2012-2013

Last updated: March 15, 2013

Autumn | Winter | Spring

Faculty

N. Atkinson, H. Badamo, P. Berlekamp, C. Brittenham, C. Cohen, J. Elsner, D. English, P. Foong, C. Foxwell, C. Fromont, T. Gunning, E. Helsinger, M. Jackson, A. Kumler, L. Lee, A. Leonard, C. Mehring, S. Miller, R. Neer, J. Snyder, K. Taylor, M. Ward, H. Wu, R. Zorach

Courses: Art History (ARTH)

Autumn 2012

Undergraduate Courses

10100. Introduction to Art. Students must attend first class to confirm enrollment. For nonmajors, this course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. 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 importantly, 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.

14000 through 16999. Art Surveys. May be taken in sequence or individually. Students must attend first class to confirm enrollment. For nonmajors, any ARTH 14000 through 16999 course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. The major monuments and masterpieces of world painting, sculpture, and architecture are studied as examples of humankind’s achievements in the visual arts. Individual objects are analyzed in detail and interpreted in light of society’s varied needs. While changes in form, style, and function are emphasized, an attempt is also made to understand the development of unique and continuous traditions of visual imagery throughout world civilization. Courses focus on broad regional and chronological categories.

14200. From Missionary Images to Image Explosion: Introduction to Medieval Art. This course explores the challenging world of medieval art. Beginning with the fourth-century fusion of Imperial and Christian images and ending with the advent of print, we trace how images and art-making took on new roles—and re-invented old ones—over the course of the Middle Ages. We consider architecture, sculpture, wall-painting, manuscript painting, stained glass, metalwork, and textiles in their historical contexts, questioning why medieval objects look the way they do and how they were seen and used by medieval viewers. Readings include medieval sources (in translation) and exemplary modern scholarship. A. Kumler.

14307. Greek Art and Archaeology I: From the Bronze Age to the Persian Wars. This course will survey the art and archaeology of the ancient Greek world from the Bronze Age to the Persian Wars (480 BC). We will study early civilizations of Minoan Crete and Mycenaean Greece, and their dramatic collapse in the twelfth century BC. We will then see the emergence of a new political and social system based on city-states, featuring distinctive forms of sculpture, architecture, pottery, and urban design. Along the way, students will acquire a conceptual toolkit for looking at works of art and for thinking about the relation of art to social life. The big question is: how can we make sense of the past by means of artifacts? R. Neer.

15510. The Visual Arts in American Culture, 1839-1945. This course introduces students to multiple modes of art's production and reception from the Jacksonian era to World War II. The arts in the U.S. have never been limited to an elite tradition of painting and sculpture; indeed much of their vitality derives from interchange between European academic models of art and the popular, vernacular, and mass-media visual forms developed in the Americas. Our subjects will include monuments, landscape and urban design, architecture, mural and easel painting, popular prints and illustration, photography and avant-garde cinema, public and private forms of patronage and collecting, and the establishment and aspirations of civic art museums. This course requires a weekly discussion section in Weeks 3-8. Some written assignments will require visits to local museums. S. Miller.

15600. 20th Century Art. A survey class that will revolve around issues central or unique to the 20th century, including abstraction, traditional and new media, art and politics, mass-produced design and culture. We will consider different conceptions of modern art that emerged during this period—for example, "modernism," "avant-garde," or "postmodernism"—and the ways in which such understandings overlapped or differed, actively fostered exchange, rejected or influenced one another. Artists to be discussed include Pablo Picasso, Wassily Kandinsky, Jackson Pollock, Andy Warhol, and Cindy Sherman. Meetings and assignments will make use of local collections such as the Smart Museum and the Art Institute of Chicago. No familiarity with art history is required. M. J. Jackson.

16003. Art of Mesoamerica. This course provides an introduction to the art and architecture of Mesoamerica, a region that encompasses much of modern-day Mexico and northern Central America. We will examine sculpture, painting, architecture, ceramics, and other arts of the Olmec, Maya, Aztec, and other Mesoamerican civilizations over a period of three millennia, from ca. 1500 B.C. to the time of the Spanish invasion in 1519. We will study sacred art, courtly art, architecture and urbanism, writing systems and their relation to images, and the interactions between artistic traditions. C. Brittenham.

16100. Art of Asia: China. This course is an introduction to the arts of China focusing on major monuments and artworks produced in imperial, aristocratic, literati, religious, and public milieus. Lectures will reconstruct the functions and the meanings of objects, and to better understand Chinese culture through the objects it produced. Q. Ngan.

17000 through 18999. Art in Context. Students must attend first class to confirm enrollment. For nonmajors, any ARTH 17000 through 18999 course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. Courses in this series investigate basic methods of art historical analysis and apply them to significant works of art studied within definite contexts. Works of art are placed in their intellectual, historical, cultural, or more purely artistic settings in an effort to indicate the origins of their specific achievements. An informed appreciation of the particular solutions offered by single works and the careers of individual artists emerges from the detailed study of classic problems within Western and non-Western art.

17410. Frank Lloyd Wright in Chicago and Beyond. This course looks at Wright's work from multiple angles, examining his architecture, urbanism, relationship to the built environment and socio-cultural context of his lifetime, and legend. We'll take advantage of the Robie House on campus, and of the rich legacy of Wright’s early work in Chicago; we'll also think about his later "Usonian" houses for middle-income clients and the urban framework he imagined for his work ("Broadacre City"), as well as his Wisconsin headquarters (Taliesin), and spectacular works like the Johnson Wax Factory (a required one-day Friday field trip, if funds permit), Fallingwater, and the Guggenheim Museum. By examining one architect's work in context, students will gain experience analyzing buildings and their siting, and interpreting them in light of their complex ingredients and circumstances. The overall goal is to provide an introduction to thinking about architecture and urbanism. K. Taylor.

17707. Materiality as Meaning: Art from 1950 to the Present. This course investigates art after 1950 through specific ways artists have exploited non-traditional materials and their properties for symbolic significance and affective power. By working in chocolate or latex, urban detritus or industrial waste, painters and sculptors have not only pushed against conventional modes of art-making, but have responded to contemporary society. We will pay particular attention to the economic, political, and social contexts that give meaning to a given choice of artistic materials and means of production. Do such choices respond to post-war privation, to planned obsolescence in advanced capitalism, or to the impact of globalization on developing nations? Are they charged with private meaning or do they claim to have universal impact? How does exacerbated materiality alter viewer-object relations by eliciting affective responses like revulsion, alienation, identification, and attraction? This seminar will approach major American and European artistic movements after 1950—including arte povera, proto-pop, minimalism, process art, feminist performance, and installation art—through their expanded material repertoires. L. Lee.

