by the ancient biographer Suetonius’s lurid and scandalous accounts of the period. Suetonius’s Twelve Caesars is filled with accusations of outrageous sexual behavior, madness, and political posturing, that are often in direct opposition to the visual record as embodied in official monuments of art and architecture commissioned by the Caesars themselves or their wives. This course will combine an in depth examination of the artistic material, as well as surviving portraits in sculpture and on coins and gems, together with a careful reading of Suetonius’s text, as well as new biographical material on the twelve Caesars. Close attention will be paid to the iconographic meaning of the artistic monuments, their intended audiences, and their points of comparison and divergence from Suetonius, thus revealing the complex nature of Roman culture and society in the early imperial period.


ARTHIST 210: Introduction to Graphics & CAD

Ermal Shpuza     OL synchronous     TTh 6-7:15 PM

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.

Architectural Studies minor: core requirement

Art History major/minor: makers & materials course


ARTHIST 213: Art of Ancient Egypt, 3000-1500 BCE

Rune Nyord & Emily Whitehead     OL synchronous     TTh 8-9:15 AM

This course explores art from ancient Egypt focusing on the period from Predynastic to the end of the Second Intermediate Period (ca. 3000–1550 BCE). Taking a thematic approach, we will follow the origin and development of such iconic ancient Egyptian works of art and architecture as pyramids, decorated tombs, statues and grave goods. As most of these works were motivated by concerns we can broadly term religious, significant attention is paid to situating each within its cultural context as indicated by contemporary sources and traces of practice that can be attested archaeologically.

Art History major/minor: Division I

Architectural Studies: elective


ARTHIST 222 / CL 222: Images of Power: Roman Art Survey

Eric Varner     OL synchronous     TTh 1-2:15 PM

Roman civilization, from the Republican through the Imperial periods, transformed the art and architecture of the ancient Mediterranean.  Innovations in engineering and technique, the introduction of new materials (like concrete), and the Roman genius for cultural assimilation all combined to create an art which was exciting as well as eclectic.  Indeed, Roman art has often been characterized as the first truly modern art.  The course will investigate the ways in which major achievements in sculpture, painting, numismatic and glyptic art, as well as architecture often reflected contemporary developments in Roman politics, society and religion.  In addition the course will explore the relationship of works of art and architecture erected in the city of Rome to those in the provinces, the interaction of public and official art to domestic art, as well as the impact of art commissioned by imperial and elite patrons on that commissioned by non-elite patrons.

Art History major/minor: Division I

Architectural Studies: elective


ARTHIST 225: Ancient Mesoamerican Art & Arch.

Megan O’Neil     OL synchronous     W 9:40-10:55 AM (50% of class work asynchronous)

This course is a survey of the art and architecture of ancient Mesoamerica (Mexico and Central America), beginning with the Olmec on Mexico’s Gulf Coast, covering the immense metropolis of Teotihuacan and the Maya and Zapotec civilizations, and ending with the Aztec Empire, who faced invading Spaniards five hundred years ago. This course covers architecture and art in a variety of media, addressing a range of topics including materials and manufacturing techniques, aesthetics, history, mythology, politics, writing, urbanism, and the creation of sacred landscapes. The course will draw on Carlos Museum collections and explore issues relating to the display and interpretation of ancient Mesoamerican art in museums.

In Fall 2020, this course meets synchronously one day a week and has additional asynchronous components.

Art History major/minor: Division IV

Architectural Studies: elective

Art History major with Museums Concentration: elective


ARTHIST 266: European & American Art after 1950

Lisa Lee    OL synchronous     MW 1-2:15 PM

This course provides a critical survey of the major movements, paradigms, and documents of European and American art after World War II. Special attention will be given to crucial problems like the relation of art to politics; art’s response to mass media and technologies, consumer culture, and globalization; and the redefinition of artistic means. More broadly, we will study fundamental tools for examining works of art formally, historically, and critically. The course is not intended as a comprehensive survey of art after 1950; rather, it will address the complex set of aesthetic, philosophical, and political motivations that shaped the artistic production of select figures and movements, including Abstract Expressionism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Institution Critique, and Performance Art.

