Fall Course Guide

Courses in History of Art (Division 392)

Fall Term, 1998 (September 8-December 21, 1998)

The History of Art department lists the course descriptions illustrated with images chosen by the professor to further demonstrate the concerns of the course at http://www.umich.edu/~hartspc/histart/coursedescriptions.html

History of Art 101, 102, 103 and 108, while covering different areas, are all considered equivalent introductions to the discipline of art history. These four introductory survey courses consider not only art objects as aesthetic experiences but also the interactions among art, the artist, and society. The lecture and discussion sections explore the connections between the style and content of works of art and the historical, social, religious, and intellectual phenomena of the time. Attention is also given to the creative act and to the problems of vision and perception which both the artist and his/her public must face.

Although it would be logical to move from History of Art 101 to History of Art 102, this is not required. One course in European/American art (101 or 102) and one course in Asian or African art (103 or 108) serve as a satisfactory introduction to the history of art for non-concentrators (concentrators should see the department's handbook for more information on requirements). The introductory courses are directed toward students interested in the general history of culture and are especially valuable cognates for students in the fields of history, philosophy, literature, and musicology as well as the creative arts.

Course requirements and texts vary with individual instructors, but an effort is always made to introduce students to works of art in the collections of the university as well as in the museums of Detroit and Toledo. Photographic material is available for study in the Image Study Gallery, G026 Tisch Hall. Examinations usually include short essays and slides which are to be identified, compared, and discussed.

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Open to All Undergraduates; Not Open to Graduate Students.

101. Near Eastern and European Art from the Stone Age to the End of the Middle Ages. (4). (HU).
This course offers an introduction to major monuments and periods of art from antiquity through the Middle Ages. Its purpose is not only to acquaint students with key works of Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Islamic, Romanesque and Gothic art and architecture, but also to help them develop a vocabulary for the description and analysis of works of art, and to provide them with a basic understanding of the methods and aims of art historical study. Lectures will be supplemented by weekly discussion sections on readings drawn from a general art historical survey and a course pack. Written work will consist of two short papers on objects in the Kelsey Museum and the Museum of Art; there will be a midterm and a final examination. This course, with History of Art 102, is meant to provide a foundation in the history of western art and will be useful to students taking higher level courses in the department. Cost:2 WL:4 (Thomas)
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112/Art 112. History of Photography. (4). (HU).
This course will explore the history of photography in the 19th and 20th century through a comparative study of photographs, photographers, and theories about the nature of photography. The goal is to create an understanding of the themes and issues, concepts and contexts associated with photographic image-making from American and international perspectives. One intent is that at the end of the study the student should be aware of some of the diverse concerns in present day photography and be able to identify their origins and influences. The class should interest students from a wide range of disciplines. Class structure combines three hours of lecture sessions a week for general structured presentation of material, with one hour of discussion section that meets weekly for deeper study of the main theories about the nature of photography and its role in shaping our understanding of the world. Assignments will include readings from course texts and completion of some computer-based tasks using special programs developed for use with this program. Grades will be based on participation in discussion sections, three essays, and a final exam. Cost:2 WL:4 (Kusnerz)
See: http://www-personal.umich.edu/~lily/web112.html
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113/Art 113. Introduction to the Visual Arts. This course is for non-art majors only. (3). (Excl).
Visual arts are a part of the human experience in all cultures and all time periods. The ability to appreciate, to understand, and to assess the quality of visual art can enrich a person's life and broaden one's thinking. This course will introduce students having no formal art or art historical background to the major forms of visual expression through human history from the Stone Age to the present. We will examine works of art in various media such as painting, drawing, printmaking, photography, sculpture, architecture, graphics, and industrial design. Students will learn how artists use the language of form to communicate information, to express emotion, and to explore the world of nature and the world of the mind. Students will learn the basic techniques of the various media. Students will learn how the art of a time and place defines and expands the boundaries of that culture. Assigned readings and visits to museums and galleries will help students become critical consumers of the visual culture as they learn to see, appreciate, and assess art forms. Requirements include periodic quizzes, a final exam, and a term paper. Students will also make some ungraded drawings and paintings as analytical tools. (Kapetan)
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194. First Year Seminar. Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor. (3). (HU).
Section 001 From Monk to Courtesan: The Portrayal of Extraordinary Men and Beautiful Women in Japanese Painting and Prints.
What is involved in the creation of a striking likeness of a monk in Japan? Of an alluring image of a courtesan? How have artists responded to the challenge of portraying a revered Zen master, a celebrated beauty, an exiled emperor, a ruthless warrior? Follow the trajectory of ten centuries of Japanese portrait-making, from the earliest attempts to preserve the physical remains of deceased monks to the latest in the fashionable portrayal of women. Explore the issues involved in achieving or eschewing physiognomic accuracy and along the way learn to distinguish stylistic conventions for aristocrats and warriors, urban intellectuals and entertainers, courtesans and female impersonators, monks and nuns. Course requirements include weekly readings and short written assignments, brief quizzes and class participation, and a final paper. Cost:3 WL:4 (Sharf)

