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Art History & Museum Studies Minor

This minor is open to students from any concentration in the Department of Visual Arts, as well students majoring in other disciplines who are interested in gaining a deeper understanding about the context in which artwork is produced. This context comprises the complex network of artistic intentions, historical circumstances, economic opportunities, and socio-political agendas that shape artists’ production and viewers’ reception of art objects. Students interested in pursuing this minor should contact a faculty member in the Art history area for further details and advisement.

Visual Arts, Art History & Museum Studies Minor

ART 216 (C/AH) [3]
Studies in Visual Culture (Prehistory through the 1750s) [3]
This course engages students in a focused study of six or seven specific, momentous periods in the history of world art dating from prehistory to the mid-eighteenth century. The selection of topics will be determined by the particular organizing principle adopted by the course instructor. For example, the organizing principle could be that of medium (architecture, painting, sculpture, decorative arts); of belief systems (religion, philosophy); of patronage; or of prevailing technological inventions and discoveries. By studying selected moments in the history of world art in some depth, students will gain an awareness of how art objects and visual culture both shape and represent societies and their histories.

OR BOTH of the following courses:

ART 220 (AH) [3]
Art History I
A survey of the major movements of Western painting, sculpture and architecture through the end of the Middle Ages. Slide lectures will explore the development of artistic traditions through an analysis of style and cultural contexts. Note: This course may be taken independently of Art History II.

ART 221 (AH) [3]
Art History II
A survey that traces the key movements in Western painting, sculpture and architecture from the beginning of the Renaissance to the 20th century. Slide lectures will explore how various historical, social, religious and intellectual currents are reflected in the style and content of works of art. Note: This course may be taken before Art History I.

Select THREE of the following courses:

ART 321 (C/AH) [3]
19th-Century Art
A study of the visual arts centering on the 19th century, with an emphasis on the changing social and aesthetic conditions that influenced later art forms. From the French Revolution to the impact of photography, the 19th century gave rise to revolution and innovation. Art reflected and responded to these conditions with its own radical shifts in style and content from romanticism to realism, impressionism to symbolism. This course will explore how the developments of the 19th century laid the foundation for modernism.
Prerequisite: ART 220 or ART 221

ART 323 (AH) [3]
20th-Century Art
A survey of visual art of the twentieth century, beginning with European movements (e.g. cubism, German expressionism, Italian futurism, Russian constructivism, dada and surrealism) and continuing to developments in American art (e.g. the Harlem renaissance, social realism, abstract expressionism). The course closes with reactions to Abstract Expressionism in forms such as pop art, happenings, minimalism and conceptual art, with a brief glimpse at newer media. All art historical developments will be considered in their specific sociopolitical and economic contexts.

Note:ART 323 20th-Century Art is designated as a gateway course for students concentrating in art history and theory and must be passed with a grade of “B” or better. Prerequisite: ART 221.

ART 328 (AH) [3]
Postmodernism (1960 – present) [3]
The period from the 1960s onwards witnessed the almost simultaneous challenge to Modernism in a host of movements in the USA, Europe and, increasingly, around the world. This new phase in art, that some art historians termed Postmodernism, opened up the boundaries of the art world as never before to new practitioners, new media and new centers of contemporary art practice, while the term itself became the subject of great debate. The course will end with a survey of current developments in art of the twenty-first century. All art historical developments will be considered in their specific sociopolitical and economic contexts.
Prerequisite: ART 216 or ART 221 or permission of the instructor.

ART 329 (AH) [3]
Postmodernism (1960 – present) [3]
The topic of this course will be concerned with major currents and stylistic directions in the history of art and media in the nineteenth through the twenty-first centuries. In some instances the course content will focus on a specific art historical period or movement; others will trace a prominent theme through several periods. The topic of the course will change depending on the expertise of the instructor teaching the course.
Note: Repeatable for a total of 6 credits.
Prerequisite: ART 216 or ART 221

Additionally two electives are required; one of which must be a history of art seminar (Art 424, Art 425, Art 427, Art 428, Art 429). The other course can be a history of medium course (Art 324, Art 325, Art 326, Art 327, Art 335, Art 343, Art 480); or the student may choose a second art history seminar.