Art History major/minor: Division III


ARTHIST 340: Gothic Art & Architecture

Elizabeth Pastan    OL synchronous     TTh 9:40-10:55 AM

The Gothic cathedral, that most characteristic of medieval creations, has been variously portrayed as a symbol of the Heavenly Jerusalem, a theater for the arts, the supreme example of structural engineering, the reflection of Scholastic ideals, and a visual ‘bible for the poor.’ This course will explore all aspects of artistic endeavor on the Gothic site, from its stone vaulting sustained by flying buttresses and the elaborate carvings on the exterior, to the vibrant stained glass windows, rich metalwork, textiles and illuminated manuscripts adorning the interior.  Recent work on the economic and social implications of this kind of large-scale building will place the cathedrals in a broader cultural context, as will restorations that challenge us to look at these building with new eyes. Focus will be on the earliest French monuments of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries, including Saint-Denis, Laon, Notre-Dame of Paris, Chartres, Bourges, Reims, Amiens and the Sainte-Chapelle.

Art History major/minor: Division II


ARTHIST 349R: Art & the City in the Age of Dante

Jean Campbell     OL synchronous      MW 8-9:15 AM

This course will explore the visual arts in the context of urban development in central Italy, covering the period between approximately 1260 and 1360. Focusing on the art and architecture of cities like Siena, Assisi, Perugia, Florence, Padua and Venice, we will consider how the interests of governments, citizens, and artisans of various sorts interacted in the commissioning and production of art in this vibrant period of Italian history.

Art History major/minor: Division II

Architectural Studies: elective


ARTHIST 365 / AFS 389: Postcolonial Arts of Africa

Susan Gagliardi & Haley Jones     OL synchronous     TTh 6-7:15 PM

Artists linked to the continent of Africa often resist framing their work according to ethnic, national, or continental identities. Yet complex histories and understandings of identity often contribute to the content or reception of the artists' work. What expectations might visitors to American or European museums and galleries have about art by an artist specifically identified with the continent of Africa? And how might expectations change if the art were not presented with a qualifier that linked the artist or the work to the continent? Answers to these questions impact where in a museum we might find an artist's work and how a museum might present the work. In this course, we will focus on arts created for worldwide audiences by diverse artists linked to different areas of the African continent. We will look at, read about, and discuss a range of photographs, paintings, sculptures, and other types of work in order to think about what various labels reveal and conceal about art and identity in transnational contexts. The flexible course design also invites dynamic discussion and features pen-and-paper assignments.

Art History major/minor: Division IV

Art History major with Museums Concentration: elective


ARTHIST 369R: Cézanne, Matisse, Picasso

Todd Cronan & Haley Pierce     OL synchronous     TTh 11:20 AM- 12:35 PM

This course will focus on avant-garde art in Paris through the First World War, with a special focus on the highly influential work of Paul Cézanne, Henri Matisse, and Pablo Picasso. Understanding the avant-garde will require intensive treatment of certain key problems—key works, moments of decisive change, dominant individuals. Our aim will be to understand the violent and seemingly irreversible shift in the nature of art-making we associate with Cézanne’s last Bathers, Picasso’s Demoiselles d’Avignon, Matisse’s Bonheur de vivre, and so on. We will also address artists that inhabit the larger avant-garde of the moment including the work of Edouard Vuillard, Pierre Bonnard, Suzanne Valadon, and Félix Vallotton.

Art History major/minor: Division III


ARTHIST 388: Technical Art History

Renee Stein      OL synchronous     Th 2:40-3:55 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

Using imaging methods and analytical techniques, students will investigate material choice, working process, authenticity, provenance, and restoration history of museum objects.

Art History major with Museums Concentration: elective


ARTHIST 475RW: History of Early Modern Printmaking

Walter Melion    OL synchronous    TTh 11:20 AM-12:35 PM

We will be studying the changing format and function of three modes of mechanical reproduction—woodcut, engraving, and etching—that changed the status of pictorial images in several ways between the fifteenth and seventeenth centuries: by translating them from canvas, panel, or the illuminated page to the printed sheet; by multiplying and serializing them; by making them available to a larger and more various viewing public, and facilitating their widespread dissemination; by distributing them under new market conditions; and finally, by necessitating the reappraisal of critical categories such as ‘invention’ and ‘imitation’. Beginning with the origins of woodcut and engraving in the early fifteenth century, we will examine the relation of print technologies to prior media, such as painting in oils and tempera, and drawing with metalpoint, lead, charcoal, and other kinds of stylus. One of the central issues we must consider, is the agency of prints in the formation of pictorial canons, the implementation of pictorial paradigms, and the promulgation of new forms of knowledge. We will also devote sessions to studying the workshops of each of the following masters: Albrecht Dürer, Lucas van Leyden, Marcantonio Raimondi, the Carracci, Hendrick Goltzius, and Rembrandt van Rijn.

