Art History Courses, 2006-2007Last updated: September 20, 2012
Art History Undergraduate Courses, 2006-2007
ARTH 10100 Introduction to Art. This course seeks to develop skills in perception, comprehension, and appreciation when dealing with a variety of visual art forms. It encourages the close analysis of visual materials, explores the range of questions and methods appropriate to the explication of a given work of art, and examines the intellectual structures basic to the systematic study of art. Most important, the course encourages the understanding of art as a visual language and aims to foster in students the ability to translate this understanding into verbal expression, both oral and written. Examples draw on local collections.Winter, Spring.
ARTH 14300 Introduction to Western Medieval Art. This course examines some of the major monuments and movements from late antiquity to the fifteenth century, with a focus on western Europe. We will also consider how art historians of the past have approached this material, introducing a variety of the approaches used in the discipline as a whole. C. Normore. Autumn.
ARTH 15500 Nineteenth Century Art: Revival and Invention. For nonmajors, this course meets the general education requirements in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. Since shortly before the French Revolution, the conviction of leading artists and critics in Europe and North America was that art and society were intertwined and that both needed reform and reinvention. This course tracks this reformatory impulse as it is manifested and contested from the 1760s to the 1890s through a review of selected works by artists (e.g., Jacques Louis David, Caspar David Friedrich, Claude Monet, Paul Gauguin, Vincent van Gogh, Edvard Munch); buildings (e.g., the British Museum in London, Marshall Field's department store in Chicago); and graphic materials (e.g., cartoons of the French Revolution, advertising posters of Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec). Attendance at weekly discussion sections is required. M. MacNamidhe. Spring.
ARTH 15700 Introduction to the American Built Environment. The American landscape is filled with houses, factories, highways and other monuments to its inhabitants' impulse to build. What do these structures tell us about American culture? This course surveys the American built environment from the eighteenth century to the present day. Particular attention will be paid to issues of social history, the history of technology, and the manipulation of historical traditions in defining American architectural identity. V. Solan. Autumn.
ARTH 16100 Art of Asia: China. (=EALC 16100) This course is an introduction to the arts of China focusing on the bronze vessels of the Shang and Zhou dynasties, the Chinese appropriation of the Buddha image, and the evolution of landscape and figure painting traditions. We consider objects in contexts (from the archaeological sites from which they were unearthed to the material culture that surrounded them) to reconstruct the functions and the meanings of objects, and to better understand Chinese culture through the objects it produced. Wu Hung. Winter.
ARTH 16700 Islamic Art and Architecture, 1500-1900. This course surveys the art and architecture of the Islamic world from 1500-1900. In that period of the three great Islamic empires: the Ottomans, the Safavids, and the Mughals. Each of these multi-religious, multi-linguistic, multi-ethnic empires developed styles of art and architecture that expressed their own complex identities. Further, they expressed their complex relations with each other through art and architecture. The various ways in which contact with regions beyond the Islamic world throughout this period impacted the arts will also be considered. P. Berlekamp. Spring.
ARTH 16800 Arts of Japan. (=EALC 16806) The purpose of the course is two-fold; 1) to introduce students to a select group of significant monuments in Japanese arts and to the unique aesthetic, cultural, and historical issues that frame them, and 2) to present the main issues in the study of art history and the various methods that art historians use in order to analyze and interpret objects of art. The objects studied stem from a number of media - paintings, lacquer, architecture, wall and door paintings, sculpture, and ceramics - and will range from the prehistoric to the contemporary. Objects/topics will include: Jômon and prehistoric cultures, Buddhist sculpture of the Tôdaiji Temple, Phoenix Hall of the Byôdôin, narrative handscrolls, the tea ceremony and its arts, castles of the samurai, Sesshû's visions of China, sliding doors in Buddhist temples, cultures of the woodblock prints, and Miyazaki Hayao's anime. H. Thomsen. Spring.
ARTH 17106 Chinese Calligraphy and Civilization. If the invention of writing is regarded a mark of early civilization, the practice of calligraphy is a unique and sustaining aspect of Chinese culture. This course will introduce concepts central to the study of Chinese calligraphy from pre-history to the present. For discussion: materials and techniques, aesthetics and communication, copying/reproduction/schema and creativity/expression/personal style, public values and the scholar's production, orthodoxy and eccentricity, official scripts and the transmission of elite culture, wild and magic writing by "mad" monks. No prior coursework required. Ping Foong. Spring.
ARTH 17400 The University of Chicago Campus. An introduction to architecture and planning, this course examines the changes in thinking about the University campus from its origins in the 1890s to the present. Many of the University's choices epitomize those shaping 20th-century American architecture at large, and some of our architects are of national significance. The course develops skill in analyzing architectural and urban form in order to interpret: how the university images itself in masonry, metal and lawn; how it works with architects; whether buildings have effected or affected social and intellectual programs or values; the effects of campus plans and citing of individual buildings; the impact of technological change, and of notions of historical memory and progressive change. Many sessions are "on site," looking at buildings; we also look at archival documents that illuminate why and how they were designed. Discussion and bi-weekly papers, based on visual analysis and readings, are central to the course K. Taylor. Spring.
ARTH 17502 Twentieth Century Art and Dance. The history of 20th-century art cannot be told without addressing the concerns of movement, space, the body, the ephemeral, and the performative. Yet seldom does art history look to the movement-art of dance to inform the place of these ideas in 20th-century visual culture. This course, by examining key makers of 20th-century dance in the context of modern art, will reveal how dance has often paralleled, inspired, or collaborated in contemporary art and the thinking surrounding it. The course aim is to give students an introduction to Modernism and Postmodernism in both art and dance. We will look for shared aims across the disciplines, examining and testing the boundaries of art history's concepts and methods. We will question why artists at various moments in the 20th century found dance to be a desirable medium to express or push the boundaries of their own media, and conversely the ways in which dance has borrowed from the visual arts. If the local events calendar provides a good example, the class may attend local art collections or live performance. E. Andrew. Winter.
