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Graduate Courses

Please consult SPIRE for current course offerings throughout the fields of:

  • Ancient Greek and Roman

  • Medieval

  • Italian Renaissance and Baroque

  • Colonial Latin America

  • American Art (Colonial to 1940)

  • European, 1750 to 1914

  • Black diasporic visual culture in the 18th and 19th centuries

  • European/American Art, 1880 to the present

  • Architecture in Europe and the United States, 1800 to the present

  • Latin American and US Latinx Art

  • East Asian Art

Spring 2023 Graduate Art History Course Offerings

Class title Instructor Time
629 – American Art 1860-1940 (#66964) Gomez Tu/Th 11:30 – 12:45

This course is an introduction to the art produced in Latin America and by people of Latin American descent, from 1800 to the present. Organized chronologically, the course emphasizes the essential role that art and visual culture have played in the political, social, and religious spheres of Latin America since the wars of independence, as well as the way art is mobilized by Latinx people in the United States. Classes will focus on key topics, including the art of national propaganda, the activation of indigenous visual traditions, the representation and erasure of Afro-Latin Americans, the visualizations of diasporic identities, and art as a contemporary political tool.

643 - 20th Century Architecture: Socialism, Capitalism, Globalization (#68770) Rohan M/W 4:00 – 5:15

This lecture course examines the history of the modernist movement from 1914 to the present in relationship to the primary ideologies of the 20th and 21st centuries, socialism, capitalism, and globalism.  It considers the work of the founding figures - Wright, Mies, Gropius and Le Corbusier - and significant themes such as the individual vs. the collective; European vs. American approaches; modernism beyond the West; and the impact of popular culture and new technologies.

691E – Sem – Early Modern Art – Craft and Design in Japan (#68768) Ho M/W 2:30 – 3:45

Now that our world is increasingly virtual, what is the significance of material objects? How has the history of craft in Japan come to shape our current understanding of what Yanagi Setsu rhapsodized as the beauty of everyday things?? This course examines the history of artisans and designers in Japan in order to analyze the meaning of materiality, craftsmanship and skill, technique and applied knowledge, and our human relationship with things.  In order to develop our material intelligence, we will study historical and contemporary objects textiles, ceramic, paper, iron, wood, lacquer, and bamboo? from multiple perspectives, from raw materials, technique, lineages and workshops, to their contemporary legacies.  Class sessions combine theory with practice: we read and contextualize the major theorists of craft and design in the twentieth century, and we will visit artisans throughout the Pioneer Valley to view their adaptation of Japanese techniques today.  Assignments on the biographies of objects emphasize practical critical thinking and writing skills in curating, interpretation, and design.

697V – ST – Vexed Antiquities (#58619) La Follette M/W 2:30 – 3:45

The topic of looted art appears in the news on a weekly basis, with art historians, museums, archaeologists, economists and legal scholars all weighing in on the problem.   In this class we will explore and debate issues concerning the looting of ancient sites; ethical, political, and legal aspects of the international trade in art objects and antiquities; authenticity and forgery of ancient art and the scientific technologies applied in the analysis of ancient objects; the management of museums and repatriation of cultural property; conservation and preservation of cultural heritage; and the protection of cultural property in armed conflict. By the end of the class, students should be able to apply critical reasoning to a variety of ethical issues related to the heritage of the ancient world and to articulate (in oral and written form) responses to these current controversial topics. No required textbook: we will be reading articles from newspapers and other essays supplied in pdf form.

697W – ST – Oriental Carpet/East & West (#68634) Denny Tu/Th 1:00 – 2:15

A historical overview of the most iconic of all Islamic art forms. Carpets, produced in many Islamic societies on all social and economic levels? encampment, village, town and court atelier? were widely created and used within Islamic societies and beyond. They became an integral element of European culture for over seven hundred years, documented in hundreds of European paintings. Largely the product of women artists, Islamic carpets present fascinating questions of origins, influence, stylistic development, symbolism, and cultural adaptation. The course includes hands-on experience and field trips to local collections.

729 – Problems in American Art (#68771) Nelson M 4:00 – 6:45 

This course will focus upon the visual culture of slavery in Canada and the American North, drawing context from other temperate and tropical climate sites. Scholarship on slavery in Canada and the American North falls far short of the research that has been produced on the American South, the Caribbean, and northern South America. The same is also true for other northern or temperate climate regions ?Scotland, Denmark, Norway, and Argentina ? that became sites where enslaved minorities were forced to adapt to cold climates and where year-round agricultural economies could not be sustained. Indeed, slavery has come to be associated almost exclusively with tropical and semi-tropical planation economies. This course seeks to redress the academic neglect of slavery in temperate and northern regions by introducing students to the interdisciplinary field of Slavery Studies through the lens of art and visual culture and providing the tools for them to produce original scholarship.

782 –Museum Studies (#58609) Denny Tu 4:00 – 6:45pm

Introduction to museum methods and practices. Issues such as the role of museums in society, the development of col-lections, conservation, curatorial and registrarial responsibilities, museum management, public relations, funding, ethics, and the production of exhibitions and catalogs. Includes field trips to area museums. Consent of instructor required.

Download our: Spring 2023

Previous Course Offerings:  Fall 2022Fall 2021 | Spring 2021 | Fall 2020 | Spring 2020 | Fall 2019 | Spring 2019 | Fall 2018 | Spring 2018