Art History major/minor: Division II


ARTHIST 480RW-1: Winslow Homer in Context

Linda Merrill    OL synchronous     MW 2:40-3:55 PM

This seminar will explore the art and life of Winslow Homer (1836–1910), who began his career as a wartime illustrator for Harper’s Weekly and went on to establish an international reputation as one of the greatest American artists of his time. Homer’s astonishing facility with oil and watercolor, combined with his intriguing, reclusive personality, have long attracted the leading scholars in the field; the resulting literature—rich, diverse, and often competitive—will inform our seminar’s investigation of the artist, modelling the various approaches we might take to address a fundamental issue in the scholarship of American art: Is Winslow Homer too idiosyncratic to consider in the context of his time, as many critics have maintained, or is he in fact the perfect product of his age, as concerned with social change and material success as with the greater themes of morality and mortality?

This upper-level seminar is writing intensive and requires previous coursework in art history.

Art History major/minor: Division III


ARTHIST 480RW-2: Monuments, Anti-Monuments, and Counter-Monuments

Lisa Lee   OL synchronous     TTh 2:40-3:55 PM

At various points in history, questions regarding the symbolic and functional significance of public space become acute. It would seem that we are in such a moment. This seminar takes up the topic of the public monument in the 20th and 21st centuries. Crucially, it considers reactions against the conventions and presumptions of traditional monuments, such as permanence, gestalt form, unitary meaning, and centrality. Anti-monumental impulses denounce (sometimes aggressively and violently) the symbolic content imposed from above. Counter-monuments emphasize alternative values: ephemerality, fragmentation, ambiguity, and marginality. Together, the participants in this seminar will grapple with manifestations of power, resistance, and collectivity in public space.

Art History major/minor: Division III

Art History major with Museums Concentration: elective


ARTHIST 589R: Postcolonial Arts of Africa

Susan Gagliardi     OL synchronous     TTh 6-7:15 PM

Artists linked to the continent of Africa often resist framing their work according to ethnic, national, or continental identities. Yet complex histories and understandings of identity often contribute to the content or reception of the artists' work. What expectations might visitors to American or European museums and galleries have about art by an artist specifically identified with the continent of Africa? And how might expectations change if the art were not presented with a qualifier that linked the artist or the work to the continent? Answers to these questions impact where in a museum we might find an artist's work and how a museum might present the work. In this course, we will focus on arts created for worldwide audiences by diverse artists linked to different areas of the African continent. We will look at, read about, and discuss a range of photographs, paintings, sculptures, and other types of work in order to think about what various labels reveal and conceal about art and identity in transnational contexts. The flexible course design also invites dynamic discussion and features pen-and-paper assignments.


ARTHIST 590R: Seminar in Methods of Art Historical Research

Susan Gagliardi     OL synchronous     TTh 9:40-10:55 AM

How can and why should we situate the discipline of art history, art historians, and art itself within different historical, geographic, methodological, and theoretical frames? What has the work of professional art historians been, what is our work today, and what are future possibilities? How have art historians shaped understandings of art as well as the contexts in which art has been or is created, used, and circulated? How can we continue to contribute to knowledge production about art, and why should we do so? In this course, we will investigate such questions through a range of assignments. The flexible course design invites dynamic discussion and features pen-and-paper assignments.


ARTHIST 592G: Technical Art History

Renee Stein     OL synchronous     Th 2:40-3:55 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

Using imaging methods and analytical techniques, students will investigate material choice, working process, authenticity, provenance, and restoration history of museum objects.


ARTHIST 719R: The Discovery of the Ancient Egyptian Afterlife

Rune Nyord     OL synchronous     M 1-4 PM

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 in Western history. In the formative period of the long 19th century in particular, 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 seminar examines these various backdrops and influences to understand how they have helped shape interpretations of the ancient Egyptian sources.


ARTHIST 729: Greek Architectural Decoration

Bonna Wescoat     OL synchronous     T 1-4 PM

Greek architecture is most admired today for its striking tectonic expression of horizontal and vertical forces, and the powerful interplay of mass and space. In antiquity, these boldly trabeated forms were richly augmented with painted, molded, and sculptured decoration. In this seminar, we will consider the complex interaction of architectural form and its ornament by examining embellishments that range from the elaborated roof decorations of the 7th century BC to the painted facades of Macedonian tombs. While engaging theoretical considerations of order and ornament (both Vitruvian and modern), our investigation centers on how the diverse repertoire of architectural ornament, including intricate sculptural programs, floral designs, and tiered patterns of abstract moldings, brought beauty and meaning to Greek architecture.