18305. New Art in Chicago Museums and Other Spaces. Through very regular, required site visits to museums, galleries, and experimental spaces in the greater Chicago area, this course introduces students to the close consideration—in situ—of works of art created in and for our time, as well as to pertinent modes of critical and historical inquiry. Sites visited can include our own Smart Museum of Art, the Hyde Park Art Center, the Art Institute of Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Gallery 400 at the University of Illinois at Chicago, and private collections and galleries. Enrollment strictly limited to 12 with instructor consent required. D. English.

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, students who are majoring in art history may use this course to satisfy requirements for the major, a special field, or electives. This course is also open to non-majors with advanced standing. This course is primarily intended for students who are majoring in art history and who can best meet program requirements by study under a faculty member's individual supervision. The subject, course of study, and requirements are arranged with the instructor.

29800. Senior Seminar: Writing Workshop. Required of fourth-year students who are majoring in art history. 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 complete a first draft of the senior paper and to make an oral presentation of the project for the seminar.

Undergraduate and Graduate Courses

24030/34030. Sexuality Studies in American Art. Taking the recent, controversial exhibition Hide/Seek: Difference & Desire in American Portraiture as our springboard, this course examines the plural strategies by which sexuality studies (in modes ranging from feminist history to psychoanalysis to queer theory) have been brought to bear on the canon of modern American art over the past thirty years, and the ways they have refigured our investigative methods, our objects of study, and the canon itself. Treating sexuality as a multivalent force in the creation of modern art and culture (rather than merely as subject), our topics will range from the 1870s to the 1960s—the years before artistic engagements with sexuality and gender were radically transformed by postmodernism and contemporary identity politics. Case studies will include the work of, and recent scholarship about, Thomas Eakins, John Singer Sargent, the Stieglitz circle (Charles Demuth, Georgia O'Keeffe), the trans-Atlantic "New Women" of the 1920s (Berenice Abbott, Romaine Brooks), the downtown bohemian and uptown Harlem Renaissance scenes of 1920s-30s New York, Joseph Cornell, Jasper Johns & Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, and Eva Hesse. Readings are drawn from recent art historical and key theoretical texts, with an emphasis on methodological analysis. S. Miller.

24110/34110. Venetian Painting from Bellini to Tintoretto. The works of Giovanni Bellini, Giorgione, Titian, Tintoretto and other major figures are studied in the context of the distinctive Venetian version of the Renaissance. The course will explore the patterns of patronage, iconography and practice as they are impacted by the Venetian cult of the state, the role of the great charitable institutions in Venetian society, the conservative Venetian guild and workshop organization. Some of the major art-historical themes will include the understanding of Giorgione and Giorgionism as a decisive turn towards modernity in European art; the complex place of the long-lived Titian throughout the entire period; the role of drawing in an art most noted for its light, color and touch; the complex interaction of Venetian and Tusco-Roman visual cultures throughout the Renaissance. C. Cohen.

24812/34812. Museums and Art. This course considers how the rise of the art museum in the 19th and 20th centuries affected the making of modern art and the viewing of past art. It is not designed to be a survey course, but rather a historical investigation of certain issues and developments. We will concentrate on the following: what has been said to happen to objects when they are uprooted and moved into the museum; how and why museums have changed display practices so as to get viewers to look at art in new ways; what artists have understood museums to represent and how they have responded to that understanding in their work and their display preferences. Though reference will be made to the contemporary art world, the focus will be on materials and case studies drawn from the French Revolution through the 1960s. French, German, English and American museums will be featured. M. Ward.

26803/36803. Enlightenment and 19th-Century Architectural Theory and Practice. This course examines influential new ideas about architectural design from the Enlightenment and nineteenth century in terms of writings and related buildings in Europe and the U.S. This experimental period generated theoretical writing that continues to matter to architects today; we will study it in terms of its initial contexts and application. Major themes are: (1) the relationship of a building’s structure to its decoration (or body to clothing, as it was sometimes put); (2) the rise of historical interest in older buildings from divergent stylistic traditions (e.g., classical and Gothic) and its impact on new design; (3) the development of aesthetic theory suited to mass as well as elite audiences (e.g., the sublime and the picturesque); and (4) the idea that architect and building could and should be ethical or socially reformative. K. Taylor.

26910/36910. Visual Culture of Rome and its Empire. (=CLCV 27909,CLAS 37909) 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.

27304/37304. Photo/Modernism/Esthetic. The course presents the history of photographic practices in the United States, beginning in the late nineteenth century and extending into the 1980s, aimed at gaining an audience for photographs within museums of art. The issues under study include the contention over claims about medium specificity, notions of photographic objectivity,a peculiarly photographic esthetics, the division of photography into two categories—art vs. documentary— and the role of tradition and canon formation in the attempted definition of the photographic medium. J. Snyder.

Graduate Courses

40100. Art History Methodology. D. English. 

41399. The Visual Culture of Opera in Late Imperial China. (=EALC 41399) The passion for opera throughout China during the late imperial period was not restricted to the stage but permeated the visual and material landscape of everyday life, from the court on down. Operatic characters and stories were favored as pictorial and decorative motifs across the full spectrum of visual mediums from tomb carvings and scroll paintings to popular prints, illustrated books, and painted fans, to carved utensils, ceramics, textiles, dioramas, and photographs. In preparation for an exhibition to be held at the Smart in 2014, students will research the representation of Chinese opera and its significance in a variety of visual, textual, and material forms. J. Zeitlin.

43220. Select Topics in the Study of Western Illuminated Manuscripts. This seminar will critically explore select issues in the study of western medieval illuminated manuscripts. Not a chronological survey of western manuscript painting in the Middle Ages, the seminar will instead investigate topics of current art historical and historiographic significance, potentially including: the relationships between manuscript painting and textual traditions and sources; the role of monastic cultures of reading, meditation, religious practice on visual programs, modes of production and reception; the rise of the professional lay illuminator in relationship to changes in the locales, methods and means of book production in the later Middle Ages; the changing role of connoisseurship in the study of illumination, past and present; the critical evaluation of artistic conservatism and innovation in the context of manuscript painting; the interaction of genre, function, audience, and patronage in the creation and reception of programs of illumination; the interaction between drawing and painting in the manuscript context; the interplay between forms of vernacularity and visuality. Some familiarity with medieval visual or manuscript culture will be advantageous; reading competence in French &/or German is desirable, but not required. Interested students should contact Prof. Kumler in advance. A. Kumler.

