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Graduate Course Schedules


Fall 2022

ARTHIST 590R: Seminar in Methods of Art Historical Research

Jean Campbell     T 4:00-6:45 pm     Callaway S109

This is a seminar course for first-year graduate students.  It will introduce the literature, theoretical frameworks and research methods of Art History. Our focus this fall will be on the question of art history as a humanistic discipline, past, present, and future.  As the course proceeds, we will examine the various practices of art history, their roots in other disciplines, the people and situations that gave rise to current field and its multiple shapes. While the primary focus will be on developing intellectual frameworks to think about work in an expanding field, the course is structured to link the intellectual enterprise to the development of practical skills, such as prospects writing and the presentation of research papers.


ARTHIST 592: Classical Antiquity in Miniature: Greek and Roman Gems

Eric Varner    T 1:00pm-3:45pm     Carlos Museum - Tate Room

Ancient Greek and Roma gems represent a rich microcosm of classical artistic production. Carved out of semi-precious stones such as sardonyx, amethyst, turquoise and rock crystal, cameos and intaglios depict a diverse array of imagery including mythological figures, animals, fantastic creatures, and portraits. Gems were produced for, collected and worn by a wide range of ancient society from prosperous middle class patrons through Hellenistic monarchs and Roman emperors. The Michael C. Carlos Museum has a very large and significant collection of Greek and Roman gems. The seminar will trace the history, development, iconography, and context of ancient cameos and intaglios through the Carlos gems in close conjunction with the exhibition, “Making an Impression: The Art and Craft of Ancient Engraved Gemstones” at the Carlos. Issues of conservation, collecting, and display will also be addressed. Students will work closely with individual gems throughout the semester.


ARTHIST 592G: Technical Art History:Examining Materials & Techniques

Renée Stein     Th 1:00pm-3:45pm     Carlos Museum – Tate Room 

Questions about material choice, working process, authenticity, provenance, object history, and restoration are addressed through the technical investigation of art(ifacts). This course will introduce these questions and a selection of the imaging and analytical methods used to explore them. We will apply these methods to object(s) in the Carlos Museum collection. Case studies will serve as models for our investigative process. In-class workshops will provide practical experiences with art materials and examination methods. We will also consider ways to document and communicate the data we collect through our examination, imaging, and analysis of museum objects. 


ARTHIST 592H:  Architectural Visualization Modeling Lab

Ermal Shpuza     T 6:00pm-9:00pm     M&S E301A

This class serves as an introduction of software mediums that will provide the user with skills in 2-D, 3-D, and motion. The student will use a hands-on approach via the digital world to explore and showcase their ideas in new and unimaginable ways.


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 739R: Medieval Bestiary

Elizabeth Pastan     T 1:00pm-3:45pm     PAIS 393 

Gargoyles, griffins, manticores, babewyns, dragons, snails, and even domestic cats inhabit all kinds of medieval art, jostling for attention with its religious subjects.  The twelfth-century cleric Saint Bernard, whose detailed descriptions nonetheless betray a great attraction to the artistic creations, decried the "comely deformity and deformed comeliness" of the hybrid creatures carved in his cloister.  Yet medieval writers also found profound moral and mystical implications in the lore of the natural world.  This course will explore animal imagery in all media throughout the Middle Ages, but will focus on the bestiaries, the medieval illuminated books dedicated to animals. It is a literature greatly enhanced by scholarship associated with the Animal Turn, which seeks to recognize the massive interdependence of the human and animal realms. Major themes of the course include the importance of the ancient legacy and how it was adapted and transformed by medieval theologians and artists; the rising rates of literacy for which medieval bestiaries may have been instrumental; and the importance of contextualized study.


ARTHIST 749R: Book of the Art

C. Jean Campbell F 1:00pm-3:45pm

This course will consider the special category of books known as artist’s manuals. Materials discussed will range from the book of the Benedictine monk Theophilus Presbyter, to Cennino Cennini’s, Book of the Art; from the so-called technical prefaces of Giorgio Vasari’s Lives of the Painters, Sculptors and Architects to Nicholas Hilliard’s Art of Limning. The goal will be to understand the relation between making and meaning, as represented in these treatises. The themes to be discussed include the trope of secrecy and its use within the knowledge cultures of the late medieval and early modern Europe; the values associated with imitative practice within this tradition; and the functions of representing artisanal knowledge within different settings (monastery, court, city), and the relation between artisanal epistemologies and the evolving scientific cultures of late medieval and early modern Europe. This seminar is designed to introduce graduate students to broadly applicable techniques of reading primary textual sources.


 ARTHIST 759R: Picturing Fable: Fiction-Making in the Visual Arts, 1400-1700

Walter Melion     Th 10am-12:45pm     Fox Ctr seminar (Rm 101)

The power to visualize myths, fables, and other sorts of fictional tales – affabulationes in Latin, favole in Italian, visieringhen in Dutch – constitutes one of the key links between poetry and painting.  Anchored in the imaginative faculty, the painter’s ability to generate such fictions, to bring them to life in ways plausible and persuasive, served to demonstrate a ready command of poetic invention, as well as familiarity with a range of rhetorical devices, especially the major tropes: simile, metaphor, ekphrasis, allegory, prosopopoeia, syllepsis, metonymy, and synecdoche.  The term fable encompasses a wide range of pictorial types, from Illustrations of Ovid’s Metamorphoses to newly coined allegories, sacred and/or profane.  The seminar examines various kinds and degrees of fictional image-making between the mid-fifteenth and mid-seventeenth centuries, focusing on key works by Botticelli, Mantegna, Raphael, Michelangelo, Dürer, Gossart, Floris, Goltzius, Cornelis Corneliszoon, Bloemaert, Rubens, Rembrandt, and Velázquez.


ARTHIST 775R: Postwar / Contemporary German Art

Lisa Lee      M 1:00pm-3:45pm     

This seminar will explore West German art from circa 1950 to the present. We will consider defining debates about the direction of art in the wake of National Socialism. For instance, is art obliged to confront the past or can it commence from a so-called Stunde Null (zero hour)? Close consideration of the oeuvres of Joseph Beuys, Gerhard Richter, Georg Baselitz, Bernd and Hilla Becher, Hanne Darboven and others will ground us in specific artistic practices even as it opens onto broader questions of art’s responses to social, economic, and political contexts—from the FRG’s rapid economic growth under the Marshall plan to the traumatic events of the German Autumn, from the rise of the Berlin Wall to reunification, from the guest worker program of the 1950s and 60s to the influx of migrants and refugees since 2015. This seminar coincides with the Corinth Colloquium in German Modernism, an event in October, during which some of the field’s top scholars will present their work. 


ARTHIST 792: Race and Class Now

Todd Cronan     W 8:30am-11:15am

This seminar explores central problems in the study of race and class with an eye to the world today. The course unfolds around three moments. First, historically, we look at foundational texts by Booker T. Washington, WEB DuBois, Frederick Douglass as well as the midcentury writings of Ralph Ellison, Frantz Fanon, Bayard Rustin, and Oliver C. Cox. Second, we look at race and class discourse today including the works of Barbara and Karen Fields, Adolph Reed, Cedric Johnson, Ta-Nehisi Coates and the 1619 Project. Finally, we consider the defining role that race plays in contemporary art historical discourse looking at a wide range of art historical accounts from the last 5-10 years of writing on race and art.  


ARTHIST 790: Teaching Art History

Linda Merrill     W 1:00pm-2:50pm      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)