ARTH 17706 Twentieth Century Avant Garde. This course will introduce the art of the historical avant-gardes and neo-avant-gardes of the twentieth century. Focusing on the interrelationships between avant-garde culture and the emerging mass cultural formations of the industrial societies in Western Europe, North America, and the former USSR, this course will address a wide range of historical and methodological questions: the impact of new technologies of production; the utopian projects of the avant-gardes; the transformation of modernist concepts of artistic autonomy; the changing roles of cultural institutions, as well as the construction of social Others, the formation of new audiences, and neo-avant-garde strategies of institutional critique. M. Jackson. Autumn.
ARTH 17800 Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo: Their Art in Context. This course examines the art and personality of the two very different artists who are often considered the culminating figures of the Italian Renaissance and the Florentine artistic and social context out of which they emerged. Through the concentrated study of their works, the course will introduce students with little or no background in art history to some of the major avenues for interpretation in this field including stylistic, iconographic, semiotic, psychological, social and theoretical. Readings are chosen with this diversity of approach in mind. Special attention will also be given to the writings and drawings of the artists themselves as a means of thinking about the complex issues of artistic intention. C. Cohen. Winter.
ARTH 17803 Strange Shadows: Four Painters. B. Stafford. This course examines the increasing tension between the highly visible structure and the elusive or invisible content in the works of four nineteenth-century masters: David, Goya, Manet, and Gauguin. B. Stafford. Autumn.
ARTH 17903. 1900 in the Smart Museum. All the materials considered in this course are twentieth-century works of art located in the University's Smart Museum. Group discussions will focus on how to look at works of art and the questions to ask of them. We concentrate on different media (painting, sculpture, and print) and works drawn from different movements (Cubism, German Expressionism, Abstract expressionism and contemporary art). M. Ward. Autumn.
ARTH 18000. Photography and Film. This course serves as an introduction to the history of art by concentrating on some fundamental issues in the history of photography and film and covers both still photography and film. The central theme concerns the way in which photographs and films have been understood and valued during the past 164 years. We begin with some of the earliest views about what photographs are and then take a look at some attempts to make photographs worthy of being called works of art. We then review some early and recent theoretical statements about film as art in conjunction with viewing some motion pictures. The aim of the course is to familiarize students with the history of photography and film using some of the critical tools we have for understanding art. J. Snyder. Spring.
ARTH 18600 Self-Portraits, Diaries and Autobiographies: Imaging the Public Self. How is the self organized for presentation to the surrounding world, both present and future? What principles of selection, censorship, and invention underlie the written and pictorial images of the lives and physical appearance individuals offer to the public? How do we respond to, and what is communicated by, the self-projections of others? During this quarter we examine self-imagery in multiple genres from the nineteenth- and twentieth-centuries in an effort to address these and related issues. R. Heller. Winter.
ARTH 20000 Introduction to Film Analysis. (=CMST 10100, COVA 25400, ENGL 10800, ISHU 20000) This course introduces basic concepts of film analysis, which are discussed through examples from different national cinemas, genres, and directorial oeuvres. Along with questions of film technique and style, we consider the notion of the cinema as an institution that comprises an industrial system of production, social and aesthetic norms and codes, and particular modes of reception. Films discussed include works by Hitchcock, Porter, Griffith, Eisenstein, Lang, Renoir, Sternberg, and Welles. Staff, J. Stewart. Autumn, Spring.
ARTH 20100/30100 Art of Ancestor Worship: Chinese Art from Prehistorical to the Third Century. (=EALC 24900, RLST 27600). This course focuses on various art forms (e.g., ritual jades and bronzes, tomb murals and sculptures, family temples and shrines) that were created between the third millennium B.C. and the second century A.D. for ancestral worship, which was the main religious tradition in China before the introduction of Buddhism. Central questions include how visual forms convey religious concepts and serve religious communications and how artistic changes reflect trends in the ancestral cult. Wu Hung. Spring.
ARTH 20800/30800 From Naturalism to Abstraction. This course explores the development of naturalism in Classical art, as the fundamental regime of representation in the West. The Intellectual aims of the course are to examine both the visual development of a fundamental system of representation and the emergence of academic discourses by which to evaluate and assimilate the artistic phenomena. The pragmatic objectives of this course are that, by the end, students should feel capable of handling images from Greek and Roman art at an advanced level. The course should provide a sufficient acquaintance with Classical art – its principal objects, materials and methods of study across a broad period – to equip students with the background for further research should they wish to pursue this at a higher level. Spring, J. Elsner (5 weeks).
ARTH 22300 Medieval Book Arts. This course traces the development of the book in Western Europe from the emergence of the codex in Late Antiquity to the rise of printing in the fifteenth century. Special attention is given to the emergence of new forms for both liturgical and non-liturgical manuscripts and the social changes (e.g. increased literacy, shifts in devotional practices, classical revival) in which they took part. We also consider some of the practical and theoretical problems of the book as a form including the relationship between texts and images and the techniques used to make a manuscript. The class will draw heavily on the manuscript collections at the University and at the Newberry Library. C. Normore. Spring.
ARTH 23400/33400 Art, Architecture and Identity in the Ottoman Empire. (NEAA 20801/30801) Though they did not compose a "multi-cultural society" in the modern sense, the ruling elite and subjects of the vast Ottoman Empire came from a wide variety of regional, ethnic, linguistic, and religious backgrounds. The dynamics of the Empire's internal cultural diversity, as well as of its external relations with contemporary courts in Iran, Italy, and elsewhere, were continuously negotiated and renegotiated in its art and architecture. This course examines classical Ottoman architecture, arts of the book, ceramics, and textiles. Particular attention is paid to the urban transformation of Byzantine Constantinople into Ottoman Istanbul after 1453, and to the political, technical, and economic factors leading to the formation of a distinctively Ottoman visual idiom disseminated through multiple media in the sixteenth century. P. Berlekamp. Winter.