44502. The Aesthetics of Socialist Realism. (=RUSS 34502,CMST 44510) Socialist Realism was declared the official mode of Soviet aesthetic culture in 1934. Though it has been dismissed within the totalitarian model as propaganda or kitsch, this seminar will approach it from the perspective of its aesthetics. By this we mean not only its visual or literary styles, but also its sensory or haptic address to its audiences. Our premise is that the aesthetic system of Socialist Realism was not simply derivative or regressive, but developed novel techniques of transmission and communication; marked by a constant theoretical reflection on artistic practice, Socialist Realism redefined the relationship between artistic and other forms of knowledge, such as science. Operating in an economy of art production and consumption diametrically opposed to the Western art market, Socialist Realism challenged the basic assumptions of Western artistic discourse, including the concept of the avant-garde. It might even be said to offer an alternate model of revolutionary cultural practice, involving the chronicling and producing of a non-capitalist form of modernity. The seminar will focus on Soviet visual art, cinema and fiction during the crucial period of the 1930s under Stalin (with readings available in translation), but we welcome students with relevant research interests that extend beyond these parameters. Conducted jointly by professors Robert Bird (Slavic and Cinemaand Media Studies, University of Chicago) and Christina Kiaer, Art History, Northwestern University, course meetings will be divided evenly between the campuses of Northwestern University and the University of Chicago. R. Bird and C. Kiaer.

44600. Theories of Art and Nature in Early Modern Europe. This seminar will involve intensive readings in selected 16th-18th c. texts (largely scientific) on the relationship of art and nature. Readings will be done in Latin and English (where available). Authors may include Girolamo Cardano, Levinus Lemnius, Ulisse Aldrovandi, Giordano Bruno, Francis Bacon, Athanasius Kircher, and Immanuel Kant. We will make frequent reference to images, secondary literature, and ancient texts. Paper topics may be drawn from students' own fields. Qualified undergraduates may be admitted. R. Zorach.

45202. The Uncanny in Cinema. (=CMST 65202) The uncanny is an experience or quality that by definition remains difficult to grasp: something that is mysterious and enigmatic, yet also seems oddly familiar. To explore this term this seminar will draw largely on a tradition of commentary on the German word Das Unheimliche, usually translated as uncanny, that can be trace among Ernst Jentsch, Sigmund Freud and Martin Heidegger and it relevance to film and media studies. Freud and his disciple Otto Rank before 1920 related the uncanny to the cinema, and cinema’s ability to evoke the uncanny has been frequently observed. On the one hand, the cinema’s ability to portray uncanny events (as in Rank and Freud’s invocation of the 1913 film The Student of Prague) appears generically in films of fantasy or horror. In addition, some theorists have felt that film as a medium could be best approached via the uncanny. In this seminar we will read a series of the keys texts and try to survey the terrain of the concept of the uncanny. We will screen films that evoke the experience through their narrative and stylistics, and we will discuss the usefulness of the term for theorizing both film and electronic media, both new and old. T. Gunning.

48208. Research on Dunhuang Caves. This course systematically examines the interrelationship between the 492 Buddhist cave-chapels at Dunhuang in terms of their pictorial and architectural program, spatial relationship, construction sequence, and patronage. It is hoped that this investigation will lay a methodological basis to envision a new history of Dunhuang caves. Chinese reading ability required. H. Wu.

50100. Art History Department Teaching Colloquium. Led by a faculty member each fall, this seminar meets weekly for 80 minutes, to address various topics through discussion with visitors (especially department faculty members) and occasionally through discussion of assigned readings. On the premise that one learns the most about teaching not well in advance but rather by reflecting with peer and senior colleagues on techniques and problems when one is in the midst of the challenge, this forum is meant to address participants' specific concerns and experiences, especially those related to art history. The quarter's topics are determined with student input and may include: the structure of the art history college core course program in which all faculty and students teach; the jobs of course assistant and writing intern; instructor authority and classroom dynamics; leading discussion; effective lecturing; strategic use of pictures in classroom teaching; small-group class projects; designing and grading assignments; designing syllabi. From year to year, the colloquium may address similar topics but the emphasis and tips will change depending on the participants. The department requires third-year students to participate fully in the colloquium, register for credit, and earn a Pass. More advanced students who have previously taken the colloquium are welcome to return on an occasional or regular basis to share experiences, strategies, and to seek advice on new teaching challenges. M. Ward. Required of third year students.

Winter 2013

Undergraduate Courses

10100. Introduction to Art. Students must attend first class to confirm enrollment. For nonmajors, this course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. 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 importantly, 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.

14400. Italian Renaissance Art. This course is a selective survey of the major monuments, personalities, and issues in the Italian art from around 1400 to 1550, with a look back at the 14th Century. At the same time, it attempts to introduce students with little or no background in art history to approaches, methods, or tools for looking at, thinking about, even responding to works of art. The origins and value of broad style groupings such as Late Gothic, Early Renaissance, High Renaissance and Mannerism will be critically examined, though we will concentrate on fewer artists and works rather than attempt a uniform survey of the vast body of material at the core of the Western tradition. Attention will also be given to the invention and development of distinctive artistic types and their association with particular moments in history (e.g., the "sacred conversation" altarpiece, centrally planned church, landscape painting). A major theme of the course will be the changing social context for the practice of art and with it the evolving nature of artistic creativity. The ability to talk critically and creatively about text and image will be the focus of required biweekly section meetings. C. Cohen.

14407. Greek Art and Archaeology II: From the Persian Wars to the Coming of Rome.(=CLCV 21807) This course will survey the art and archaeology of the ancient Greek world from the Persian Wars (480 BC) to the rise of Rome (ca. 1st century BC). Major themes will include the place of Greece within a larger Near Eastern and Mediterranean context; the relation of art and empire; the cultural dynamics of ethnic strife; and the relation of art to philosophy. Along the way, students will acquire a conceptual toolkit for looking at works of art and for thinking about the relation of art to social life. The big question is: how can we make sense of the past by means of artifacts? R. Neer.

16109. Art of Asia: Korea. This course is an introduction to the visual arts of Korea from prehistory to the contemporary period and is organized both chronologically and thematically. The course considers objects within a variety of contexts (i.e. archaeological, cultural, historical, social, and ritual/religious) to both examine the meaning and function of the objects and to consider the issues of cultural transmission and exchange. In addition to better understand Korean culture, the aim of the course is to develop the skills of formal analysis, critical thinking, and writing about visual arts. E. Hyun.