Section 002 Art and Life in Nineteenth-Century America. This seminar asks what the study of art history and American history can tell us about each other through an intensive focus on a complex period in the past. The nineteenth century saw the transformation of the United States from a rural to an industrial, urban nation; a Civil War that divided the country, Westward expansion that enlarged it, and waves of immmigration and border movement that changed its population; and the emergence of women into public and professional life. American artists and architects sought to rival their European comtemporaries and eventually produce distinctive works that responded to national trends, culminating in such icons as the landscape photographs of Carlton Watkins, the realist paintings of Winslow Homer, and the Impressionism of Mary Cassatt, and the rise of a new architectural form: the skyscraper.

Through hands-on research in archives and visits to see original works of art in museums, we will examine both developments in the fine arts and the impact of historical change on the material and popular culture of everyday life in America. Among the topics to be investigated are: the role of art in creating an image of America as "nature's nation"; machine-made art and machines-as-art; the West as viewed from the painter's easel, the photographer's lens, and the frontier homestead; the interaction of Native American artists, Anglo settlers, and the tourist trade; the creation of Civil War monuments; parlors and the ideology of the Victorian home; the brooding psychology in the Gilded-Age paintings of Eakins, Homer, and Cassatt. Reading assignments include historical sources and recent critical interpretations of nineteenth-century American art. Requirements: informed participation in class discussion; two research projects using collections on campus and on-line. The class will include field trips to the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Henry Ford Museum, and possibly to the Cassatt exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago. (Zurier)
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211/WS 211. Gender and Popular Culture. (4). (HU).
"Popular culture" is a complex social system, and this course concentrates on its visual manifestations in various media. We focus on women as signs or emblems, as producers, and as consumers, of "popular culture", with attention also to the representation of masculinity and of race/ethnicity. Mainstream and marginal, appropriated and subverting, reflective and formative, the "popularity" of certain cultures often places them outside an academic framework, but this course seeks to alter that exclusion. After a brief thematic introduction, we focus on contemporary American culture, examining such examples as advertising; Ken and Barbie dolls; parental roles in film and television; romance in fiction or films like Pretty Woman and Waiting to Exhale; the "buddy" system in action movies and Thelma and Louise; women in music, including Madonna. Student participation will include several short papers, a research paper, a final exam, and regular discussion in classes. Cost:2 WL:2 (Simons)
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221/Class. Arch. 221. Introduction to Greek Archaeology. (4). (HU).
See Classical Archaeology 221. (Pedley)
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250/MARC 250. Italian Renaissance Art, I. (4). (HU).
Section 001 The Art of Florence and Northern Italy, 1300-1490.
How did the works of Giotto, Donatello, Masaccio, Mantegna, and Leonardo come to be regarded as so important in the history of western art? Why, even within the artists' lifetimes, was their art regarded as signaling a "rebirth" of painting and sculpture? To what extent was their legendary reputation seen to serve other social and political interests? This course aims at an understanding of early Renaissance art by seeing it in relation to broader transformations in the culture of the Italian city in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. The city will be viewed as the site of divergent uses of art by different communities and interests, who employed images for the expression of identity and status and as a strategic means of producing consensus or exploiting social division. Lectures and sections will be organized around the exploration of particular genres of visual media - the altarpiece, mural painting, the multimedia chapel, portraiture, and monumental public sculpture. All of these forms are explored as modes of argument and as points of interaction among networks of clients, artists, social groups and institutions (guilds, family associations, courts, confraternities), and figures of authority (saints, mystics, Popes, rulers). From this multiplicity of uses and responses emerged highly varied conceptions of the nature of the image and the role of the artist, which in turn influenced artistic performance. Cost:2 WL:4 (Campbell)
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260. European Painting and Sculpture of the Seventeenth Century. (4). (HU).