ARTH 23600/33600 French and Italian Drawings of the 16th-18th Centuries This seminar will offer a small group of students the chance to study the development of drawing in Italy and France from 1500-1800, working with original comparison of the two different national approaches, this course will challenge concepts of the role of drawing in artistic careers and explore the specific research techniques peculiar to drawings, including conservation issues, provenance, paper, watermarks, etc. The seminar will culminate with a proposal for a small exhibition, including all of the punch-list items entailed in preparing an installation. Winter (tentatively scheduled from 4-6 on Mondays at Art Institute). S. McCullagh. Winter.
ARTH 23700/33700 The Painted Room in Early Modern Italy and China. PQ: any ARTH 10000-level class or consent of instructor. This course will examine an assortment of Italian Renaissance fresco cycles and painted spaces in early modern China, taking into particular account their relationships to that greater environment - both artistically, as part of a larger decorative phenomenon - and physically, as part of a larger built space designed for a specific purpose. Thus in addition to issues of artistic style, this course may consider themes such as the use and experience of space, narrative, the understanding of religious iconography and ritual, performance, etc. Accordingly, the readings for this course will include some more theoretically oriented texts, as well as some more traditionally object-oriented texts. Class time will also be a mixture of lecture and discussion. I. Backus. Winter.
ARTH 24300/34300. Arts of African Antiquity. This course examines sub-Saharan African art and architecture, from rock art to fifteenth century sculpture. We will focus on ancient arts of southern Africa, Nigeria, and the empires of Ghana, Mali, and Songhai, and such key monuments as Great Zimbabwe, Timbuktu, and the Mosque at Djenne. Given the often troubled or insufficient archaeological record, how do we reconstruct the histories and meanings of these works? Students will question the emphasis on iconography and gesture, the reliance on dynastic myths, and use of contemporary ethnography. The impact of forgeries and looting on scholarship, as well as intellectual debates over the relationship to Nubia and Egypt will be explored. J. Levin. Spring.
ARTH 25100/35100 The Painter and the Art Critic in Nineteenth-Century France By the early nineteenth century in France, the Paris Salon exhibition had emerged as the single most important arena in which the reputations of young artists could be made or broken, and it was art critics?by and large?who determined their fates. The Salon's centrality may have diminished over time, but Paris's thriving print culture along with the traditional prestige of art criticism as a genre ensured a continuing and vital role for a wide array of commentators. This course explores this role. Canonical figures (Baudelaire, Stendhal, Fénéon) will be considered as well as lesser-known voices (Chaussard, Delécluze). These contemporary viewers looked long and hard at individual paintings; we will try to do the same?to that end, visits to the Art Institute feature in this course. Students will be introduced to a range of writings from throughout the century, with special emphasis given to examples from its first quarter. Previous knowledge of French not essential; translations will be given. McNamidhe. Autumn.
ARTH 25506/35506 Modernism and the Avant-Garde in Imperial Japan. (=HIST 14402) This discussion-oriented course will interrogate the meaning of "avant-garde" in the Japanese context and how Japanese imperialism shaped an environment conducive to the rise of various literary and artistic movements in dialogue with other international trends from 1905 until the thirties. We will define "avant-garde" and "modernism" as we look at the history of literature and modern art since Japan's victory in the Russo-Japanese War. Among the issues discussed will be the problematic terms of "modernization" and "Westernization" in the context of art and literature and changing conceptions of space. Beginning in the late twenties with greater state control over cultural expression and Japan's expansion into China, cultural production was increasingly affected by censorship and government repression though laws governing print and political association had been extant since the Meiji period (1868-1912). How did this shape literary and artistic expression? How did the imperial government react to often critical depictions of the colonial space and how did these descriptions change in reaction to the domestic political environment? Autumn. A. Culver.
ARTH 25900/35900 Theories of Media. (=ARTHV 25400, CMST 27800/37800, ENGL 12800/32800, IHU 21800, MAPH 34300). PQ: Any 100000-level ARTH or ARTV course, or consent of instructor. This course explores the concept of media and mediation in very broad terms, looking not only at modern technical media and mass media but also at the very idea of a medium as a means of communication, a set of institutional practices, and a habitat in which images proliferate and take on a 'life of their own.' Readings include classic texts (e.g. Plato's Allegory of the Cave and Cratylus, Aristotle's Poetics); and modern texts (e.g., Marshall McLuhan's Understanding Media, Regis Debray's Mediology, Friedrich Kittler's Gramaphone, Film, Typewriter). W.J.T. Mitchell. Winter.
ARTH 26400/36400 History of Photography: 1839-1970. (=ARTV 26300/36300, HIPS 25300) PQ: Any 10000-level ARTH or ARTV courses, or consent of instructor. This course studies in detail the invention of the photographic system as a confluence of art practice and technology. The aesthetic history of photography is traced from 1839 through the present. Special emphasis is placed on the critical writings of P.H. Emerson, Erwin Panofsky, Alfred Stieglitz, Lewis Mumford, Susan Sontag, and Michael Fried. J. Snyder. Spring.
ARTH 26600/36600 Ideas of the City in the Early 20th Century. It is hard to understand contemporary architectural debate about how cities should be reshaped without knowing its origins in the influential city planning proposals developed by architects in pre-World War II Europe and the U.S. This course studies those foundations, looking at the period when modernist architects and intellectuals proclaimed the obsolescence of the metropolis just as it came to dominate the modern landscape. We will examine a variety of strategies devised to order or replace the metropolis during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, ranging from the City Beautiful movement in Chicago, Camillo Sitte's influential critique of Vienna's Ringstrasse, and the English garden city alternative Lewis Mumford championed for the New York region, to Le Corbusier's Plan Voisin for Paris, Frank Lloyd Wright's Broadacre City model at New York's Rockefeller Center, and Speer's and Hitler's intentions for Berlin. Focussing on particular projects and their promulgation in original texts and illustrations, as well as in exhibitions and film, we will be especially concerned with their polemical purposes and contexts (historical, socio-cultural, professional, biographical), and with the relationship between urbanism and architecture. K. Taylor. Autumn.