17015. Blood, Sweat, and Tears: The Sacred Image in Byzantium. During the Middle Ages, icons—sacred images—played a pivotal role in the devotional practice of Byzantium, the eastern Christian empire that had its capital in Constantinople from 324-1453. “Windows to heaven,” sacred images provided access to the divine. Despite their spiritual function, icons also drew attention to their materiality by erupting into life — bleeding, weeping, and attacking foes. In this course, we will combine the study of Byzantine images with Byzantine primary sources (in translation) to explore a range of topics related to the icon, including medieval image theory, iconoclasm, visuality, enshrinement, the copy, and materiality. Our investigation of Byzantine images will be enhanced through comparison with responses to the image in Islam, Judaism, and the Christian west. H. Badamo.

17505. The Black Arts Movement in Chicago. This course studies the 1960s-1970s Black Arts Movement in Chicago, in particular its visual artists, in the broader context of African American art and artists in Chicago from the 1940s to the 1990s. The class will make frequent trips to the South Side Community Art Center at 3831 S. Michigan Ave. Topics include the relationship of art to political militancy, the place of history, the formation of a "Black aesthetic," text-image relations, and the uses of different media (painting and sculpture, printmaking, performance). Students in the course will work together to curate an exhibition. No art history expertise is required, but willingness to work independently and as a group is essential. R. Zorach.

18700. The Arts of Arabic and Persian Manuscripts. This undergraduate art-in-context course focuses on Islamic arts of the book from the eleventh through sixteenth centuries. We will pay particular attention to relationships between painting, calligraphy, and illumination; problems of copying and originality; challenges posed by manuscripts that have been altered by successive generations of users; multiple levels of text-image relationships; and identify special considerations related to the manuscript format. 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.

20208. The Egyptian Pyramids. (=NEAA 20208) Pyramids are one of the most iconic images from ancient Egypt and this course will explore them in depth. We will discuss the architectural development of pyramids and their accompanying complexes throughout Egyptian history as well as their religious significance. The class will culminate in an examination of pyramids outside of the pharaonic sphere including their use by non-royals as well as non-Egyptians, their place in early archaeological exploration and the use of the form in more modern times.  J. Henderson.

24500. Arts in Italy and France in the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries. The course will present the evolution of art in Italy and France in the fields of painting, sculpture and architecture from the early Seventeenth Century to the middle of the Eighteenth century. In Italy, we will examine the 'classicist' reform of the Carracci and the quest for a naturalistic painting with Caravaggio, up to the assertion of the baroque figurative language (Bernini, Pietro da Cortona, Borromini) and the extraordinary narrative freedom of Tiepolo. We will see how Italy represents for France, throughout this period, both a model to emulate and surpass, both artistically and institutionally. Poussin and Lorrain are good examples of how fundamental Italy’s lessons were to French artists of this time. We will also see how France aims at the development of a national art. While a prime example being the Galerie des glaces in Versailles, the assertion of rococo is to be seen in the very particular context of the peaceful years of the beginning of the reign of Louis XV. S. Caviglia-Brunel.

25300. Early 20th Century East Asian Art. This course will examine modern artistic production in China, Japan and Korea from 1900 to 1945. We will study the formation of modern aesthetic theories, the experience of the project of modernism, and the problematic terms of "modernization" and "Westernization" against the background of tremendous political and social upheaval across East Asia. The rise of various literary and artistic movements came into dialogue with other international trends in imperial Japan, but also took on a life of their own in the cities of Seoul and Shanghai as artists traveled and documented their impressions of the rapidly changing modern world. Topics to be discussed include the institutionalization of art training, the formation of public exhibition spaces, the emergence of the modern artist as a cultural figure, the simultaneous search for the "avant-garde" that was accompanied by a self-reflexive nostalgic look back to the past, and the transformation of traditional mediums and subject matter in new forums such as the explosion of images of beautiful women in print media. N. Lin.

29600. Junior Seminar: Doing Art History. Required of third-year students who are majoring in art history; open to non-majors with consent of instructor. The aim of this seminar is to deepen an understanding of art history as a discipline and of the range of analytic strategies art history affords to students beginning to plan their own BA papers or, in the case of students who are minoring in art history, 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 a workshop in Autumn Quarter focusing on research and writing issues for fourth-year students who are majoring in art history, which is designed to help writers of BA papers advance their projects. C. Brittenham.

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, students who are majoring in art history may use this course to satisfy requirements for the major, a special field, or electives. This course is also open to non-majors with advanced standing. This course is primarily intended for students who are majoring in art history and who can best meet program requirements by study under a faculty member's individual supervision. The subject, course of study, and requirements are arranged with the instructor.

Undergraduate and Graduate Courses

22409/32409. Late Antique Treasures. Taking advantage of the opportunity afforded by the Art Institute's special exhibition of hallmarks of Late Roman and Early Byzantine art (ca. 300-600 C.E.) from the British Museum, this class will consider what treasured objects from Late Antiquity meant in their original contexts, and what they mean today in the context of the world’s encyclopedic museums. We will first examine in detail works of art produced in luxurious media, primarily ivory and silver, as we discuss the various contexts in which they were seen and used—both in wealthy households and/or at important ecclesiastic sites. In so doing, we will focus on several general themes, including the continued popularity of classical imagery among the well-educated, aristocratic classes; the theater and spectacle of dining; and the ultimate emergence of a new, "Byzantine" aesthetic. Finally, we will conclude by looking at the ancient practice of burying treasure hoards, and the impact of their discovery on modern archaeology and museum practices. C. Nielsen.

23000/33000. Nineteenth-Century Pasts. This course will interrogate the various senses of the past that emerge from European (particularly French) art of the nineteenth century, which has been called the great age of historical revivalism. No doubt the turbulence of contemporary events—replete with revolutions as well as rapid social and technological change—had something to do with the unprecedented ways in which nineteenth-century artists regarded and represented history, with a protean embrace of past styles. Themes and topics to be considered include Homer and the classical past; Joan of Arc and medieval revivalism; Napoleon; the Bourbon dynasty; troubadour painting; modern life and the uses of the past; and primitivism. The course will be grounded in the close study of objects from the Smart Museum's permanent collection and in a series of critical and theoretical readings. One visit to the Art Institute of Chicago can also be expected. The course will culminate in a small, collection-based exhibition to be presented at the Smart Museum. Some knowledge of French nineteenth-century art history preferred; reading knowledge of French desirable. A. Leonard.

23400/33400. Art, Architecture, and Identity in the Ottoman Empire. 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.

