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Undergraduate Program

Art History Courses

Below you will find a list of all undergraduate courses that have been offered.

NOTE: Not all of these courses are offered in any given year.

AH 100 INTRODUCTION TO VISUAL & CULTURAL STUDIES

The aim of this course is two-fold: First, to develop an understanding of the extraordinary variety of ways meaning is produced in visual culture; secondly, to enable students to analyze and describe the social, political and cultural effects of these meanings. By studying examples drawn from contemporary art, film, television, digital culture, and advertising we will learn techniques of analysis developed in response to specific media and also how to cross-pollinate techniques of analysis in order to gain greater understanding of the complexity of our visual world. Grades are based on response papers, class attendance and participation, and a midterm and a final paper. Occasional film screenings will be scheduled as necessary in the course of the semester.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 101 INTRO TO ART & VISUAL CULTURE

This course is designed to introduce the student to aspects of the history of Western painting, sculpture, & architecture from the Renaissance through the present. We will examine the various schools & movements in their historical contexts, while paying particular attention to the histories that bear upon them, such as the influence of the classical past, religion, gender, political power, & the rise of the artist. The course will therefore attempt two goals; one, to familiarize students with the principal monuments of the western tradition from about 1400 onward, that is, the paintings, sculptures, buildings, & artifacts which form the substance of this narrative; two, to develop visual literacy, that is, the ability not only to identify but also to discuss art works in a way that develops critical competence & an understanding of how the western tradition of art has come about.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 102 INTRO TO MEDIA STUDIES

This course introduces students to the theory and practice of media studies. We will look at a range of both media and historical tendencies related to the media, including manuscript culture, print, and the rise of the newspaper, novel, and modern nation-state; photography, film, television and their respective differences as visual mediums; important shifts in attitudes towards painting; the place of sound in the media of modernity; and the computerization of culture brought about by the computer, social networks, video games, and cell phones. In looking at these, we will consider both the approaches that key scholars in the field of media studies use, and the concepts that are central to the field itself (media/medium; medium-specificity; remediation; the culture industry; reification and utopia; cultural politics). By the end of the class, students will have developed a toolkit for understanding, analyzing, and judging the media that shape their lives in late modernity.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 103 WAYS OF SEEING: Avant-garde Bodies

Ways of Seeing is an introductory course in Visual Studies and Art History. We look at images and objects and learn “ways of seeing”: in other words, how these artifacts visually relate to history, to their producers, and to the people who look at and live with them. Considering issues like gender, class, sexual identity and race and ethnicity, we develop visual skills by looking at a wide range of images, reading histories and analyses, and holding wide-ranging class discussions. This course, which changes “topic” very frequently, is an excellent introduction to art history.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 104 SCREENING BLACKNESS: VISUAL CULTURE & THE BLACK BODY

Come explore the history and aesthetic of film’s technology, from the pre-cinematic days to the advent of digital. What were cinematographers able to do before digital technologies? Did it look good? From George Méliès to Star Wars, what happened to film? This course will offer you an in depth overview of film techniques, placed in their technological, historical and geographical context. Our aim will not only be to understand what film producers were able to do, but what possibilities trick photography and special effects opened for cinema, from the early days and on. This journey through cinema will be an attempt to define special effects: can we consider, for example, that sound, color or even continuous narration are special effects? Would that make cinema an art of artifice or mimesis? The majority of this class will be devoted to analog technologies and we will look at digital technologies through the medium of analog photography.

Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 106 INTRODUCTION TO ARCHAEOLOGY

This course introduces the student to the field of archaeology through three units of study: 1) The history of excavation from ancient to modern times, 2) The techniques of excavation and the analysis of material remains, 3) Modern theories of cultural interpretation of archaeological sites. We will discuss the value of archaeological approaches to the fields of anthropology, history, architectural and art history, religious and classical studies. Much of the instruction will be illustrated by case studies of sites; although the view will be global, there will be a concentration in Old World material from prehistory to the early modern period. Students will be required to write three essays, with subjects selected from each of the three course units.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 107 ANCIENT ARCHITECTURE

This offering introduces architecture of the ancient world with a focus on Egypt, Mesopotamia, the Bronze Age Aegean, Greece and Rome. Of particular interest is the creation and development of urbanism in which spaces and buildings are expressions of political, social, economic and religious aspects of the cultures. Due consideration will be made of the environment as a source not only of materials (and their construction techniques), but also relating to the meaning of buildings and the world view of the cultures.

Last Offered: Spring 2011

AH 108 ENGIN & ARCHITECT HERITAGE

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 110 THE CITY: CONTESTED SPACES

What does it mean to live in a city? Can you reshape people’s lives by redesigning city spaces? How do city dwellers, architects, politicians, and others interact with and appropriate their own urban past? This interdisciplinary course will introduce students to different ways of looking at cities, framing them as the contested products of a range of human actions. Through an in-depth examination of four complex urban environments – Chicago, Istanbul, Delhi, and Rome – we will learn about the interplay between space, aesthetics, time, memory, and power. Weekly lectures by an anthropologist, an architect, and a historian will complement discussions of film, historical documents, fiction, and relevant case studies. In addition to writing four short papers, students will hone their analytical skills by observing urban life and form with a series of field studies in the city of Rochester.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 111 WOMEN IN THE VISUAL ARTS

Women have often been overlooked in the story of Western Art. Many of their works are lost or unknown, making them difficult to study. In recent years, scholars have worked to restore this lost chapter of western art history. In this class we will explore the representation of women in the history of visual art and the work of women artists from the Renaissance to the present. We will seek to understand how the achievements of women artists fit into the time and place in which they worked, and we will examine some of the ethical, social, and political issues that both contributed to and arise from the suppression of women within art history. We will consider such questions as what led to this omission, does it persist today, and, if so, why?

Last Offered: Spring 2012

AH 112 FEMINIST BODY IN PERFORMANCE

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 114 CREATING ARCHITECTURE - an Introduction

Buildings are among the most public, visible & long lived artifacts that a culture creates. The built environment serves as both a repository of cultural information & exerts an influence that extends beyond the society that created it. This introductory course will explore a visual survey of Architecture from Ancient Times to the present day using a slide lecture & discussion format that will invite each student to participate in the discourse of the class. The studio portion of this course will provide students an opportunity to create their own structures from sketch to 3 dimensional pieces exploring basic design elements & materials. No prior studio experience is necessary. Students will be expected to purchase basic tools used in this course. A materials supply list will be provided at the first class. Students are expected to pay the $50 studio fee to cover the use of shared supplies & equipment. Not open to seniors. To be added to the wait list, please contact stephanie.ashenfelder@rochester.edu.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 118 INTRO TO CONTEMPORARY ART

From video to performance art, participatory public art to painting, contemporary art asks new questions about the world in which we live. We now look for contemporary art in every corner of the globe, and expect it to tell us about everything from the degradation of the environment to the nature of love: art is expected to be political, popular, engaging, and intimate. This course surveys the developments that made it possible for art to claim such powerful stakes, and takes a look at what is going on in museums, galleries, and cities around the world. There is no prerequisite for this course.

Last Offered: Fall 2012

AH 120 FEMINISM & VISUAL CULTURE

This course will serve as a hands-on introduction to the study of digital media. Through a mix of critical and theoretical readings we will historicize the concepts of both “new” and “media” and look at their applications in the Humaniites and Social Sciences. Paying particular attention to ideas of practice and networking—through a combination of individual and collaborative projects-- we will explore the meaning of authorship in the digital age. This class will have a required lab that will meet in Rettner Hall at a time to be determined.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 124 NEW GODS: SUPER HEROES & DIGITAL CINEMA

This is an introductory course that explores the relationship between the music industry and different documentary practices. We will study the sociopolitical importance of music culture by means of the aesthetics of documentary. By looking at a variety of musical genres such as punk, rock, reggae, electronic music, pop, tango, experimental music, jazz, flamenco, and hip-hop, we will focus on specific questions around gender, class, sexuality and political resistance. We will look at musicians such as Nirvana, Fugazi, Katheleen Hanna, Nina Simone, The Rolling Stones, Eminem, Snoop Dogg or Pussy Riot. As well as filmmakers such as Jem Cohen, Les Blank, Maysles brothers, Carlos Saura, Sini Anderson, Penelope Spheeris, Shirley Clark and, the Otolith Group.

Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 125 The Mediterranean Emporia: The Art and Archaeology of Phoenician Culture(s) in the First Millennium B.C.E.

The Phoenician world spanned the entire Mediterranean in the first millennium B.C.E., reaching the conceptual edge of the world beyond the Pillars of Hercules, clashing with Greek, Roman and indigenous Mediterranean cultures. This course will approach the visual arts and archaeological presence of Phoenician and subsequent Carthaginian cultures in the first millennium B.C.E. The course will also take into consideration Phoenician and Carthaginian trading practices and their influence on indigenous lifeways from the Levant to Western North Africa. The topics discussed over the course of the semester will serve to showcase the sometimes overlooked, yet dramatic influence of Phoenician culture on the trajectory of the ancient Mediterranean world.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 128 MODERN ART

This course introduces students to art made from the late 19th century to the present. We examine the various movements in their historical contexts, from Impressionism and post-Impressionism through Cubism, Abstraction Expressionism, Pop and Minimalism, as well as contemporary developments like installation and performance art. We consider how issues of gender, technological developments, and wars and social movements have affected art. The course is taught through a combination of lecture and discussion, and we will be constantly looking at images to understand how ideas, social change, and history are refracted in works of modern art.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 130 HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY

This survey course will provide an overview of photography from pre-photographic times to the present. Given that there is no single history, but only histories of the medium, the course will explore a variety of approaches to the study of photography, its evolution in relation to other art forms and its role in the development of mass culture. Students taking this course will gain a basic knowledge of photographic history, its major events, practitioners and theorists. We will consider the photographic image in a range of contexts, including art, advertising, journalism and propaganda, and will explore the social, political and ethical consequences of photographic media in our culture. This course will make extensive use of the collections of the International Museum of Film and Photography at the George Eastman House.

Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 133 CRITICALLY QUEER

No description

Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 136 INTRODUCTION TO THE ART OF FILM

The primary visual, aural, and narrative structures and conventions by which motion pictures create and comment upon significant human experience.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 137 INTRODUCTION TO MODERN ARCHITECTURE

This course provides an introduction to modern architecture starting with its nineteenth-century roots and continuing to the present day. We will explore the impact of technological, economic, political, and social change on architecture, as well as study major figures of modern architecture such as Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, and Frank Lloyd Wright.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 138 BEYOND BANSKY, GRAFF/STR ART

This course introduces students to critical approaches to the cultural practice of street art and graffiti, considering the very surface of the city as a site for negotiating meaning and belonging. Building an interdisciplinary framework grounded in urban anthropology, sociology, art history, and cultural theory, we will examine and problematize popular understandings, canonical figures, and historical trajectories of graffiti and street art. Visual objects such as photographic archives, magazines, documentaries, and digital projects will form an integral part of the course. For their final projects students will be asked to engage with their very own local context and devise a self-directed research project to be conducted in Rochester. Topics may include the abandoned Rochester subway, the WALL\THERAPY mural festival or the role of graffiti and street art in the process of urban renewal.

Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 142 ARTS OF EAST ASIA (I): ca. 10,000 BCE – 1000 CE

This course introduces the arts of China, Japan, and Korea from the Neolithic times to around the end of the first millennium CE. It provides a general understanding of prehistoric and historical cultures and civilizations of East Asia through a selection of objects, monuments, and artworks. It aims to narrate histories and map geographies by considering the roles of the arts. We will look at both regional resources and the mobility of materials and artifacts in transregional contexts. We will discuss them in terms of ritual uses, socioeconomic forces, intellectual impetuses, as well as processes of historical changes, religious transmissions, and cultural encounters.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 150 INTRO TO ARCHITECTURE

The lectures and readings of this course introduce many approaches to the study of architecture. We will explore the meaning of building in its cultural and environmental context and will consider the specifics of aesthetics, materials, and structure, using a selection of works from prehistoric to modern times. Emphasis will be placed on experiencing architecture through real, reconstructed and imaginary buildings.

Last Offered: Fall 2012

AH 167 AESTHTCS IN TRAD CHINESE ART

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AH 168 CONTEMPORARY JAPANESE ART

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AH 169 MATERIAL LIFE OF RELIGION

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Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 172 CONCEPTS/INTRO 2D:BAUHAUS

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Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 187 THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF HOME

Why is there no place like home? What makes home such a special place? Why did the human home evolve? Homes evoke powerful emotions about place and also highlight the dynamic and complex nature of people, their relationships to each other, and the broader society they live in. Archaeologists, therefore, must study the material culture found in and around domestic dwellings in order to identify any reoccurring patterns of those materials to reconstruct their household practices and social relations. This course will focus on the ways that material traces from the past shed light on the diversity of domestic life, which includes household organization; economic strategies; diet and status of families; rituals, and identity. To this end, we will read case studies from household archaeology about all types of homes (mobile shelters to sedentary palaces), but also review key anthropological texts about place-making.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 188 CITIES & URBANISM IN PRE-COLUMBIAN MESOAMERICA AND THE ANDES

The discipline of archaeology can make unique contributions to our understanding of urbanism and daily life given its ability to examine long-term processes of development and change. The goal of this course is to provide an introduction and overview of urbanism as exemplified by the indigenous cities of the New World (e.g. Mesoamerica and South America). While regional differences will be discussed, we will focus mainly on identifying the theoretical issues that intersect all of the regions we will be studying.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 199 THE ANCIENT CITY

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 201 ARTS AND ACTIVISM

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 202 CHINESE FILM

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 203 DIGITAL CITYSCAPES

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 205 TRAUMA, MEMORY, REALISM: FROM EUROPE TO SOUTH KOREA

This course is an innovative attempt to read world cinemas in a comparative lens. We will follow major thematic threads in cinema studies such as trauma, memory, and realism. From the 1930s through 1960s, films in Europe and Hollywood strived to depict effectively traumatic social upheavals and wars, giving rise to new generic conventions and cinematic movements. We will expand our discussion on cinematic developments in the west to the context of contemporary South Korea, where the country has undergone colonialism and neo-colonialism, political corruption and uprisings for democracy. By way of comparing the cultural and aesthetic aspects of European and Korean cinemas, this course seeks to understand how each national cinema depicts cultural wounds and social healings.

Last Offered: Summer 2010

AH 206 FIELD METHODS IN ARCHAEOLOGY

Independent film occupies a central place in our cultural consciousness. Its success speaks to the value America places on the 'outsider.' From the pop-violence of Quentin Tarantino, to the introspective cinema of Mark Rappaport, what does it mean to be ‘independent'? After all, films we consider to be 'independent' often have more connections to Hollywood than we tend to think. But how do we begin to approach this term? For instance, is it a question of funding? Does it indicate certain conditions of authorship or production? Can we think of 'independent cinema' as a genre unto itself? We will consider such questions by examining a number of important works from the past 20 years by filmmakers such as Kelly Reichardt, Todd Haynes, Andrew Bujalski, Harmony Korine, Tom DiCillo, Gregg Araki, Jem Cohen, Larry Clarke, Sadie Benning, Azazel Jacobs, Cheryl Dunye, Spike Lee, Jenni Olson, Todd Solondz, Sofia Coppola, Richard Linklater, Jon Jost, Su Friedrich, Jim Jarmusch, Caveh Zahedi, and the Coen Brothers.

Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 207 FILM HISTORY: 1989-PRESENT

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 208 EARLY MODERN CHINESE PNTG

This seminar considers painting as both a socio-cultural practice and a historical agent in early modern China, ca. 1400–1800. Starting from the fifteenth century, Chinese painting underwent significant change in terms of representational mode as well as art-historical consciousness. Modern understandings of Chinese painting have been influenced by artistic criticism written by literati at that time, which perpetuate painting’s anachronistic status as a seemingly idealizing cultural vehicle, categorizing this period as the “post-history” of Chinese painting history. Our goal will be to understand the historical nuances of painting of this period. We will explore how painting, as both an artistic practice and an aesthetic mode, entangled in constructing people’s everyday lives including interior display, garden construction, outdoor spaces, religious sites, and commercial and urban surroundings. We will also examine the intellectual impetus in the innovation of painting’s composition, space, and representation

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 209 WRITING ON ART

This course seeks to improve students' writing and analytical skills through analysis and experimentation with different styles of writing about contemporary and historical arts. Students analyze prose by artists, historians, cultural critics, poets, and others who have written on the visual arts, with an eye towards how writing on art can be a tool for improving expression in many areas. Slide lectures, discussions, and writing projects on objects of diverse media and historical eras will be augmented by visiting speakers and field trips to museums and galleries. This course fulfills one-half of the upper level writing requirement for both studio and art history majors. Permission of instructor required.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 210 OBJECT LESSONS: ENCOUNTERING THE WORK OF ART

This class will examine 8 works of art from different eras and geographical locations in order to understand the multi-vocal ways that visual objects communicate ideas about culture, religion, philosophy, aesthetics, politics, and a host of other issues. We will focus on how to analyze different kinds of objects--a building, a piece of furniture, a painting, a contemporary installation, among them--in order to see how artists, art historians and critics "read" a work of art in different ways. Some field trips to museums and cultural sites will be part of the class, as will intensive reading and writing about art.

Last Offered: Spring 2015

AH 211 FRENCH CINEMA: THE NEW WAVE

This course provides a detailed examination of the French filmmakers of the New Wave, from 1959 to 1967. We will examine the work of Jean-Pierre Melville, Claude Chabrol, Francois Truffaut, Jean-Luc Godard, Eric Rohmer, Agnes Varda, and Jacques Rivette. We will also explore the films' historical context and influence through some attention to their predecessors and successors. Knowledge of French helpful, but not necessary.

Last Offered: Spring 2013

AH 212 WHAT PHOTO IS

What does color do to ideas of photography that were born in the black-and-white era? How does digital manipulation further alter our understanding of the medium? Does the invention of cinema change ‘what photo is’? Do social institutions––from charity and social justice to profiling and social networking, all of which owe some of their cultural importance to photography—change what photography is? This course uses readings, lectures, discussions,and visits to the Eastman House and with working photographers to promote deeper understandings of what photography has been and can be, and to enable students to “read” photographs more complexly and historically.

Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 213 RACE & GENDER IN POP FILM

This course explores Hollywood's current fascination with race and gender as social issues and spectacles. In particular, we will focus on the ways that social difference have become the sites of increasingly conflicted narrative and visual interactions in our films. To examine competing representations of racial difference and sexual difference in contemporary US culture, we analyze popular films of the 1980s and 1990s, from thrillers to action films to comedies.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 214 BEYOND THE BOUNDARIES: FOLK AND OUTSIDER ART

Road-side signs, weathervanes, quilts, nut crackers in the shape of a woman's body--what do vernacular and popular objects from the 19th century to the present tell us about American culture? These problematized classes of objects are sometimes called craft, folk art, outsider art, or vernacular art. We will chart the history of thought about theses rubrics, from late 19th century European writings on craft and ornament to early 20th century American writings on folk art, to the contemporary fascination with "outsider" art. In some semesters, this course may focus on specialized topics, such as "folk erotica" or vernacular environments. May be taken more than once for credit with permission of instructor.

Last Offered: Fall 2011

AH 215 SEMINAR IN CONTEMPORARY ART

The Seminar in Contemporary Art is a course designed to bring together studio art and art history majors and minors in an extended discussion of contemporary artistic practices. We often look backwards to the 1960s or earlier but usually focus on a method, issue, or aspect to contemporary art (e.g. participation; photography; authorship). This course prepares students for critical engagement with contemporary art practices and can serve as an excellent preparation for Art New York or for a career in the arts.

Prerequisites: At least one previous art history course required.
Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 216 ORIENTALISM ART & ARCH

This seminar addresses the construction of knowledge through politics and how this process has colored ideological dispositions and means of representation––specifically literary, artistic and architectural––across time. Orientalism is the seminar’s specific example but also posits parallels and intersections with other discursive settings where cultural representations have been historically constructed by one cultural group of another. This course is organized as a series of encounters between “Western” culture and the “Orient’s” Islamic, South Asian and East Asian cultures in both historical periods¬––covering antiquity to the present day––and representational contexts, covering literature, art and architecture.

Last Offered: Spring 2015

AH 217 FRAMEWORKS:SPACE & PLACE IN THE WORK OF ART

In the late 1960s and early 1970s the notion of site specificity emerged in art, posing a challenge to the “pure” and “objective” exhibition space of the museum, as well as the overall commercialization of the art object. Art moved out of the museum and into the world, embracing immateriality, duration, and—above all—the question of location. In this course we will consider the historical, cultural, discursive, institutional, and physical frameworks that allow us to draw meaning from art, juxtaposing modern and contemporary examples with classical, Renaissance, and other pre-modern traditions. We will explore the connection between art’s physical and conceptual frameworks, navigating the changeable worlds that exist within and beyond the frame.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 218 PHOTOGRAPHY IN EAST ASIA

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 219 TOMB, TEMPLE, AND PALACE

This seminar introduces art and ritual in China throughout history. It examines a variety of artefacts and spaces including burials, religious and palatial architectures, murals, sculptures, and paintings. It also looks at the practice of archaeology and the preservation of cultural heritage alongside their politics in modern times. We will discuss issues related to the visual and material culture of rituals as revealed in mortuary art, religious art, royal art, and folkloric art. Besides considering how ritual art was practiced to shape society and state as well as people’s experiences of them, we will deal with methods of historiography associated with those artefacts and practices. While no prerequisite, students are expected to take the challenge to learn a body of cultural-historical materials and knowledge and to think critically of them.

Last Offered: Spring 2011

AH 220 PARIS:CAPITAL OF THE 19TH C

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AH 221 CLA ARCH: ROMAN ART AND ARCH

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Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 222 TRADITIONAL JPN CULTURE

What is a copy? The question may seem trivial and the answer obvious, yet just what do we mean when we say a work is a copy? Is a copy the same thing as a reproduction, replication, repetition, imitation, duplicate, or facsimile? And what of related terms such as fake, forgery or counterfeit? Throughout history artists have addressed the work of others, and sometimes their own work, from the point of view of imitating it, appropriating it, and refashioning it. As a practice copying in its many forms has underpinned the production of art since earliest times. As a theory imitation precedes notions of authenticity and originality, and may be said to bring these latter concepts into being. This course will examine copying across the full range visual media – painting, sculpture, architecture, printmaking photography, film and new media.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 224 RUSSIAN ART

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Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 225 CLSCL ARCHAEO:GREEK ART&ARCH

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Last Offered: Spring 2016

AH 226 (AREZZO) IT MONUMENTS

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 227 POETICS OF TELEVISION

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Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 228 ARCHAEOLOGY AFRICAN DIASPORA

This course asks what happens if you think about art as a commodity rather than in terms of creators, aesthetics, or iconography. Rather than looking at art as self-expression or the work of individual artists, this course looks at art as a commodity and in relation to economic forces. What determines the value of a work of art or an art object and why does value change over time? We will look at case studies providing a historical perspective and at the present-day explosive art market. We will investigate historical evidence on ways in which art was exchanged and evaluated, and how the profession of art dealing evolved. We will look at how dealers became involved in creating brands for artists and ways in which the contemporary art fair has blurred the line between curator and dealer. We will consider how artists work with and against the market and how art and museums figure in economic development. The class will require short writing assignments, a presentation and a research paper.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 229 ART IN AGE OF ENLIGHTENMENT