*Architectural Studies: elective: requires the approval of the teaching professor.


ARTHIST 775R: Modernism as a philosophical problem

Todd Cronan     OL synchronous     W 8-11 AM

What are the defining issues of the modernist period? What, if anything, defines the shared set of concerns and problems of art made between 1850 and 1970? One of the basic questions revolves around the possibility of something called "autonomy." In the simplest terms, it's a question of self-determination or self-rule. It is about the difference, if there is one, between art and the world. Needless to say, the notion that art is defined in opposition to the world is a highly contested one. We will consider why autonomy became a defining concern, and, above all, how it was contested over and over again by a now-familiar set of commitments to the social, the political, materiality, affectivity, and technology.  We will examine the basic efforts to contest autonomy with special emphasis on the social history of art, theories of race and culture, and the "new" materialism or object ontology. What, in the end, is defensible about notions of artistic or individual autonomy? If art is not defined by its autonomy, then what are the proper terms to understand the meaning of art? We will consider both chief exemplars of artistic autonomy (including Manet, Matisse, Picasso, Pollock, Louis) and famous efforts to contest it in the works of Duchamp, Moholy-Nagy, minimalism, and identity-based art. We will examine the writings of Stanley Cavell, Robert Pippin, John McDowell, Elizabeth Anscombe, Clement Greenberg, Michael Fried, Gilles Deleuze, Bruno Latour, Rita Felski and others.


ARTHIST 790: Teaching Art History

Linda Merrill     OL synchronous     W 11:20 AM-12:35 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

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.


ARTVIS Fall 2020


ARTVIS 103: Intro Drawing and Printmaking

Linda Armstrong     OL synchronous     T 1-2:15 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

This class investigates the art and techniques of drawing as relational to printmaking. Printmaking techniques will include woodcuts, collagraphs, monoprints, drypoint etching, and experimental techniques.

Art History major/minor & Architectural Studies minor: satisfies studio art course requirement


ARTVIS 105: Intro Painting

105-1: Linda Armstrong     OL synchronous     Th 1-2:15 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

105-2: Katherine Taylor     OL synchronous     T 9:40-10:55 AM (50% of class work asynchronous)

Intro Painting/Drawing provides an introduction to the fundamentals of these interrelated mediums.  Through a combination of class work and out-of-class assignments, students will gain familiarity with visual elements and their organization in projects that range from representational to non-objective.  Along with the practical experience of working with a range of media and techniques, students should expect to explore drawing and painting within a historic and cultural context and to articulate and discuss their understanding and conclusions.

Art History major/minor & Architectural Studies minor: satisfies studio art course requirement


ARTVIS 109: Intro to Sculpture

Dana Haugaard      OL synchronous     TTh 4:20-5:35 PM

Offered every semester. Credit, four hours. A course designed to provide a firm grounding in the rudiments of sculptural practice. Drawing on historical and contemporary modes of art making this course investigates aesthetic and technical strategies of generating and understanding sculpture. Students are guided toward the realization of three-dimensional form with an emphasis on developing formal language, acquiring basic skills of spatial, conceptual, and technical issues. Students are instructed in the safe use of power and hand tools.

Art History major/minor & Architectural Studies minor: satisfies studio art course requirement


ARTVIS 111: Foundation in Art Practices

Linda Armstrong & Dana Haugaard      OL synchronous     T 9:40-10:55 AM (50% of class work asynchronous)

This foundation-level course exposes students to historical media and practices that undergird the physical creation of art objects, in both two and three-dimensional forms. Designed as a studio course to complement ARTHIST 101. Strategies and materials of art-making. Team Taught Class. No prerequisite.

Art History major/minor & Architectural Studies minor: satisfies studio art course requirement


ARTVIS 205: Intermediate Painting

Katherine Taylor      OL synchronous     Th 11:20 AM-12:35 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

This course builds on the tools and concepts of painting. This course incorporates intermediate levels of conceptual and aesthetic awareness, creative problem solving, aesthetics and critical thinking with an emphasis on the 20th and 21st century aesthetic practices.

Art History major/minor & Architectural Studies minor: satisfies studio art course requirement


ARTVIS 333R: Multidiscipline Design Studio: Introduction to Graphic Design

Jane Foley      OL synchronous     Th 6-7:15 PM (50% of class work asynchronous)

This course is a multi-disciplinary course that will teach students how to write an art proposal, how to gather field research, and how to talk with experts about important topics. This research will be woven into the process of creating visual models, designs, and drawings.