25011/35011. Africa, America. This seminar explores the dynamic exchanges in the expressive cultures of Africa and the Americas. It examines a range of visual and material traditions that emerged and grew from the sustained contact between the two continents from the era of the Atlantic Slave Trade to the present. Class discussion, readings, assignments, and museum visits address topics such as carnival performances, santer'a and candomblé traditions, Vodou ritual forms, Luso-African architecture on both continents, and contemporary art. C. Fromont.

Graduate Courses

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. Open to MAPH students concentrating in Art History. A. Lee.

40002. Collq: New Approaches to the History of Modern Cities. (=HIST 60002) he course reviews approaches to urban history and explores the recent interdisciplinary perspectives on the culture, architecture, social life, and politics of modern cities(circa 1700-1930). The course blends methodological and theoretical readings as well as particular empirical examples. It uses as case studies cities that are not often considered as belonging to the same history: Mexico City, Rio de Janeiro, Barcelona, and Chicago. Students will be encouraged to select a different city and advance and innovative and telling research proposal. T. Mauricio.

41803. The Materiality of Mesoamerican Art. This course will explore Mesoamerican works of art as objects, the cumulative results of decisions about medium, scale, materials, and facture. We will consider current theoretical perspectives on materiality as well indigenous material taxonomies and hierarchies of value. We will examine the impact of technological innovations and the changing meanings of materials over time, as well as the challenges of reconstructing ephemeral arts, such as textiles, featherwork, flowers, and even amaranth sculpture. C. Brittenham.

42111. Kongo in Theory. The evocative words "Kongo" or "Congo" have been used to describe a range of visual, material, and religious productions from Africa to the Americas — and back. Readings, discussions, and student research will analyze and challenge the historiography of seminal topics in which scholarship on the Congo/Kongo played a central role: magic, fetish, colonialism, popular culture, Afro-Christian religions, African aesthetics, cross-cultural conversion, art and context, diaspora, global art, cultural and historical continuities and change. C. Fromont.

46404. The Musee Imaginaire. Taking as its point of departure André Malraux’s notion of the “musée imaginaire,” this seminar will  consider the historical inter-relatedness of the uses to which various reproductive media have been put and developments in art museum practices.  Our focus will be on how reproductions been thought to shape ways of viewing and valuing original works, and how their impact has changed over time.  More specific topics include varying methods and senses of authentication, canon formation, exhibition design and education.   Readings and discussions will consider mainly European and American examples from 1860 to 1960, but student projects may extend beyond these parameters.  Each student will be required to produce a research paper and class presentation.  Reading knowledge of French highly desirable. M. Ward.

48709. Performance Art. Performance-based works not only define several crucial chapters in the history of twentieth and twenty-first century art, they also consistently present the would-be interpreter with complex challenges. In this course we will attempt to map differing theoretical approaches to the history of performance art, while also analyzing performance’s gradual transformation into a decisive object of art historical investigation. This seminar will concentrate on episodes in the history of performance art in Europe and North America. M. J. Jackson.

49307. Abstraction. This seminar centers on the close reading of seminal texts that thematize abstraction in artist's statements, manifestos, or works of history, theory, or criticism. It also asks what, if anything, unifies the meanings that accrue to abstraction as that term migrates from one historical period to another, and between practical disciplines. D. English.

Spring 2013

Undergraduate Courses

10100. Introduction to Art. Students must attend first class to confirm enrollment. For nonmajors, this course meets the general education requirement in the dramatic, musical, and visual arts. 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 importantly, 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.

14400. Italian Renaissance Art. This course offers an overview of the production and circulation of art in Italy during the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries. It introduces students to the most important centers and networks of art production and patronage and seeks to explore the social, political, and intellectual phenomena that informed the artworks we admire today as vestiges of the Italian Renaissance. Students will attain familiarity with a variety of media and techniques and understand the opportunities and challenges that those presented to artists. The course will develop skills in perception, comprehension, and appreciation when dealing with a variety of visual art forms. Students will train to understand art as a visual language and effectively translate this understanding into verbal expression, oral and written. J. Konova.

14505. The Global Middle Ages: Visual and Intercultural Encounters. Focusing on the art and architecture of the Mediterranean and Middle East, this course examines how the mobility of objects, people, and social practices remapped cultural boundaries. We will investigate cultures of contact through topics such as cultural cross-dressing, gift exchange, visual translation, and the reuse of objects. By combining case studies of artifacts with critical readings of comparative and theoretical work drawn from a variety of academic disciplines, we will also consider how work on modern cultures can inform interpretations of cultural production and experience before the modern "global age." H. Badamo.

15500. 19th Century European Art. This course provides a critical survey of the major developments in nineteenth-century European Art. We will look at stylistic transformations in art of the period within their broader cultural, historical, and political contexts. A strong emphasis will be put on close examination of works of art in different media (painting, sculpture, drawing, print), and thinking about them through various interpretive models. While doing so we will be addressing questions of modernism, artistic innovation and relation to tradition, genre definitions, and public versus private settings of display. Artists to be discussed include: Jacques-Louis David, Théodore Géricault, Eugène Delacroix, Caspar David Friedrich, J.M.W. Turner, Honoré Daumier, Gustave Courbet, August Rodin, Eduard Manet, Edgar Degas, Adolph Menzel, Odilon Redon, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Georges Seurat, Paul Gauguin, Vincent Van-Gogh, Paul Cézanne, and others. T. Mayer.

15600. 20th Century Art. This class provides a critical survey of the major movements, paradigms, and documents of European and American art of the 20th century. Special attention will be given to crucial problems: the relation of art and politics, art’s response to mass media and consumer culture, and the understanding of terms such as “modern,” “avant-garde,” and “postmodern.” More broadly, we will study fundamental tools for examining works of art formally, historically, and critically. The course is not intended as a complete survey of 20th century art; rather, it will address the complex set of aesthetic, philosophical, and political motivations that shaped the artistic production of select figures and movements, including Cubism, Dada, Surrealism, Pop Art, Minimalism, Performance Art, and Appropriation Art. L. Lee.

15605. 20th Century Photography. This survey course explores major developments in formal, technical, and critical approaches to photography over the twentieth century. Examining photography’s growing global presence in the realms of fine art and mass media, as well as in public and private life, we address the work of individual practitioners as well as key movements such as pictorialism, surrealism, documentary, street, and straight photography. Considering everything from photography’s role in transforming reportage to representing the remnants of a half-eaten sandwich, we will discuss the breadth of the medium’s influence on visual culture while also engaging critically with how the canon of photography developed. Writing assignments will require visits to local museums. L. Wilson.