The principal objective of the course is to undertake a reevaluation of the received ideas associated with the eighteenth-century styles known as Rococo and Neo-Classicism. Neither term adequately describes the breadth and complexity of the art produced in the eighteenth century, and neither satisfactorily identifies the complexities and contradictions of the cultural milieu that supported this visual culture. In place of these over-simplified terms, we will consider themes such as the pictorial sublime; the picturesque; the hierarchy of the genres, the role of scientific progress and philosophical debate, art and industry, urbanization; travel and exploration, politics and revolution, and the taste for the antique – in short the influence of the intellectual movement known as the Enlightenment.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 230 SOCIAL USES OF MEDIA

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 233 THINKING THROUGH THE COPY

What is a copy? The question may seem trivial and the answer obvious, yet just what do we mean when we say a work is a copy? Is a copy the same thing as a reproduction, replication, repetition, imitation, duplicate, or facsimile? And what of related terms such as fake, forgery or counterfeit? Throughout history artists have addressed the work of others, and sometimes their own work, from the point of view of imitating it, appropriating it, and refashioning it. As a practice copying in its many forms has underpinned the production of art since earliest times. As a theory imitation precedes notions of authenticity and originality, and may be said to bring these latter concepts into being. This course will examine copying across the full range visual media – painting, sculpture, architecture, printmaking photography, film and new media.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 234 ART AND ENVIRONMENT

Environment is the unification of space, time, and value. What does art have to do with it? This seminar examines the possibilities of art by considering its engagement with or alienation from the living worlds and beyond. It challenges the dualist views of culture and nature by instead examining the interdependence and interconnections among human bodies and other living organisms or non-living things. It will consider current pressing issues of Anthropocene, climate change, eco-aesthetics and the dark sides of the ecosystems, as well as the economy and politics of scaling relative to the views of the local, global, and planetary spaces. Besides reading a set of interdisciplinary literature on relevant topics, we will focus on examples and case studies of Chinese landscape paintings throughout history.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 235 MEDIUM&MATERIALITY IN CHI

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2011

AH 236 HISTORY OF FRENCH CINEMA

This course surveys the history of French cinemafrom its early experiments through the "Tradition of Quality" to the moment imeediately preceding the emergence of the New Wave. We will study films selected from the work of the following directors: Lumier, Melies, Gance, Dulac, Leger, Clair, Vigo, Renoir, Carne, Ophuls, Pagnol, Clement, and Bresson. Readings will include contemporary critical and theoretical discussions, as well as historical analyses.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 237 ISLAMIC ARCHITECTURE IN CONTEXT

This course presents a review of key works of Islamic architecture from pre-modern, early modern and modern times. It will also focus on key historiographic trends from the last two centuries, introducing critical issues surrounding orientalism, imperialism, abstraction, ornament, symbolism and expertise. This course does not aim to essentialize Islamic architecture or its temporal or geographic categories. It will rather challenge and think anew the traditions that have formulated this relatively young and, as some have described, “unwieldy” field of art history. Emphasis will be placed on the multicultural and polyvalent traditions of the built environment in the Islamic world. Prior knowledge of Islam or architecture is not necessary, as important concepts and terms will be introduced through readings and discussed in class.The course emphasizes writing, critical thinking, and presentation skills through class discussions and a multi-component digital term project.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 238 AFRICAN ART TODAY

Feminist art historians have changed the way we think about images of women, works by women artists, and the very notion of artistic genius. This course will investigate the way in which visual images of women participate with other cultural and social factors in the construction of the idea of woman. It will look at types and conventions in works by male and female artists, as well as in anonymous prints and advertising from different periods, with a concentration on the 19th and 20th centuries. Readings will introduce a variety of approaches.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 239 DOCUMENTARY FILM AND MEDIA

This course explores the intellectual, social, political, economic and religious aspects of medieval culture of the 12th and 13th centuries through its art and architecture. There will be stylistic and iconographical analysis of the monument as well as a consideration of the materials and techniques of the artists and the structural developments of the architecture. The organization of the lectures will provide the main guideline in course content, but reading assignments and extensive classroom discussion will be equally emphasized, and individual inquiries will be encouraged in the selection of topics.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 240 ANDY WARHOL: TOPICS IN CONT

As the most famous artist of the second half of the twenthieth century, Warhol has been the subject of a growing literature that expands upon art history and criticism to encompass queer theory and cultural studies. But the most important shift in Warhols reception has been brought about by the restoration and return to circulation of his prolific film output from the years 1963-69. The films will be the main focus of this course, but we will also consider Warhols early work as a fashion illustrator, his entrepreneurship at the Factory, his voracious collecting, and, of course, his paintings. We will read Warhols writings, including A a Novel. The Philosophy of Andy Warhol, and Popism; and we will examine new approaches to Warhol and ask how they illuminate not only the art but also such issues as consumption, publicity, visibility, celebrity, sexuality, identity, and selfhood.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 241 AESTHETICS

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2015

AH 242 HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY: 1839-1915

The French author Roland Barthes described the emergence of photography in the early 19th century as a “truly unprecedented type of consciousness.” This class traces the emergence of this photographic consciousness in the 19th century as it develops within a number of specific arenas of culture & representation, from the medium’s conception in the early 19th century to its modernization in the early 20th century. The class will allow for general discussion of the history of photography with some detailed discussion of particular photographers, images, & texts. The class will look at photography as a cultural phenomenon as much as an art form, critically studying the various discursive arenas that this new medium helped to foster and redefine. We will also ask what makes photographic images so compelling, what we expect to see in them & what, distinguishes in the photographic realm a document from an artwork, & an ephemeral image from a material object.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 243 ARCHITECTURE IN THE CLASSICAL WORLD

The architecture of Greece and Rome is fundamental to our understanding of the heritage of the West. We will trace the origin and development of building types in Greece: the temple and its sacred area, buildings of public cultural use such as theaters and the invention of town planning. The development of Roman architecture will also be examined for its sources and meaning, considering local Italic traditions, Etruscan and Greek. In addition to determining the meaning of architectural forms, two major themes will be followed: the spatial aspect of planning and building and the inventiveness of Roman constructional practices.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 244 (AREZZO) ART, ARCHITECTURE

When we look at works of art in museums, galleries, and churches we are, in most cases, looking at them out of context. Furthermore, when we look at early Renaissance paintings we do not see them through the eyes of the people who produced them or for whom they were produced. We have to learn to see them as they might have been seen. We can begin to do this by learning how to read and to interpret the complex elements at play beneath the immediate surface by setting the artist, his work, and his public in their social and religious historical contexts, and by exploring the universal unspoken language of signs and symbols used by artists. The course content is based on painted forms, i.e., panels, canvases, and frescos from the Trecento and Quattrocento with an emphasis on Tuscan painting. The selection, as far as possible, takes advantage of the availability of works in churches, museums, and galleries within easy visiting distance of Arezzo.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 245 ARCHITECTURE IN THE HIGH MIDDLE AGES

This course introduces the architecture of Western Europe from the eleventh to the fifteenth century. Building of this era is usually divided into two principal phases, Romanesque and Gothic. While there are numerous regional and chronological variations during these centuries, many instances of exchange across Europe and exotic influences through cross cultural contact, the course stresses the pan-European development of structural and aesthetic inventiveness and the extraordinary relation between form and content in buildings, whether churches, monastic communities, houses or castles. All of the works are examined against the changing values of cultures, which constitute the transformation of the West.

Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 246 REPRESENTING AFR-AMERICANS

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Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 247 VISUALIZING DANTE

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Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 248 FRENCH PHILOSOPHY SINCE 1960

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Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 249 PERFORMANCE STUDIES

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Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 250 AGE OF BAROQUE

This course will address the painting, sculpture and architecture of seventeenth-century Europe. The art examined will range from Italian ecclesiastical architecture through to the art of Louis XIVs Versailles, Spanish court art and the art of the Dutch Republic. Artists studied will include Poussin, Rembrandt, Bernini, Borromini, Caravaggio, van Dyck, Velasquez, Rubens, and Vermeer. While there is no one methodology that adequately explains this varied and exuberant period, we will focus on the development of a Baroque way of seeing the better to understand the stylistic break between the Renaissance and the Baroque on the one hand, and the Baroque's relationship to the Rococo on the other. The course will be structured around lectures, but every class will include time for a group discussion. Several classes will be held at the Memorial Art Gallery, utilizing MAGs rich holdings of Baroque painting. Readings will be available via the library's web page and linked to weekly discussions.

Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 251 PREHISTORY OF ANCIENT PERU: THE INCAS AND THEIR ANCESTORS

From Machu Picchu to the geoglyphs on the Nasca desert, the Andean region of South America has a long and rich pre-Columbian history. This course will survey the archaeological approaches to understanding the development of Andean cultures that ranges from hunter-gatherers to the Inca Empire. Some of the prehistoric cultures we will be examining include Caral, Chavin, Nasca, Wari, and the Inca. This will class will also discuss plant and animal domestication, inequality, gender, ceramics, urbanization, and the rise and fall of states and empires.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 252 FILM HISTORY: EARLY CINEMA

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 253 FILM HISTORY: 1929-1959

This course provides a transnational survey of film history, examining the technical and formal aspects of the medium in its production and exhibition. As we explore the development of cinema during this period, we will address a number of aesthetic and technological issues. For example, how did the development of sound technology affect film form? How did it affect cross-cultural cinematic exchange? What is the significance of genre across various film traditions? What did the studio system contribute to Hollywood's success in the international market? How did immigrant and exiled film personnel shape the industries they joined? Weekly screenings and film journals required.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 254 FILM HISTORY: 1959-1989

This course will explore developments in world cinema—industrial, social, and political—from 1959 to 1989. It will explore film aesthetics, technologies, and circulation questions, considering questions like the following: What’s new about the French New Wave? What do we mean by Third Cinema? How do different national cinemas influence each other? In what ways have various national cinemas responded critically to Hollywood’s commercial dominance and to its conventions? How do popular and “art” cinemas speak to each other. How does cinema respond to the pressures and provocations of other media at the inception of the digital age? Weekly screenings and film journals required.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 255 ARTS IN AMERICAN CULTURE

What did it mean to be American? What did America look like, geographically and in terms of its people? What part did art and photography play in documenting and giving an identity to Americans in the century between 1850 and 1950? Attention will be given to documenting and representing the West, immigration, and the emerging urban environment. Students will work with the collections of George Eastman House and the Memorial Art Gallery. Requirements for the course include a short museum paper, a term paper, with draft, and take-home midterm and final exams.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 256 VERNACULAR ARCHITECTURE IN USA

This class provides an in depth exploration of American vernacular architecture. Scholars and architectural professionals apply the term "vernacular architecture" to traditional domestic and agricultural buildings, industrial and commercial structures, 20th century suburban houses, settlement patterns and cultural landscapes; in other words to "ordinary" or "everyday" spaces and places that people encounter daily but rarely think about critically. By looking at the work of scholars from the fields of anthropology, history, American studies, cultural geography, landscape architecture and history, folklore, and material culture we will investigate how these ordinary environments can help us to understand the culture of ordinary people. In particular, we will explore how "cultural landscapes" are created and how they construct frameworks that help us understand the significance that vernacular environments have had for their makers and users.

AH 259 WOMEN, CLOTH & CULTURE

Why is it that throughout history and across different cultures, women are often associated with "soft goods" (cloth) rather than "hard goods" (sculpture)? We will focus on case studies that analyze women's varied roles in the production and use of cloth, from indigenous societies of Africa and the Americas, to colonial encounters in those regions, to modern artistry and the structures of globalized industry. Topics may include: raffia cloth made by royal women in Central Africa, textiles of Maya weavers of Guatemala, 19th century American quilters, Massachusetts "mill girls" of the 1830s, feminist artists of the past fifty years, and women and textile factory work in Asia today

Last Offered: Spring 2012

AH 260 GLOBAL VIDEO GAMES:CULTURES

This course will explore the production, distribution, and consumption of video games as a global phenomenon. Through case studies and hands-on approach, we will consider how the juxtaposition of history, theory, and gaming practices operates in different geographical contexts. Focusing on a combination between regions not usually examined by video game studies as well as mainstream video game market, this course will expose students to a nuanced and fluid picture of video games as a medium and as a culture. No experience in game design or game development is necessary.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 261 BUF RES PROJ:CITY & CONT

This course will explore the city of Buffalo in three contexts of modern design: urban design, landscape design, and architectural design. This course will probe both the specific and universal aspects of these contexts and how the likes of Le Corbusier, Reyner Banham, and Frederick Law Olmsted have held the city up as an exemplar of modernist principles. In addition to a broad survey of literature, students will conduct in depth research on specific designs within the city. This research will work towards material to be included in a permanent exhibition at the new Buffalo Architecture Center, thus giving students unique exposure to the curatorial process for which they will also receive recognition. Students should expect one or two field trips to the city. Course instructor approval required.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

AH 262 IMPRESSIONISM & POST-IMPRESSIONISM

Covering artists from Edouard Manet to Vincent Van Gogh, and from Edgar Degas to Mary Cassatt, this course examines the work and social context of a constellation of artists whose practice in late-nineteenth-century Europe came to be known as Impressionist and Post-Impressionist. These artists’ representations of the city, the suburbs, leisure, labor, class and gender roles communicate a complex worldview in addition to a radical aesthetic. In developing general skills of analysis through the lectures, course readings, and museum visits, students should emerge from the course with a critical comprehension of the artists and their significant works, including the means to interpret the style, subject matter, and history of an emergent modernist art form.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 263 THE ART AND ARCHAEOLOGY OF ANCIENT EGYPT

Ancient Egypt has long fascinated the public, from ancient scholars to modern video game representations. But who were the ancient Egyptians? What led to the powerful artistic and cultural legacy of this ancient area? This course will delve into the main concepts of Egyptian art, archaeology and history, ranging from the Predynastic Period to the last gasp of Cleopatra VII and the Ptolemaic Kingdom. Topics will range from Egyptian religion, temple culture, funerary remains, monumental constructions, daily life, domestic archaeology, dynastic progression and the afterlife. This course will also discuss modern representations of ancient Egypt and the enduring symbols of the culture.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 264 FILMS OF THE 1930S

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Last Offered: Spring 2015

AH 265 PHOTO IN SP & SP AMERICA

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Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 266 AFRICAN-AMERICAN VIS CULTURE

This course will survey African-American visual culture (including painting, sculpture, architecture, pottery, photography, prints, textiles, installations, performance, and video) in the United States from colonial times to the present. Its purpose is to introduce students to a wide range of artistic production and to provide a social historical frame for the interpretation and analysis of works of art. Students will explore the ways in which African-American visual culture has been impacted by the training and education of artists, public and private patronage, art criticism and analysis, and its construction as a category by different art world constituencies. We will read primary sources by W.E.B. Du Bois, Alain Locke, Romare Bearden, and Elizabeth Catlett, as well as engage periods such as slavery, the New Negro movement, the Black Art movement, and postmodernism.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 267 ANIMATION AND THE ARTS

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Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 268 MIDDLE EASTERN CINEMA

This course surveys contemporary Middle Eastern cinema, looking at films from across the region in addition to films about the Middle East. We will watch films that deal with war and conflict, gender and sexuality, modernization and diaspora, keeping in mind current and not-so-current events. We will examine the relationship between film and the development of histories, paying attention to cultural nuance and the idea of geographic genre, while keeping in mind the circulation and distribution of filmic objects. Some films that will be discussed include Persepolis, Waltz with Bashir, Amreeka, Paradise Now. Readings will include work by Edward Said, Hamid Naficy, and theorists of film and visual culture.

Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 269 THE ART MARKET

This course asks what happens if you think about art as a commodity rather than in terms of creators, aesthetics, or iconography. Rather than looking at art as self-expression or the work of individual artists, this course looks at art as a commodity and in relation to economic forces. What determines the value of a work of art or an art object and why does value change over time? We will look at case studies providing a historical perspective and at the present-day explosive art market. We will investigate historical evidence on ways in which art was exchanged and evaluated, and how the profession of art dealing evolved. We will look at how dealers became involved in creating brands for artists and ways in which the contemporary art fair has blurred the line between curator and dealer. We will consider how artists work with and against the market and how art and museums figure in economic development. The class will require short writing assignments, a presentation and a research paper.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 270 CONTEMPORARY CHINESE ART

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Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 273 ETHNOARCHAEOLOGY OF AFRICA

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Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 274 CULTURAL HISTORY OF AMERICAN ARCHITECTURE

Focuses on what the critic Andreas Huyssen calls the perceived "Great Divide" between highbrow and lowbrow forms of culture. Explores the emergence of these divisions and interrogates if and how they have blurred in the recent past.