ARTH 26700/36700 Manifestations of Modernism: The Year 1913. (=GRMN 27300/37300, ARTV 28600/38600) Around 1913, classical Modernism reached its apogee in the visual arts. Tendencies that emerged beginning in the late nineteenth century matured, and major innovations (ranging from the invocation of abstraction in painting and sculpture to the further subversion of traditional art concepts in the 'ready-made') reached systematic formulations. Using several exhibitions as a focus, this course explores critically the varieties of Modernist work, reception, and theory. R. Heller. Spring.
ARTH 26802/36802 "Colonizing" Paris: Arab Paris (=HIST 12304) This course explores the presence of North Africa in the French capital from WWI until the present. It considers the ways immigrants from Morocco, Algeria and Tunisia, both Muslim and Jewish, have changed the city's urban landscape as well as how French architects and designers have used North African styles in Paris. The course thus engages the problem of the relationship between the built environment and the social practices that both reflect and construct it. Students will explore some of the central issues of 20^th century French history: colonization and decolonization; the challenge to secular republicanism produced by racial and religious others; and the integration of immigrants. This course is designed to examine the complex intersections of race and religion in the French imagination historically and in the contemporary moment. Davidson, N. Winter. (TUTH 3.30-4.20)
ARTH 26805/36805 The Visual Culture of Rome and Her Empire. (=CLCV 26206, CLAS 36202) This general survey of Roman material culture will use the archaeological evidence complementary to literary sources in order to delineate the development of Roman society from the Early Republic down to the first sacking of Rome in 410 CE. Urban planning, public monuments, political imagery, and the visual world of Roman cities, houses and tombs will be discussed in relationship to the political and social processes that shaped their formal development. E. Mayer. Winter.
ARTH 26900/36900 Perspectives on Imaging (=BPRO 27000, BIOS 29207, CMST 27300/37300, HIPS 24801) PQ: Third- for fourth-year standing. Imaging plays a central role in biomedical research and practice. This role is likely to grow in the future as seen by the recent creation of the new National Institute for Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering within the National Institutes of Health. This course explores technical, historical, artistic, and cultural aspects of imaging from the earliest attempts to enhance and capture visual stimuli through the medical imaging revolution of the twentieth century. Topics include the development of early optical instruments (e.g., microscopes, telescopes); the first recording of photographic images; the emergence of motion pictures; the development of image-transmission technologies (e.g., offset printing, television, the Internet); and the invention of means to visualize the invisible within the body through the use of X-rays, magnetic resonance, and ultrasound. B. Stafford, P. La Riviere. Autumn. (Tuesday/Thursday 10:30-11:50 am BSLC).
ARTH 27104/37104 American Graphic Design and Commercial Culture, 1897-1960. (=HIST 27101/37101) This course examines traditions of commercial graphic design in American against the background of social, aesthetic, technological, and economic change. In an international context, attention is paid to the growth of advertising and book illustration. We also discuss the training and career lines of professional designers, outlets for their work, new methods of visual reproduction and technique, exhibition and promotional strategies, and the relationship between graphic arts trends and historical events. N. Harris. Autumn. ( MW 1:30-2:50 p.m. Special Collections room of the library JRL 130)
ARTH 27302/37302 (=PHIL 21810/31810) Resemblance and Family Resemblance: Goethe, Galton, and Wittgenstein. (ARTH 27301/37301) This course will critically examine and explore the possibility of forms of unity and their representation that do not fit into any of the categories of representation traditionally allowed for by philosophers – such as the category of singular representation (such as intuitions or definite descriptions) or general representation (such as concepts or diagrams). The three main authors who explore the possibility of such anomalous forms of unity and their representation that we will discuss will be the German poet, philosopher and scientist, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, the British psychologist, naturalist and theorist of photography, Francis Galton, and the Austrian philosopher, Ludwig Wittgenstein. J. Conant and J. Snyder. Autumn.
ARTH 27306/37306 The American Suburb. This seminar will examine the architecture, historiography and visual representation of American suburbia. Participants will explore the idea of the suburb in the context of questions about immigration and ethnicity, class identity, gender and technology, as well as ideas about rural virtue and the therapeutic value of nature. The subjective division between 'suburb' and 'city' will be discussed, with attention given to the question of whether the suburb is a settlement pattern, a style of architecture, or a mindset. The contribution of visual artists to contemporary perceptions of suburbia will also be examined. Readings will include Robert Bruegmann, Andres Duany and Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, Robert Fishman, Jane Jacobs and Becky Nicolaides. V. Solan. Spring.
ARTH 27600/37600 Art and Experience after Postmodernism. The collapse of the Soviet Bloc, the tech boom of the mid-1990s, and the aftermath of September 11th could be described as marking three stages in the decline of High Postmodernism. Or, at least, this is the narrative that our course will examine as we explore various aspects of art production in its global context over the past twenty years. Special attention will be devoted to a wide selection of theoretical and critical writing that has attempted to describe recent transformations in the artworld. We will ask: do these interpretations hold up to skeptical scrutiny? Do they come to terms with the most significant works of contemporary art? Could we imagine other modes of inquiry more appropriate to this task? M. Jackson. Winter.
ARTH 27706/37706 Reconsidering Connoisseurship: Framing Materiality in Japanese Visual Culture. (=EALC 27706/37706) The idea of connoisseurship has become deeply unfashionable in art history departments throughout the English-speaking world. At the same time, connoisseurship remains an important tool for most curators in art museums. This course will examine the history of the concept of connoisseurship, including theoretical works by both camps, in an attempt to understand this disjuncture. Using these texts and actual works of art, the class will examine key aspects of connoisseurship theory and practice in Western and Japanese contexts and reconsider the usefulness of the concept in contemporary art historical discourse. Particular attention will be paid to issues such as the mounting and framing of art objects, seals and inscriptions placed on the works, and the hoary problem of forgeries. The class will view and work with major art collections in Chicago, both private and public. H. Thomsen. Winter.