15609. Visual Art in the Postwar U.S. A survey of major figures and developments in visual arts and related fields since roughly 1945. Chronological in progression, this course nevertheless affords a wide view of consequential developments in and beyond major art centers and occurring across mediums and national borders. Themes to be considered will include Abstract Expressionism, Color Field Painting, Happenings, Neo-Dada, Pop Art, Op Art, Minimal Art, Process, Performance, Situationism, Conceptual Art, experimental film and video, Earth Art, Neo-Geo, and others. D. English.

16709. Islamic Art and Architecture, 1100-1500. This course surveys the art and architecture of the Islamic world from 1100–1500. In that period, political fragmentation into multiple principalities challenged a deeply rooted ideology of unity of the Islamic world. The courts of the various principalities competed not only in politics, but also in the patronage of architectural projects and of arts such as textiles, ceramics, woodwork, and the arts of the book. While focusing on the central Islamic lands, we will consider regional traditions from Spain to India and the importance for the arts of contacts with China and the West. P. Berlekamp.

17110. Sinotopos. This course surveys 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 following a series of lectures. Areas for consideration may include: first emergence and subsequent developments of the genre in court and literati arenas; landscape aesthetics and theoretical foundations; major attributed works in relation to archaeological evidence. 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 based on assigned readings in secondary literature. P. Foong.

17121. The Art of Leonardo Da Vinci. The central focus of this course will be on the small, damaged and disputed body of paintings that Leonardo has left to us, the wealth of his drawings that help us make sense of that problematic heritage and provide the most direct route into his creative thinking, and the hundreds of pages of text in the form of notes in mirror-image handwriting that comment on art and so many other subjects. Our structure will be roughly chronological, including his late fifteenth-century Florentine artistic and social context (e.g., artists such as Verrocchio, Pollaiuolo, Ghirlandaio and Botticelli), his two long periods in Milan as a court artist, his triumphant return to Florence and rivalry with the young Michelangelo, his brief and unsatisfying stay in papal Rome, and the little known, mythic final years in France. Among the themes that will be critically examined are: Leonardo's role in the creation of what is still grandiosely called the High Renaissance; the value and problematic aspects of thinking of him as the quintessential artist-scientist; the significance of the fact that he has been a figure of such obsessive art-historical and broader cultural significance for over 500 years (e.g., readings by Vasari, Freud, and the innumerable artists who have interpreted and mimicked his work); and the ways in which recent scientific and digital imaging have shed surprising amounts of new light on his art. Through the concentrated art-historical material studied, the course will take seriously the attempt to introduce students with little or no background in art history to some of the major avenues for interpretation in this field, including formal, stylistic, iconographical, psychological, social, feminist, theoretical and reception. Readings are chosen with this diversity of approach in mind. C. Cohen.

17409. The 1930s as Culture Laboratory. The 1930s was a decade of wildly diverse artistic experiments in the United States, a veritable laboratory for modernizing American art and for redefining "culture" itself. This course introduces a wide range of those experiments, with readings drawn largely from primary sources. Topics include debates about realism vs. abstraction; American versions of surrealism; the work and impact of Mexican muralists in the U.S.; Midwestern regionalism and its controversial nativist sources; African-American artists in Chicago and New York; the impact of European émigré artists and scholars; the involvement of American artists in international anti-fascist movements; experiments in curatorial practice at the fledgling Museum of Modern Art, including the "Machine Art" exhibition; the emergence of "documentary" theories and practices in photography, film, and literature; the rise of photo-magazines LIFE & Look; the WPA Federal Arts Program; and the 1939 World's Fair. S. Miller.

17610. Modernism. This course will explore the development of European and American modernism by concentrating on examples in local collections, especially the Smart Museum and the Art Institute of Chicago. The modernist era, from roughly 1860 to 1960, brought dramatic changes in the conception and making of art. We will analyze these by attending to the media of painting, sculpture and printmaking. The class will meet frequently at the Art Institute, and students will need to be able to arrive at the museum in time for classes beginning there at 3:00. M. Ward.

17700. 19th Century Art in the Art Institute. In this course, we will closely examine 19th century paintings and sculptures in the Art Institute of Chicago and seek to understand how and why art changed during this period. Topics to be considered include the meaning of stylistic innovation in the 19th century, the development and dissolution of the genres as landscape and portraiture, and varying conceptions of realism and abstraction. Most class sessions will be devoted to looking at works in the galleries of the Art Institute. Because attendance is mandatory, students should consider whether their schedules will allow time for traveling to and from the museum for class meetings. Assignments include three papers and a variety of written homework exercises. M. Ward.

18000. Photography and Film. 18000 is a core course that serves as an introduction to the history of art by concentrating on some fundamental issues in the history of photography and film. The course is divided roughly in half between still photography and film. The central theme of the course concerns the way in which photographs and films have been understood and valued during the past 165 years. There have been profound changes in attitudes and beliefs regarding the nature of photographs throughout the history of photography (this is likewise true of film). The current range of views is very different from those held by the various audiences for photographs and films in the last century and the century before. For instance, photographs were originally conceived of as copies of things that can be seen, but the notion of copy was drawn from a long established set of views about what makes a picture a work of art and copies were said to be incapable of being works of art. This view continues to haunt the writings of some critics and historians of photography and film. The course will concentrate on the work of photographers, theorists of photography and film, and on films by John Huston, Billy Wilder, and Roman Polanski. J. Snyder.

22014. Art and Politics in 20th Cenutry Latin America. (=LACS 22014) Addressing a range of artistic styles and media from Mexico to the Southern Cone, this course presents a historical survey of interactions among politics, fine arts, and visual culture in 20th-century Latin America. Topics include: muralism and mass media during the Mexican Revolution; geometric abstraction and postwar developmentalist nationalism in Brazil, Argentina, and Venezuela; artistic pedagogy and Cold War revolutionary and reactionary movements in Cuba, Nicaragua, and Colombia; conceptual art under authoritarianism in Chile, Argentina, and Brazil; and contemporary responses to globalization, including transnational art practices. Students will gain understanding of stylistic developments in art across 20th-century Latin America, develop formal analysis skills, and practice using visual evidence in persuasive writing. The course will include firsthand experience with artworks during required visits to Chicago-area museums and galleries. A. Anagnost.