Last Offered: Fall 2013

AH 276 GENDER & REPRESENTATION

In this examination of gender-based artistic practices in several Native North American societies (including Northwest Coast, Plains, Pueblo, Navajo, and Inuit), we will examine how gendered social and artistic roles have altered in response to colonialism in the last two centuries. We will critique some of the entrenched notions in the literature about Native men and women and their art--among them, notions of sacred male "art" vs. secular female "craft," and authentic vs. touristic products. We will also examine the work of some noteworthy individual artists of the last 100 years in Native North American societies, including some contemporary artists who critique gender roles in their art.

Last Offered: Spring 2010

AH 277 MUSEUM AND 'THE OTHER'

An examination of how museums have represented Native Americans, Africans, African-Americans, and Aboriginal Australians in a more than a century of public exhibits. From Franz Boas’s displays in the American Museum of Natural History in New York in the 1890s to the Native-run National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) in Washington, DC and its critique today, pivotal moments of inquiry will include Indian Art of the United States (NY 1941) and Into the Heart of Africa (Toronto, 1990). Contemporary Native American and African American artists have led the critique of the Euro-American culture of representation. We will consider their issues and exhibits, too. Seminar format.

Last Offered: Spring 2012

AH 278 POPULR FILM GENRES:FILM NOIR

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Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 279 CLOCKS AND COMPUTERS

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Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 280 NATIVE AMERICAN ART & RELIGION

This class will explore the various spiritual and artistic traditions of the indigenous peoples of North America. Ranging from the Canadian arctic to the desert Southwest, we will look at various practices including: shamanism, art and hunting magic in the Arctic, art and curing societies in the Great Lakes and Eastern Woodlands, evidence for religious practice in archaeological contexts, and Kachina societies in the Pueblo southwest. More in-depth readings will focus on Navajo sand painting and healing, and Plains Indian spiritual traditions including the Sun Dance and Vision Quest, and their manifestations in the artistic record. We shall also examine late 19th century crisis cults such as the Ghost Dance Religion, and pan-Indian movements in the 20th century like the Peyote Religion, as well as issues concerning secrecy, privacy, and ethics in the study of Native artistic and religious traditions.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 281 ART & THE CITY: NY IN THE 70's

The recession and fiscal crisis of the 1970s was paradoxically a highly productive period of artistic experimentation in New York City. In the wake of the transforming art movements of the 1960s—Pop, Minimalism, and Conceptual Art—the 1970s saw the invention of new and hybrid media—video art, performance art, and site-specific installation works. As the city’s economy became one based on real estate speculation and financial services, artists moved into the abandoned spaces of nineteenth-century industry. SoHo and Tribeca were remade into living and working spaces for artists, art galleries, and alternative spaces such as 112 Greene Street (now White Columns), the Kitchen Center for Video and Music, and Artists Space. By the end of the decade a new artists’ group that came to be known as the Pictures generation began showing in these alternative spaces. In this seminar we will study how the de-industrialization of New York contributed to new kinds of art making and examine how artists used the city.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 282 TOPICS IN CONTEMPORARY ART AND CRITICISM

Examines specific practices of art and architecture from the 1960s through the 1990s in relation to theories of postmodernism.

Last Offered: Spring 2011

AH 283 CONTEMPORARY FRENCH FILM

Through close analysis of popular film, this course explores contemporary French culture as it reworks national identity. Focusing on changing definitions of “Frenchness” the course examines its articulations with shifting conceptions of tradition, of the popular, and of the nation. Readings include central cultural conflicts around identity and difference in the context of the emergent European economic community, as well as the specifically French context of “immigration” and “assimilation.” Of particular interest is the comparative analysis of French and U.S. popular discourses on social issues involving sexuality and gender, race, ethnicity, and “multiculturalism.” Films include works by Bertrand Blier, Luc Bresson, Andre Techine, Cyril Collard [SAVAGE NIGHTS], Mathieu Kassovitz, Claire Denis, François, Ahmed Bouchaala [KRIM], Karim Dridi [Bye-Bye] as well as recent works by such widely known auteurs as Claude Chabrol and Jean-Luc Godard.

Last Offered: Fall 2012

AH 284 MODERN ARCHITECTURE & URBANISM: LA MODERN

The architecture of Los Angeles will serve two different purposes in this seminar. On the one hand, we will study the whole range of modern architecture--from mission style (Gill), arts and crafts (Greene and Greene), and the early modernists (Wright, Schindler), to high modernism (Neutra, the Case Study houses), and postmodernism (Gehry)--as a singular regional, but nevertheless representative development of modern architecture. On the other hand, using architecture as a starting point, we will look at the strange utopia/dystopia of Los Angeles as an example of a new kind of urbanism and style of living. Our texts will include not only studies of architecture, but also Hollywood films (Chinatown, Bladerunner), detective novels (Raymond Chandler), new journalism (Joan Didion), and urban theory (Reyner Bahnam, Mike Davis).

Prerequisites: Introduction to VCS or Introduction to Art History
Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 285 HISTORY OF PHOTOGRAPHY II

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 286 PIC SPACE: HIST & ANALYSIS

Space in painting has existed from the time of the earliest cave art, such as that of Lascaux in France, in the sense that any two-dimensional image must exhibit a determinate relationship to its ground or support. In this course we will pay attention to these questions through a series of case studies centered on critical moments in the development of pictorial space. Topics to be considered will include the origin of perspective; computer simulation and virtual reality; perspective as symbolic form; the Sublime, the Beautiful, and the Picturesque; twentieth-century abstraction; the camera obscura and drawing aids; theories of Renaissance picturing; photography and the moving image; pictorial space and time; Post-Impressionism and Cubism; and sculptural space in the Baroque.

Last Offered: Spring 2012

AH 287 CULTURE ON DISPLAY

This course looks at the phenomenon of the museum, asking questions about the relation of culture and institutions. How do museums and the selection of what things go into them and the way objects are arranged and displayed shape the way we think about our past, about art? Why are "natural history" and "history" and "art" displayed in different institutions? What are the implications of reproduction for the "original"? Do museums have a future?

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 288 PHILOSOPHY OF ART

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Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 289 COMIC BOOKS

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 290 POLISH ART: PAST & PRESENT

The development of Polish art since the 10th c. Special emphasis will be placed on the importance of Poland within Europe, including the formative effects of geopolitics on the development of Polish artistic movements, Polish church art, folk art, poster and architecture. In-depth art history lectures will be conducted both at the University and in museums. The course will be accompanied by a program of field trips. Offered on location in Krakow.

Last Offered: Summer 2015

AH 292 THE MODERN CITY

This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to examining the modern city in both moments of triumph and crisis. The idea of the "city" has played a major role in conceptualizing modernity (as well as Postmodernity). We will look at representations of the metropolis in painting, photography, film and philosophy. Using critical theory, urban planning documents, as well as fictional accounts, we will explore competing ideological perspectives on and debates over the place of the city in modern culture.