ARTH 28500/38500 History of International Cinema I: Silent Era. (=CMST 28500/48500, CMLT 22400/32400, ARTV 26500/36500, ENGL 29300/48700, MAPH 33600) PQ: CMST 10100 must be taken before or concurrently with this course. This is the first part of a two-quarter course. The two parts may be taken individually, but taking them in sequence is helpful. The aim of this course is to introduce students to what was singular about the art and craft of silent film. Its general outline is chronological; we also discuss main national schools and international trends of filmmaking. Y. Tsivian. Winter.
ARTH 28506/38506 Sinotopos: Approaches in Chinese Landscape Representation and Interpretation (=EALC 28506/38506) This course will survey major areas of study in the Chinese landscape painting tradition, focusing on the history of its pictorial representation during pre-modern eras. Format will be primarily class discussion, with some lectures. Art historical and methodological topics for consideration may include: first emergence and characteristics; theoretical foundations and genre development; major attributed works in relation to archaeological evidence in relation to aesthetic writings; landscape culture and values (imaging sacred sites, court painting and public space; literati painting, self-expression, and private consumption); topographic investigation in other fields (cultural geography, anthropology), the techniques of visual assessment (connoisseurship, structural analysis).
Emphasis is on artistic options and the exercise of choice within the context of social, political, religious, and economic forces. Students are expected to gain skills in formal analysis through looking with reading, and a critical perspective on the processes of art historical placement and interpretation (historical and modern) based on assigned readings in secondary literature. Prior coursework and Chinese language useful, but not required. Ping Foong. Autumn.
ARTH 28600/38600 History of International Cinema II. Sound Era to 1960. (=CMST 28600/48600, ARTV 26600, ENGL 29300/47800, MAPH 33600). This is the first part of a two-quarter course. The two parts may be taken individually, but taking them in sequence is helpful. For course description, see Cinema and Media Studies. Y. Tsivian.
ARTH 28904/38904 Antonioni's Films: Reality and Ambiguity. (=CMST 26801, BPRO 26600, HUMA 26602) PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing. In this in-depth study of about six of Antonioni's films, our eye will be on understanding his vision about "reality" and the element of ambiguity that pervades nearly all of his films. In some of his films, and in his published writings, Antonioni shows a strong interest in science and in the physical world. Together, as a film scholar and a physicist, we can bring out these aspects of his work together with his unique cinematic contributions. We believe that Antonioni is an artist of Joycean stature (and there are interesting parallels between the two) whose work often gets lumped into categories such as "new wave European cinema" and the like. The goal of the course is to introduce students to this poet of the cinema and to see the relevance of Antonioni's themes in their own studies and their own lives. As a course project, students might very well be asked to develop an idea based upon the unfilmed sketches, consistent with Antonioni's vision. Y. Tsivian. Winter.
ARTH 29500/39500 The Politics of Representation in American Art, 1935-1990s. The purpose of this course is to pursue major historical concerns and artistic themes in American art from 1935, the advent of the Popular Front, to the 1990s, the heart of postmodernism. The course combines historical, art historical and critical texts to offer the student a comprehensive view of both the history of American culture in the latter half of the 20th century and the role that history has played in the development of an American political identity. In addition to familiarizing the student with a broad range of themes within the history of American art, this course aims to offer students the tools with which to speak of art practices within broader historical, social and political contexts. C. Robbins, Spring.
ARTH 29600 Junior Seminar: Doing Art History. Required of third-year art history majors; open to nonmajors with consent of instructor. The aim of this seminar is to deepen an understanding of art history as a discipline and the range of analytic strategies it affords to students beginning to plan their own B.A. papers or, in the case of minors, writing research papers in art history courses. Students read essays that have shaped and represent the discipline, and test their wider applicability and limitations. Through this process, they develop a keener sense of the kinds of questions that most interest them in the history and criticism of art and visual culture. Students develop a formal topic proposal in a brief essay, and write a final paper analyzing one or two works of relevant, significant scholarship for their topics. This seminar is followed by an autumn-quarter fourth-year majors' workshop focusing on research and writing issues, designed to help BA paper writers advance their projects. P. Berlekamp. Winter.
ARTH 29700 Reading Course. PQ: Consent of instructor and Undergraduate Program Chair. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Form. Must be taken for a quality grade. With adviser's approval, art history majors may use this course to satisfy requirements for the major, a special field, or electives. This course is designed for students in art history or advanced nonmajors whose program requirements are best met by study under a faculty member's individual supervision. The subject, course of study, and requirements are arranged with the instructor. Autumn, Winter, Spring.
ARTH 29704/39704 Objects of Japanese History: The Buckley/Boone Collections. (=EALC 24806/34806, HIST 24602/34602) The Buckley Collection in the Smart Museum and the Boone Collection in the Field Museum will be examined as case studies in museum and collection research. The Buckley Collection was formed by Professor Edmund Buckley in 1886-92 and includes hundreds of Japanese objects that relate to various religious rituals and traditions. Objects include paintings, sculpture, and woodblock prints, in addition to temple maps, sutras, and religious talismans. The Boone Collection was collected in the 1950's by Commander Gilbert and Katherine Boone and includes over 3,000 Japanese objects. Individual objects will be examined, not only for religious, aesthetic, cultural, and historical issues, but also for what they tell us of the collections and of museum and collections studies in general. The course will be co-taught by Hans Thomsen from Art History and James Ketelaar of History Departments, who will include methods and texts from both disciplines. Several study trips will be made to the storage rooms of local museums. A selection from the collections will be exhibited in the Smart Museum, as a jointly curated student project. This is the second installment in a series of courses on museum/collection studies based on specific collections housed in local museums. In 2004/5 we focused on the Boone Collection in the Field Museum, this time we will focus on the Buckley and Boone Collections. H. Thomsen. J. Ketelaar. Spring.