26414. Buildings as Evidence: Multidisciplinary Methods, Social and Spatial Meanings in the Built Environment. (=HIST 26414) What are buildings evidence of? And, how can we use buildings and landscapes to spatialize historical inquiry? This class is organized around the form, style, and context of buildings types and landscape elements—bungalows, shopping malls, libraries, courthouses, plazas, apartments, penthouses, settlement houses—to examine 20th century U.S. built environment history, and provide students with a toolkit to conduct their own architectural and spatial analysis. We examine building types as social, political, and cultural processes that both define and delimit daily life and the constitution of community, exploring topics such as domesticity, urban inequality, modernity, and capitalism and representation, materiality, and form. Rather than a long term paper, students will conduct short assignments throughout the quarter that engage buildings and landscape elements as primary evidence. Our toolkit will include diagrams, architectural plans, town plats, aerial photographs, Sanborn maps, cognitive maps, material analysis, city directories and ethnographic methods. S. Lopez.

28001. Drawing in France in the Eighteenth Century. Drawing has long been regarded as a preparatory work subject to the final artwork. In the Eighteenth Century, drawing achieves an intellectual status, as a representation of the idea of the artist. Primary expression of the creative process, the drawing is now seen by amateurs as a tool to understand the genesis of the work and as such becomes an object of delight. Through the study of different techniques and the development of a specific vocabulary in contemporary sources, this course aims in particular to study drawing as a means of building the [hi]story at a time when the narrative as a representation of action is questioned. S. Caviglia- Brunel.

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, students who are majoring in art history may use this course to satisfy requirements for the major, a special field, or electives. This course is also open to non-majors with advanced standing. This course is primarily intended for students who are majoring in art history and who can best meet program requirements by study under a faculty member's individual supervision. The subject, course of study, and requirements are arranged with the instructor.

Undergraduate and Graduate Courses

20202/30202. Central European Avant-Gardes and the Discourse of Modernization. The course would give an overview of avant-garde art movements in Central Europe in 1910-1930, against a wider background of modern art developments and exchange of ideas across West Europe and Russia. The general frames of the topic bring about a series of issues which are open for discussion, starting with the meaning of “Central Europe”, the import of artistic geographies and centers, and ultimately the historical conditions in which modern art history was shaped in the West. The position of “marginality”, which was the disadvantageous fate of Central European Avant-Gardes, is also an opportunity to shed some new light on the crucial avant-garde issues like originality, universalism, and utopian engagement. In what way Czech cubism or Polish expressionism may be said to be “avant-garde”, or they are “derivative” in comparison with their Parisian or German counterparts? On what basis such comparisons may be valid, and is it right to regard local variations of modern movements independently, on their own terms? What was the import of local artistic traditions, and how they related with the universalistic visions of “modern” world?  After I world war, the political borders in the central part of Europe were newly established and new countries (Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia) emerged on the map, while others (like Lithuania and Poland) regained independence after the long time of political inexistence. This gave the ground for modernizing experiments in which a rich network of Avant-Garde artistic groups and institutions appeared. Their art may be viewed as a part of international Avant-Garde, however, it gives also another look on the process of modernization, in which modern dreams and myths were often combined with the ironic understanding of one’s condition of “provinciality” and “underdevelopment”. A. Rejniak Majewska.

20603/30603. Image and Text in Mexican Codices. In most Mesoamerican languages, a single word describes the activities that we would call “writing” and “painting.” This seminar will investigate the interrelationships between image and text in Central Mexico both before and immediately after the introduction of alphabetic writing in the 16th century. We will also review art historical and archaeological evidence for the social conditions of textual and artistic production in Mexico, and how these traditions were transformed under Spanish colonial rule. We will consider the materiality of text and image by working with facsimiles of Mesoamerican books in the Special Collections of the Regenstein Library. At the end of the course, students will have acquired a basic literacy in Aztec and Mixtec writing systems, and will have refined their ability to look productively and write elegantly about art. Both undergraduate and graduate students will write 10-15 page research papers for this course. C. Brittenham.

22402/32402. "Writing" Modern Life: Lit and the Etching Revival, 1850-1940. This course begins from the parallels between writing and etching (as varieties of both hand-writing and authorship) noted by contemporaries as disparate as Charles Baudelaire and Samuel Palmer (a visionary disciple of William Blake). The course will explore different approaches to writing modernity in the two media, from Poe-Dickens-Baudelaire-Meryon (and other French artists)-Whistler in the middle of the nineteenth century through Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, and British and American urban etchers of World War I and the 1920s and early 30s, comparing visual and verbal representations in several genres (poetry, fiction, and journalism as well as artists' etchings and etched illustration) with particular attention to representations of urbanization and its impact on more traditional forms of narrative, lyric, and landscape. Attention will be paid to the uneven development of non-narrative and increasingly abstract languages and modes of notation. We will also study the rhetorics of value (economic and aesthetic) surrounding the etching and the book. In addition to readings (literary and critical) and close study of prints in the Smart Museum or the Art Institute collections, the course may include a demonstration/workshop with printmakers. Response papers, final paper. E. Helsinger.

23900/33900. Text and Image in Renaissance France. This course studies manuscripts, printed books, and printed images produced in fifteenth- and sixteenth-century France that combine text and image, particularly those that do so in unusual, innovative, or provocative ways. We will consider problems of interpretation, "illustration," friction and gaps between text and image, and the uses of print vs. manuscript. Types of objects studied include emblem books, books of hours, scientific books, mythological and romance literature, captioned prints and print albums, and ceremonial books made to document events. We will visit several local collections. (n.b. Because of this, several class meetings will run past 4:30.) Basic reading knowledge of French required. Requirements: class participation, brief presentation(s), a short paper and a 10-pp writing assignment (either a research paper or a research proposal with annotated bibliography). For credit in Romance Languages, written work is to be done in French. R. Zorach.

Graduate Courses

42000. Giorgione and Giorgionism. This course will concentrate on the central, very problematic figure of Giorgione, but it will also pay attention to contemporaries such as the old Giovanni Bellini and the young Titian in an attempt to contextualize his role in the origins of a distinctive Venetian version of the Renaissance. Since the definition of Giorgione's oeuvre is one of the most important unresolved issues in defining the Renaissance corpus, his disputed oeuvre will be used as the basis for a critical examination of the practice, history and theory of connoisseurship with special attention to recent technical (including digital) approaches. A second major theme of the course is Giorgione's new attitudes towards subject matter and innovations in pictorial types (e.g., pastoral landscape, meaning in portraiture), which seem to have led to some of the most discussed iconographical puzzles in Western art (e.g., Tempest, Three Philosophers, Fête Champêtre). Students will have the option of doing seminar reports that focus on any of a wide range of art-historical 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, including later manifestations of Giorgionism in European art. C. Cohen.