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 292W THE MODERN CITY

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Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 299G DIGITAL ARCHAEOLOGY AFRICA

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Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 300 ART NY NEW MEDIA CULTURE

Harvestworks will offer this course as an introduction to digital art for Art New York interns. Special application is required. Permission of instructor only.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 302 ARCHAEOLOGY OF AFRICA

No description

Last Offered: Spring 2016

AH 305K ART NEW YORK COLLOQUIM

As an integral part of the internship program, all students participating in ANY will meet weekly with the program's resident director. The class will visit museums, art galleries, film & media screenings, & learn from these visits through readings, papers, presentations & discussions. The colloquium will also serve to provide an intellectual framework for understanding the operations of the NY art world & to allow students to discuss with one another their experiences at the various institutions where they intern. Each student will be expected to make a presentation about their internship to the ANY group. There will be an entrepreneurial component which will introduce the students to a wide variety of entrepreneurial activity & innovative practices within arts and culture. Through guest speakers, seminars & field trips the students will learn how entrepreneurial endeavors develop. By the end of the semester, the students will create their own proposal for an entrepreneurial project.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 306 THE SUBLIME

The principal objective of the course is to undertake a reevaluation of the received ideas associated with the operation of the sublime in 18th century art, literature and thought. We will consider first the concept in the writings of Edmund Burke and Immanuel Kant, the better to understand the parameters of a notion that shaped not only 18th century aesthetic theory but also provided the conditions for the advent of Romanticism. Following this groundwork we will consider a series of topics, including the paintings of Joseph Wright of Derby, Fuselis illustrations to John Milton, the art and poetry of William Blake, the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson, and the American Sublime. Themes in the course will include the classical sublime, the scientific industrial sublime, the beautiful and the sublime, the picturesque, the natural sublime, the transcendental sublime; and the romantic sublime.

Last Offered: Spring 2013

AH 307 RHETORIC OF THE FRAME

The task of any discussion of frames and framing in the visual arts whether in painting, sculpture, film, performance, architecture, graphic novels and cartoon strips, or digital media - is first and foremost to counter the tendency of framing devices to invisibility with respect to the artwork they supposedly contain. We see the work, but we do not see the frame. It is against this tendency to ignore the frame that this seminar is directed. At first glance the frame may seem to be as unproblematic. Starting from a consideration of the foundational texts of frame theory in the philosophy of Immanuel Kant, we will examine the discursive limits of the material and non-material border in the writings of, among others, Mayer Schapiro, Martin Heidegger, Jean-Claude Lebensztejn, Louis Marin, Craig Owens, and Jacques Derrida.

Last Offered: Spring 2015

AH 308 MIMESIS: THEORY & PRACTICE

This seminar course will address the issue of imitation and Mimesis through the consideration of key texts from antiquity to the present. Texts will include the foundational philosophies of Plato and Aristotle, the many theorists of literature and art of the sixteen and seventeenth-centuries who wrote on imitation, and the reaction against imitation in modern art. Both graduate and undergraduate students will have the opportunity to select a topic related to their own interests and develop it into a research paper, graduate students will in addition present their paper in class.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

AH 311 DANCE, ART, AND FILM

This course explores relations among dance, art,and film at significant moments in the 20th & 21st centuries. We will study instances in which the forms are closely aligned, including the famous productions by artists Gontcharova, Picasso, & Matisse, for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes; Martha Graham’s partnership with Isamu Noguchi; & Merce Cunningham’s work with Robert Rauschenberg. We will look simply at how dance is filmed or how dance uses film. The course will concentrate on two figures of the postwar American avant-garde: Merce Cunningham & Yvonne Rainer. Cunningham’s dances choreographed for film in collaboration with film & video makers & Rainer’s move from choreography to filmmaking & eventually to hybrids of the two will constitute the core of the course. Other major figures will be explored: choreographers George Balanchine, Doris Humphrey, Trisha Brown, William Forsythe, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker; & filmmakers Maya Deren, Ed Emshwiller; Babette Mangolte, Dominique Delouche, Thierry de May, etc.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 313 ARCHITECTURE, PHOTOGRAPHY, MODERNISM/POSTMODERNISM

The subject of this course is inspired by a series of photographs commissioned from Hiroshi Sugimoto for the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Arts’ exhibition At the End of the Century: One Hundred Years of Architecture. Sugimoto’s photographs show canonical works of modern architecture shot out of focus, reduced to both icon and phantom. The seminar considers the changing relations between photography and architecture, between image and space, between picture and object from the advent of modernism to the present. The course looks at these relations in the New Objectivity and the New Vision, Surrealism, the International Style, Mid-Century Modern, and ends by considering the uses of the photography of architecture in Conceptual art and the fascination with modernist architecture in contemporary photographic work. Students read critical studies of modernist architecture and photography and plot the relations between these discourses and practices.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 314 ITINERANT THINGS

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 316 PHOTOGRAPHY & THE EVERYDAY

What is the value of the everyday in modern and contemporary culture? And how does photography permit greater, more immediate access to ordinary life? This seminar will explore these two related questions starting with the underlying assumption that the modern experience is unthinkable without the proliferation of photographic technologies. Studio portraits, identification cards, family snapshots, newspaper photos, posters, and viral images all represent as well as constitute the ins-and-outs of daily life in ways conscious and unconscious, thoughtful and entirely indiscriminate.

Last Offered: Spring 2016

AH 317 STREET PHOTOGRAPHY

This seminar course explores critical issues in the photographic history of urban public space from glass negatives to Google’s “street view.” With the advent of fast exposures and hand-held cameras in the late nineteenth century, photographic practice quickly merged with the experiences of men and women on the level of the street. Street photography – whether viewed as a genre, a practice, a historical phenomenon, or a formal canon – takes on the subject of urban space and its occupants, exploring everything from pavement stones, graffiti, lights, cars, and trains, to pigeons, pedestrians, crowds, mobs, and demonstrations. Some photographers in this category dedicated themselves to a visual style that matched the spontaneity of urban life, while others sought to record identity, history, and politics as it unfolded in the public sphere. Class participants will examine the photographs and photographers that define street photography, which practices are behind this class of images, and where street photograph

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 319 MATERIAL CULTURE

This upper-level course interrogates the cultural meaning of things in an increasingly digital age. Paying attention to objects in their native as well as virtual frameworks, we will look at a variety of media ( film, photography, fine art, popular culture) in material and on-line contexts to investigate paradigm shifts in 21st century scholarship, archiving, and understanding of material culture.

Last Offered: Spring 2015

AH 320 THE POLITICS OF SPACE

In this class we will explore how space is constructed and politicized. From the 19th century flaneur to 21st century cyber communities, from the global economy to domestic interiors, space has been and continues to be ideologically contested terrain. Together we will explore these contests. We will pay close attention to questions of identity formation, particularly as they relate to issues of gender, race and class. In addition, we will investigate the importance of technology in transforming the ways in which we think about space. Permission of instructor only.

Last Offered: Spring 2014

AH 321 WORD AND IMAGE

The connection between word and image is foundational to the study of both art and literature. Whether the interaction is one of collaboration or hostility, study of the relationship between verbal and visual languages reveals their mutual interdependence on a multipicity of levels. From consideration of the so-called 'sister arts' of painting and poetry and the role of titles, captions and illustrations to the interaction of the verbal and the visual in graphic novels and ekphrastic criticism, word and image cannot be separated. This course will address a selection of readings and topics designed to introduce the student to a broad range of themes and issues within word and image studies.

Prerequisites: Permission of Instructor
Last Offered: Spring 2012

AH 323 MATERIALITY IN ARCHITECTURE

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 325 AUTHORSHIP: ANXIETY OF INFLUENCE

Authorship is a key issue in both contemporary art practices and in visual culture, where it is frequently dispersed by social groups, by mediums (including such loosely defined “mediums” as the city or the public), and even theoretical frameworks (e.g. of postnationality, postracial identity, or the problematic of equality). This course lays out the prehistory of contemporary approaches to authorship in critical theory and practice. It is a reading-intensive seminar based on weekly discussions and the development of individual research projects.

Last Offered: Spring 2013

AH 326 NEW HIST OF POSTWAR ART II

This is an intensive reading seminar that examines new texts by the emerging generation of art historians. We read books published in the last few years in three discrete historical areas dada, Soviet constructivism, and postwar American art but focus most of our interest in their hybrid methodologies, combining psychoanalytic and Marxist theory with the work of other 20th century thinkers, from Bataille to Deleuze. Secondary readings accompany each primary text, and grades are based on class participation, reading presentations prepared jointly with other class members; and a short paper expanding the student's presentation.