ARTH 29800 Senior Seminar: Writing Workshop. Required of fourth-year art history majors. This workshop is designed to assist students in researching and writing their senior papers, for which they have already developed a topic in the Junior Seminar. Weekly meetings target different aspects of the process; students benefit from the guidance of the workshop instructors but also are expected to consult with their individual faculty advisers. At the end of the course, students are expected to have completed a first draft of the senior paper and to make an oral presentation of the project for the seminar. Staff. Autumn.
ARTH 29900 Preparation for the Senior Paper. PQ: Consent of instructor and Undergraduate Program Chair. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research Form. May be taken P/F with consent of instructor. This course provides guided research on the topic of the senior paper. The program of study and schedule of meetings are to be arranged with the student's senior paper adviser. Autumn, Winter, Spring.
ARTH 39800 Approaches to Art History. Through critical reading of various articles, essays, and books, members of this class analyze approaches to the practice of art history that have been characteristic of scholarship during the past 50 years. The emphasis is on premise, procedure, and the nature of evidence, as these can be ascertained in particular case studies instead of through their articulation in theoretical tracts; materials will be drawn from all corners of the discipline and efforts will be made to select studies that relate to students' fields of interest. Participants will be responsible for regular oral presentations and internet communications; the required long paper may be prepared in conjunction with another research project. Staff. Winter.
ARTH 40100 Art Historical Methodology. How do we do art history? What is it? What are its premises and where does it come from? This seminar will explore the historical foundations, formulations and applications of current art historical methods. Both theory and practice will be considered and critiqued through select texts, with especial focus on the problematics of art history as a distinct scholarly discipline today. Students will be responsible for discussions and class presentations. A paper applying particular methodological approaches is also required J. Snyder. Autumn.
ARTH 42105 Image and Religion in Late Antiquity: Pagan, Christian and Jew in Dura Europos (=CLAS, NTEC) This course will address the fundamental issues of how to construct ancient religions from the evidence of art. At stake are fraught methodological problems surrounding the contested scholarly investments in Christian origins and late ancient Judaism as well as pagan polytheism. By focusing on one canonically central site for this material from late antique Syria - whose wealth of wall paintings caused one of its excavators to call it the 'Eastern Pompeii' - we will explore the multiplicities of position and the range of assumptions entailed in (simultaneous but also competitive) archaeological and religious reconstruction. Dura's destruction and abandonment ca 257 ensured the survival of a series of pagan temples including a Mithraeum, and what are considered the oldest surviving Christian house-church and the most important and impressively decorated ancient synagogue. Not only these fundamental monuments for the study of late antique and early medieval art, but also the history of their publication, interpretation and re-presentation represents an historiographical record of immense interest, comprising a major early American intervention in Old World archaeology, the work of a series of such great theoreticians of religious history as Franz Cumont, Mikhail Rostovtzeff and E.R. Goodenough, and such history of effects as the academic invention of 'Jewish art' in the 1930s in both its Nazi and Zionist receptions. Intensive format; meets T, Th for 5 weeks, March 27-April 26 J. Elsner. M. Mitchell. Spring.
ARTH 42106 Arts of the Book in the Islamic World. This seminar offers an opportunity for in-depth consideration of methodological and theoretical issues as they pertain to the study of Islamic manuscripts. These include issues of representation, figuration, and abstraction in calligraphy, illumination, and painting; problems of copying and originality; challenges posed by manuscripts that have been altered by successive generations of users; and multiple levels of text-image relationships. Throughout the seminar we will consider points of congruence and divergence between how such issues were theorized in (translated) primary texts contemporaneous to the manuscripts being studied, and how they are theorized today. P. Berlekamp. Spring.
ARTH 42400 Love and War in Medieval Art and Literature. Love is a kind of war, and no assignment for cowards." Thus spoke Ovid in the Ars Amatoria with great pertinence to love and war in the Middle Ages and to the endeavors of this class. We will study two forms of vernacular writing and imagery: Arthurian romances and allegorical love poetry. Both of these forms were articulated in the incredibly rich 12th - 15th centuries, though often they refer to earlier periods. Both of these forms also interacted with that most troublesome (because uncontrolled) of all entities: the secular image. The texts and images of medieval love and war existed without the sanction or authority of sacred text (i.e. the Bible in its many medieval manifestations). This "unmoored" quality resulted in an especially productive, volatile and fascinating interaction between orality, visuality, memory, writing, and transmission. Among other texts and images, we will study those of the Arthurian romances of Chr*tien de Troyes and the Pearl Poet, and the Roman de la Rose of Guillaume de Lorris and Jean de Meun. A. Harris. Spring.
ARTH 42404 Japanese Woodblock Prints: Osaka Prints and Regionalism. (=EALC 40406) Advanced course in the study of Japanese woodblock prints. Topics of classroom discussion will include case studies of individual prints, the deciphering of information on prints (including reading practices for those with knowledge in Japanese), and topics such as regionalism, Kabuki and theater prints, the Yoshiwara and erotica, use of prints in Buddhist rituals, museum and collection studies, and the relationship between literature and images. The students will also take part in the ongoing research of a major collection of Osaka prints, which is scheduled to be exhibited in the fall of 2008. In addition, several field trips will be organized to view local print collections, including that of the Art Institute of Chicago. Student presentations and papers are encouraged within a wide scope of topics (both with and without reading knowledge of Japanese) including topics such as Japonisme and the Western reception of Japanese woodblock prints. H. Thomsen. Winter.
ARTH 42600 Skills and Methods in Chinese Painting History. This course aims to provide groundwork skills in conducting primary research in the study of Chinese painting history. Emphasis will be on resources standard to the study of early periods, especially the Song and Yuan Dynasties. To conduct material investigation of medium (silk, paper, mounting, ink, color) in conjunction with relevant sinological tools for provenance (identification and judging the authenticity of seals, inscriptions). To develop proficiency in the use of primary/historical and reference sources through an investigation of their strengths and limitations, such as dictionaries (encyclopedic, bibliographic, biographical, etc), database queries (Siku quanshu, GeNii, etc), etc. Weekly task-based reports. Final research strategy paper may include discussion of methodological choice. Individual projects can be object centered or oriented to a particular aspect of a Museum collection. Language requirements: Chinese and Japanese (reading). Ping Foong. Spring.