42009. Art, Science and Magic in the Pre-Modern Islamic World. This seminar examines relationships between arts and the study of the cosmos in the pre-modern Islamic world. Our objects of study mediated human understanding of the cosmos, and/or offered humans the possibility of manipulating their position within it. The media in which these objects were made include manuscripts, textiles, ceramics, metalwork, and architecture. Recurrent questions of the seminar include the following. How closely can we define historically appropriate theoretical frameworks (eg., Neoplatonic, Hermetic, Aristotelean, Prophetic Medicinal) for particular objects? How do we explain objects of similar forms which might be theorized through divergent models, or objects of divergent forms which might be theorized through similar models? Each student will write a research paper on a topic to be developed in consultation with the instructor. P. Berlekamp.

42610. Imperial Collections of Chinese Painting and Calligraphy. This course looks at imperial art collections of painting and calligraphy and the institutions that administered them. We will survey approaches in secondary scholarship on collections amassed for the court by members of the court: emperors, empresses, clansmen, eunuchs, scholars. Readings will focus on the great collections of Emperors Tang Taizong, Li Houzhu, Song Huizong, and Yuan Wenzong (Tugh Temür), but research topics can be chosen from later dynastic periods. Weekly reports, discussion, and final projects may investigate extant works by addressing issues such as: art catalogs as courtly enterprise; the relationship between art and library collections; emperor as private collector/public patron; expatriated collections and imperial identity under foreign rulers, and so on. Chinese required. Japanese (reading) highly recommended. P. Foong.

42700. Late Antique Art. This course, inspired by and focusing on the materials in the Late Antique show at the Art Institute, will be an introduction to Late Antique art.   It will explore the significance of the changes in visual production in the genesis of the general theoretical bibliography of art history; the particular characteristics of late antique art and the range of its kinds of artefacts; its specific and conflictive historiography. We shall veer between an empirical inductive approach, looking at lots of stuff in the museum and a more general account of theoretical overviews that have been offered for Late Roman art – overviews that have been influential in the broader historiography of art history as a discipline. The course will be taught over the first 5 weeks of the Spring Quarter on an intensive (let us hope not an excessively intensive) schedule. J. Elsner.

42911. 21st Century Art. This course will consider the practice and theory of visual art in the late twentieth and twenty-first centuries. M. Jackson.

43002. The Face on Film. (=CMST 63002) The seminar will discuss on the workings of the face –as imprint of identity, as figure of subjectivity, as privileged object of representation, as mode and ethic of address – through film theory and practice. How has cinema responded to the mythic and iconic charge of the face, to the portrait’s exploration of model and likeness, identity and identification, the revelatory and masking play of expression, the symbolic and social registers informing the human countenance. At this intersection of archaic desires and contemporary anxieties, the face will serve as our medium by which to reconsider, in the cinematic arena, some of the oldest questions on the image. Among the filmmakers and writers who will inform our discussion are Balázs, Epstein, Kuleshov, Dreyer, Pasolini, Hitchcock, Warhol, Bresson, Bazin, Barthes, Doane, Aumont, Nancy, Didi-Huberman, and others. N. Steimatsky.

43340. Pindar: Ritual, Poetics, Monuments. (=CDIN 44912,CMLT 42801,CLAS 44912) This course will be taught by Boris Maslov (Comp. Lit.) and Richard Neer (Art History) with the continuous participation of Leslie Kurke (Classics and Comp. Lit., University of California at Berkeley).  It will explore new ways of reading Greek poetry, and new disciplinary formations at the intersection of archaeology, art history, classics and comparative literature.  Coursework will consist of close readings of Pindar with an eye to material and institutional contexts of poetic production.  Topics will include the “thingly” or material nature of the poem; architectural metaphors; the emergent discourse of poetic professionalism; relation between epinician and traditional cult poetry; sites of poetic performance; Pindar’s allusions to monuments at Delphi, Olympia and elsewhere; the historical phenomenology of architecture and statuary; and the construction of sacred landscapes. Students wishing to develop a closer familiarity with Pindar and Pindaric scholarship will meet, as part of an informal reading group, run by Boris Maslov, in the Winter quarter (starting in Week 4); those wishing to take part should send an email tomaslov@uchicago.edu. Prerequisites: Classical Greek required; graduate standing (seniors may be admitted; should email Prof. Maslov or Prof. Neer in advance). R. Neer and B. Maslov.

43701. Neo-Avant-Wave: Post-War Film Experiment in France. The New Wave. The Neo-Avant Garde. These film and art movements have rarely been placed into an explicit historical or theoretical dialog or dialectic. It will be the task of this seminar to do just that. We will begin our study with a brief look into the pre-WWII situation of radical art and film movements, and classic theories of the avant-garde and neo-avant-garde. Turning our attention to the rise of Lettrism within the context of post-war film and art culture, we will subsequently evaluate the conditions that surrounded the emergence of New Wave filmmaking and criticism, and that include the Situationist International and Nouveau Réalisme. As we move toward and beyond the events of May 1968, we will bring our study of social documentary, politically militant forms, collective film and art practices, and historiography to bear on purportedly stable understandings of the New Wave, its art historical forbearers, and its heirs. Reading knowledge of French is required. While some of our texts will appear in English translation, many will not. The seminar will be conducted in English, but the last thirty minutes of each session will be conducted in French. This component is intended to improve students’ oral proficiency, but it will not be used in student evaluation. Screenings are mandatory. With some possible exceptions, films will be subtitled. Students enrolled in FREN 43713 will be required to complete all reading and writing in French. J. Wild.

49900. Historiography of Art History. This course, designed specifically for art history graduate students, explores the foundations of the art historical discipline as it emerged from the German intellectual context in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. It then focuses on those approaches that have proved most formative for the development of the discipline in Anglo-American contexts after the Second World War. Rather than attempting to cover a comprehensive history of the historiographic tradition, the readings will attempt to present a coherent, if highly complex and conflictive, narrative that remains open to continued interrogation by its practitioners. J. Elsner. 

50200. Dissertation Proposal Workshop. The Dissertation Proposal Workshop is conducted by a faculty member every spring to introduce third-year students to the tasks of preparing grant proposals and applications. Grant proposals are typically much shorter than the departmental proposal. Here you will read and critique each other's proposals. The aim of the workshop is to help you produce a finished proposal by the early fall of your fourth year and to prepare you to apply for grants at that time. Second year students who have room in their schedule and have a dissertation topic defined may enroll in their second year, with permission of their advisor and Director of Graduate Studies. You should register for the workshop for course credit. Grading is Pass/Fail. The time demands of the workshop will depend on how far along you are in developing your departmental proposal. If you are early in that process, working on a short grant proposal will help you define what you need to develop in both versions over the summer. K. Taylor.