Last Offered: Fall 2010

AH 340 THE ART OF INDUSTRY

Where do technological rationalism and aesthetic beauty converge? The course will address this question through an examination of things and places produced from the advent of the Industrial Revolution to the present, with a specific emphasis on the built environment as well as global contexts of industrial production. Theoretical and primary texts, including works by Marx, Benjamin, Loos, Le Corbusier, Kracauer, Banham and Appadurai, will contextualize a series of thematic concerns including the rise of an industrial vernacular, the “machine aesthetic”, the interrelationship of form and function, international transmutations of technology, Taylorism and Fordism, mass production and the industrial ruin. Subjects considered will include factories and plants, mass housing systems, objects of industrial design as well as artistic representations thereof. The course will be rooted in discussion but may be supplemented by formal presentations as appropriate.

Prerequisites: Field trips in the Rochester area will be a critical aspect of the class. Students will be encouraged to develop a digital component to a term research project in consultation with the instructor.
Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 341 ART OF INFRASTRUCTURE

This course will examine the aesthetics of several key typologies of human infrastructure in modern times. Most works of civil engineering and other built manifestations of human organization are typically thought of in the contexts of utility, efficiency and functionality and not as veritable objects of beauty born of design philosophy. This broad overview, everything from sidewalks to transport networks, demonstrates that infrastructure has, counter to common believe, very often been at the forefront of aesthetic thought and has played a formative role in rendering human innovation and ingenuity in visual and physical terms. This seminar is organized typologically and will comprise the reading of one recent scholarly book per week from a broad range of disciplines including the history of architecture, the history of science, history, science and technology studies and the history of art. The course material will be augmented by three field trips to important sites in the Rochester area.

Last Offered: Fall 2015

AH 348 DIG MEDIA & PART. CULTURES

This course will explore the notion that digital media technologies have liberating potentials to further democratic empowerment and produce a more inclusive public sphere. We will focus our exploration on the concept of participatory cultures in which developments of digital media technologies have transformed passive users into progressive and active “produsers” (producers and users), indicative in the concept of Web 2.0’s “user-generated content.” We are going to explore how contemporary digital media’s participatory characteristics affect strategies and manifestations in social and political activisms at a global scale. We will study, for instance, how social networking platforms and mobile computing have placed powerful capabilities in the hands of individuals who collectively have used them in innovative ways to break free of powerful forces, expose corruption, challenge institutional surveillance, and even bring down regimes once thought immoveable—such as in the case of the “Arab Spring.”

Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 350 TOPICS CONTEMPORARY ART & CRITICISM

This course offers a concentrated analysis of specific decades, and art movements, or even particular artists’ careers with particular attention to shifting critical paradigms.

Last Offered: Fall 2010

AH 354 FILMS OF JEAN-LUC GODARD

This course will survey the career of Jean-Luc Godard from Breathless (1959) to In Praise of Love (2001. Through close analysis of his films and range of critical responses we will explore numerous issues that Godard places before us as spectators and critics. While Godard is perhaps most famous, even notorious, for his commitment to politically engaged cinema, his interests in history and aesthetics remain central across this divers corpus. Although he is known for his experiments in style and medium, he also remains committed to traditional film history and art history. We will explore the complex relationships his films establish between image and word, between sound and image, between stillness and motion. Our analyses will examine the central importance of literature and art history, as well as of popular culture, to the individual films and the corpus as a whole.

Last Offered: Spring 2012

AH 355 FEMINIST FILM THEORY

Feminism has had a powerful impact on the developing field of film theory from the 1970s to the present. This course will examine the major feminist work on film, moving from the earlier text-based psychoanalytic theories of representation to theories of feminine spectatorship to studies of reception contexts and audience. We will also give attention to the very important role of feminist theory in television studies. Weekly screenings, keyed to the readings, will allow us to test the value of these positions for close critical analysis of the film or television text. Readings to include: Laura Mulvey, Kaja Silverman, Constance Penley, Judith Mayne, Linda Williams, Jacqueline Bobo, Valerie Smith, Lynn Spigel, Lynne Joyrich, Julie D'Acci.

Last Offered: Fall 2014

AH 361 CLASSICAL FILM THEORY

This course examines the philosophical, aesthetic, and social issues that are central to classical film theory. It traces the historical development of film theory from 1900 to the 1950s. We will begin with on thinkers in the period of early cinema, including Germaine Dulac, Jean and Marie Epstein, and then we will examine the development of film theory in the work of later theorists, such as Jean Mitry, Sergei Eisenstein, Dziga Vertov, Siegfried Kracauer, Walter Benjamin, Andre Bazin and Christian Metz. Weekly screenings of historically contemporary films will allow us to examine the ongoing dialogue between the evolving medium and the developing theoretical discussion.

Prerequisites: FMS 132 - Intro to Art of Film OR FMS 131 - Intro to Media Studies
Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 380 LITERATURE AFTER TV

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2012

AH 385 VISUAL CULTURE OF HERITAGE & IDENTITY

Cultural critic Stuart Hall has observed “Heritage is a discursive practice. It is one of the ways in which the nation slowly constructs for itself a sort of collective social memory.” In this upper level seminar, we will look at case studies of how people (through the collectivities of gender, ethnicity, race, or nation) construct visual narratives about the past. Among the topics for consideration are Holocaust memorials, Native American and Polynesian museums and cultural centers, African American quilt histories, and even individual artists’ projects of the last few decades (Judy Chicago, Fred Wilson, Silvia Gruner, José Bedia, and Jolene Rickard, among others). Readings will be drawn principally from the disciplines of history, anthropology, cultural studies, and art criticism.

Prerequisites: Juniors and Seniors in Art History, Anthropology and History, as well as graduate students, will have preference in registering for this course. Familiarity with the language and theoretical concerns of cultural studies or anthropology would be helpful.
Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 386V VISITING STUDENT IN ART HIST

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Last Offered: Summer 2015

AH 390 SUPERVISED TEACHING

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Last Offered: Fall 2016

AH 391 INDEPENDENT STUDY

Independent study under faculty guidance of a limited field of art history or individual study on a single topic at an advanced level under the guidance of a member of the art history faculty.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 391W INDEPENDENT STUDY

Independent study under faculty guidance of a limited field of art history or individual study on a single topic at an advanced level under the guidance of a member of the art history faculty.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 392 PRACTICUM

Each student will intern in an institution arranged or approved by the Art and Art History faculty. The purpose of this internship is to give students an insiders' view of the workings of the art world. Students will be expected to document their internship experiences as a means of evaluation at the end of the semester. This program is limited to second, third, fourth and fifth year undergraduate students interested in learning about all aspects of contemporary art, about how art gets made, how it reaches its public, and the processes of its interpretation. Internships will consist of 20 hours per week, for which students will receive eight credits. Permission of instructor required.

Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 393 ART HISTORY HONORS PROJECT

See "Requirements for Honors in Art History."

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 393W ART HISTORY HONORS PROJECT

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 394 INTERNSHIPS

Internships in London and the United States.

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 394A EURPEAN ARTS INTERNSHIP

No description

Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 394B EURO ARTS INTRNSP BELGIUM

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Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 394G EUR ARTS INTRNSP BONN,GRMNY

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Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 394L UK ARTS INTRNSP LONDON

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Last Offered: Summer 2017

AH 396 MUSEUM INTERNSHIP

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Last Offered: Fall 2017

AH 397 EUROPEAN ARTS INTERNSHIP

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Last Offered: Spring 2017

AH 397F UK ARTS INTERNSHIP

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Last Offered: Summer 2016

AH 397G LONDON ARTS INTERNSHIP

No description

Last Offered: Summer 2012

AH 398 SENIOR SEMINAR: CONTEMPORARY ART

The Seminar in Contemporary Art is a course designed to bring together studio art and art history majors and minors in an extended discussion of contemporary artistic practices. We often look backwards to the 1960s or earlier but usually focus on a method, issue, or aspect to contemporary art (e.g. participation; photography; authorship). This course prepares students for critical engagement with contemporary art practices and can serve as an excellent preparation for Art New York or for a career in the arts.

Prerequisites: Introduction to VCS or Introduction to Art & Visual Culture
Last Offered: Fall 2017