ARTH 43000 Giorgione: Connoisseurship and Meaning In an attempt to understand the origin and early phases of the High Renaissance in Venice, this course will concentrate on the central, very problematic, figure of Giorgione, but its scope will include the first three decades of the sixteenth century and such artists as the late Bellini, Titian, Sebastino del Piombo, Palma Vecchio and others. Since the definition of Giorgione's oeuvre is perhaps the most important unresolved issue of Renaissance connoisseurship, a considerable amount of class time will be devoted to the practice of connoisseurship and the discussion of its possibilities, limitations and theoretical assumptions. The second major theme of the course is Giorgione's new attitudes towards subject matter and innovations in pictorial types (e.g. landscape, meaning in portraiture), which seem to have led to some of the most discussed iconographical puzzles in Eastern art (e.g., Tempest, Three, Philosophers, Fete Champetre). Students will have the option of doing seminar reports that focus on any of a wide range of methods and approaches including connoisseurship, style, history of pictorial types, emblematic iconography, intellectual history, history of taste and collecting, and whatever else they can credibly propose. C. Cohen. Spring.
ARTH 43400 Asia Minor Seminar (=CLAS 40400) Western Asia Minor is one of the richest archaeological landscapes of the Mediterranean. Unlike many other economically, politically, and culturally significant areas of the Classical World, Western Asia Minor ceased to flourish after the end of antiquity and remained sparsely populated. Ancient sites are exceptionally well preserved and have been a focus of archaeological research for the past 120 years. The rich archaeological, epigraphical, and literary record allows for studying the historical development of Asia Minor in greater detail than that of almost any other region of the Classical World. This seminar will delineate the rise of the Greek poleis in the coastal areas, their various interactions with indigeneous populations and the Achaemenid Empire, the economical, social, and cultural upheavals of the Hellenistic Period, and the multi-faceted urban life of the Imperial Period. The wide scope of the course is intended to provide the background for a month-long University-sponsored study trip to Western Turkey in the summer of 2007. Students who successfully complete the course will be considered first for joining the excursion. E. Mayer. Winter.
ARTH 44506 The Sight of Sound in Early Modern Europe (=MUSC 44506) This class will bring students from different disciplines together to examine the representation of music in, and the soundscape of, selected visual media (largely painting and prints) between about 1520 and 1670. We will examine both topics (e.g. music and eroticism) and cultural situations (e.g. domestic music and painting in the Low Countries). Students will use their own knowledge in order to teach each other fundamental concepts of critical terminology and analytic approach in 'their' discipline, while learning the relevant categories of another field in the process. We will also consider several parallels (and differences) in early modern aesthetics of music and painting, using source texts. Students' work will culminate in a class presentation and research paper. R. Kendrick. Autumn. (Mondays 9-11:50 Regenstein 264)
ARTH 45500 Neuronal Aesthetics Recently seeing has become an even more amazing process. Findings concerning the internal circuitry of the visual brain, insights into brain architecture, biology, psychology, new media, and computation suggest that the domain of aesthetics must be re-defined. This seminar will explore how neurology, optical technology, and both old and new media do and might intersect to create a new area of study. B. Stafford. Winter.
ARTH 45906 Looking and Listening in 19th Century France. It is by now well known that the attention paid to objects in the world, or to the sounds of nature or music, cannot be taken for granted as historically constant; rather, the habits and values associated with different kinds of attention change over time. Emphasizing the latter half of the nineteenth century in France, this course will historicize two broad types of attention: looking and listening. During the nineteenth century, visual culture was proliferating at an unprecedented rate; technologies for looking and listening were in a rapid stage of development; and the social settings for those activities (Salons, gallery shows, Universal Expositions, concerts, recitals in the home, and so on) were also in flux. At the end of the century, the burgeoning science of psychology was focusing inquiry on the variable nature of consciousness. The reception of art, whether in public exhibitions and more private venues, will be a major theme of the course but we will also treat other forms of attention like music listening. We will consider the impact that technological innovations had on shaping forms of attention, and analyze examples of how artists came to respond to these new conditions, creating works of art that call for particular kinds of attention from viewers or listeners, or works that themselves thematize attention. Apart from works of art in the Smart Museum collection, the course's tools for study will include critical and theoretical texts from the period, as well as a wide variety of visual materials?from caricatures and popular prints to illustrated books and revues to fine arts prints and paintings.
The course will begin with a set of interdisciplinary readings on various subjects - the nature of attention, the social constitution of audiences, the changing design of places for viewing and listening. We will then proceed to pose a set of questions to particular visual representations that thematize attention. In pursing these research questions, the seminar will advance towards the construction of an exhibition to be held at the Smart Museum in the fall, 2007, and an accompanying catalogue, to include some of the works that we have analyzed. Basic knowledge of French 19th century art history required; reading knowledge of French highly desirable. M. Ward. A. Leonard. Spring.
ARTH 46604 Whose Paris? Walter Benjamin famously described Paris as the capital of the nineteenth century, and his archival, uncompleted Arcades Project gave that epithet, thanks to recent publications, a very long life. However complex Benjamin's characterization of this proto-modernist capital, the term carries implications of dominion. Paris is equally the city of the commune, the insurrectional and ungovernable metropolis, less the capital than a figure and object of contention. We will read interpretations of Paris from the point of view of who Paris can be said to belong to, from the Enlightenment to recent times, considering them in light of how modern Paris has changed material form. Seminar members will assume responsibility for different moments in the city's history, helping us to examine our readings from materialist and historical as well as methodological perspectives. Research paper, in oral and written versions. K. Taylor. Winter.
ARTH 48206 Dunhuang Visual Culture: Traditions and Interactions (=EALC 48206) This course conceptualizes Dunhuang as a hub of cultural and artistic interactions along the Silk Road. Students are encouraged to become familiar with a wide range of visual and textual evidence, to contemplate the roles of different ethnic and religious communities in art making, and to explore the relationship between visual cultures of different religious systems. Combined with reviews of previous scholarship, such inquiries raise questions about methods in studying Medieval Chinese art. Wu Hung. Winter.
ARTH 48301 Aesthetics of French Classicism. (=FREN 35501,CMLT 35600) Though "aesthetic" philosophy first developed as an autonomous field in the mid-eighteenth century, it has important roots in earlier eighteenth- and seventeenth-century debates concerning literature and the arts. In the wake of Cartesian rationalism, could reasoned method be reconciled with non-rational creativity, or decorous order with the unruly "sublime"? Just what kind of "truth" was revealed by poetry or painting? Readings will include Boileau, Racine, Perrault, Du Bos, Montesquieu, Voltaire and Diderot, as well as the French reception of British writings on the subject by Pope, Addison and others. Reading knowledge of French required. L. Norman. Spring.
ARTH 48406 The Ethiopian Zion. This seminar considers Ethiopia as a site of religious art and architecture as well as an idea of a promised land that over time has found visual expression in Africa and the African diaspora. Monumental obelisks at Aksum, Christian Ethiopia's rock-hewn churches and narrative wall paintings, and popular murals of the Ethiopian victory over the Italian colonial army contribute forcefully to the image of a sacred homeland. We will examine the visual discourse of 'Ethiopianism' in Marcus Garvey's Back-to-Africa Movement and the Rastafari religion, as well as the place of Ethiopia in the contemporary production of artist-scholars exiled to the U.S. during the period of iconoclasm and repression under the Marxist Derg military junta, 1974-1991. Participants will study The Miracles of Mary, a 17th c. illuminated manuscript at The Art Institute of Chicago and visit the local Ethiopian Orthodox Church of Medhane Alem. J. Levin. Autumn.
ARTH 48506 Issues and Problematics of German Expressionism in Art, Literature and Film. (=GRMN 48500)This seminar will explore aspects of German Expressionism and its influences and implications as manifested in the visual arts, design and the physical environment, in literature and in film in the 20th century. R. Heller. Winter.
ARTH 48706 New Art of the 1960s and 1970s: Redefining Reality. This seminar will address critical issues of the late 1960s and 70s, concentrating on conceptual art. Basic familiarity with art of the period is required. A. Rorimer. Autumn.
ARTH 48900 Space, Place, Landscape. (=CMLT 50900,CMST 69200, ENGL 60301)
This seminar will analyze the concepts of space, place, and landscape across the media (painting, photography, cinema, sculpture, architecture, and garden design, as well as poetic and literary renderings of setting, and "virtual" media-scapes). Key theoretical readings from a variety of disciplines, including geography, art history, literature, and philosophy will be included: Foucault's "Of Other Spaces," Michel de Certeau's concept of heterotopia; Heidegger's "Art and Space"; Gaston Bachelard's The Poetics of Space; Henri Lefebvre's Production of Space; David Harvey's Geography of Difference; Raymond Williams's The Country and the City; Mitchell, Landscape and Power. Topics for discussion will include the concept of the picturesque and the rise of landscape painting in Europe; the landscape garden; place, memory, and identity; sacred sites and holy lands; regional, global, and national landscapes; embodiment and the gendering of space; the genius of place; literary and textual space.
Course requirements: 2 oral presentations: one on a place (or representation of a place); the other on a critical or theoretical text. Final paper. Consent of Instructor Required: Submit a statement of your proposed seminar project to firstname.lastname@example.org by 9/22/06 indicating what specific aspect of space, place, and landscape you would like to explore, and what particular theoretical resources and archives you intend to develop. Statements should be one page single-spaced, and be accompanied by a short list of the texts you regard as most crucial to your research. Indicate what department and what level you are in. Preference to ENGL / ARTH / CMST / CMLT PhDs and then other outstanding applicants. WJT Mitchell. Autumn.
ARTH 49206 Conceptual Art: Theory and History. (=ARTV 39200) In 1969, the conceptual artist Joseph Kosuth wrote, "If one is questioning the nature of painting, one cannot be questioning the nature of art." If traditional media produced accounts of experience that lacked this crucial measure of self-reflexivity, Kosuth wondered, then what would constitute a vital and self-aware art practice in the information age? Conceptual artists in the 1960s and 1970s not only reconsidered the status of the art object, they also created a diverse body of remarkable and often enigmatic works of art. This seminar concentrates on episodes in the history of conceptual art in Asia, Europe, and the Americas. M. Jackson. Spring.
ARTH 49600 Museum Cultures. (=HIST 48900) The colloquium will examine the modern (post-1800) history of the museum, concentrating upon the United States and emphasizing (without excluding other types) the evolution of the art museum. Issues of patronage, public support, collecting, advocacy, commercial linkages, categorization, and display will be among those addressed. N. Harris. Autumn (T 3:00-5:50 p.m.)
ARTH 49800 Independent Research: Art. Staff. Spring.
ARTH 49900 Historiography of Art History. This course examines methodologies in art history, theory, and criticism through the rigorous analysis of selected texts in these fields. The intent is to aid graduate student in the discernment of art history's relationship to other disciplines, as well as their own practices within (or outside of) it. Offered to 1st and 2nd year graduate students. M. Olin. Winter.
ARTH 50200 Dissertation Proposal Writing Workshop. This faculty-led workshop is intended for Ph.D. candidates who expect to apply for major dissertation research fellowships for the first time in the following Autumn quarter. Participants draft proposals of about 5 pages, plus a one-page selected bibliography, to standards suitable for fellowship competitions. After an organizational meeting, there will be two substantial workshops at which participants analyze one another's proposals to identify ways to strengthen them to reach their intended readership effectively. Art history doctoral students should register for "R" or audit credit only. B. Stafford. Spring.