This course explores the vital, many-faceted visual culture of seventeenth-century Europe with particular focus on the pictorial and plastic arts. Lectures will consider the extraordinary achievements of such well-known figures as Caravaggio, the Carracci, Artemisia Gentileschi, Bernini, Velázquez, Poussin, Rubens, Van Dyck, Rembrandt, and Vermeer, as well as a range of other visually interesting but less familiar works by their contemporaries. We will be looking not only at painting and sculpture, but also at drawings, prints, maps, and book illustrations, in order glimpse the many ways in which the visual arts came to be used and valued in the seventeenth century. Lectures and weekly readings are designed to situate art within discussions of scientific inquiry, religious practices, politics, cultural encounter, social and economic life. Requirements include informed participation in discussion sections, a midterm quiz, a final examination, and a short paper. Cost:2 WL:2 (Brusati)
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271. Origins of Modernism: Art and Culture in Nineteenth-Century France. (4). (HU).
This course examines a series of remarkable episodes in modern French painting, from the establishment of an official, State-sponsored form of Classicism to the succession of movements Romanticism, Realism, Impressionism, and Neo-Impressionism that emerged in opposition to official art. The Nineteenth Century is the period during which modern art developed its characteristic strategies and behavioral patterns: an insistence on innovation, originality, and individuality; a contentious involvement with tradition; a critical relationship with both institutional and commercial culture; and a somewhat strained allegiance with radical politics and alternative subcultures. It is also the period that witnessed a thorough-going reassessment of visual representation, and a parallel concern with the possibilities and limitations of the medium of painting. The course is designed to encourage close readings of images (by David, Gericault, Manet, Degas, Seurat, Cezanne, et al.) within the parameters of their historical contexts and of recent critical debate. Cost:2 (Lay)
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292. Introduction to Japanese Art and Culture. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in Hist. of Art 495. (3). (HU).
This course will take an interdisciplinary approach to selected topics in the history of Japanese culture. The class will examine the introduction of Buddhism to Japan through the architecture, painting, and sculpture of the 7th-century monastery Horyuji. We will discuss life in the imperial court at its height, as represented by the Illustrated Tale of Genji. One segment will concentrate on the arts of the Tea ceremony, and another on the urban life of 18th-century Edo (Tokyo) as reflected in its literature and woodblock prints. The course will conclude with the treatment of tradition in the graphic arts and architecture of recent decades. Two exams and two short essays will be required. No prerequisites; first- and second-year students are especially welcome. (Reynolds)
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375. Art of the 60's. (3). (Excl).
The 1960's were a time of immense cultural ferment and change. Society moved out of the post-World War II period of recovery into a time of testing norms and values in many areas of society, including the arts. This course explores a cross section of the lively arts scene, especially that in the United States and Europe, in which artists challenged established modes of representation and expression, and struggled to invent new forms that would - they believed be part of a re-energized and more humane world. Among the topics covered will be art that pushed ever further issues of Modernism (including Minimalism, Op, soak-stain), art that intersected with popular media (including Pop art and the beginnings of video art), art based on investigation of the expressive uses of new technology (including Experiments in Art and Technology), art criticizing and/or questioning society (including the beginnings of feminist art, public mural art, happenings, Ed Kienholtz), and art that attempted to point to universal values (among others, Yves Klein, land art). Assigned readings will introduce the ways in which artists, critics, and theorists have viewed the period from within the decade to more recent writings. Students will participate in testing some computer-based resources in development. There will be two hour exams, a final exam, and a term project/paper. Cost:2 WL:2 (Kirkpatrick)
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393. Junior Proseminar. Concentration in history of art. (3). (Excl).
Section 001 Russian Avant-Garde.
The Junior Proseminar is being offered jointly with History of Art 394.006, a seminar on the Russian Avant-Garde (please see course description, below). Students will be required to attend all History of Art 394.006 seminars and to complete the required weekly readings. In addition, by means of supplementary readings, students will be guided in a research project of their own devising relating to the Russian Avant-Garde. Through timely completion of a research proposal, a bibliography, a rough draft and a final paper, students will master the skills and methods that are required in order to write a 15-20 page research paper. The proseminar will introduce students to the kinds of materials essential to the production of original art-historical research: primary sources, secondary (art-historical) literature, and theoretical and methodological texts. WL:1 (Gough)
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394. Special Topics. (3). (Excl). May be elected for credit more than once.
Section 001 MIMI-VUE.
Students in this course will participate in MIMI-VUE (Michigan Millennium Values of/for a University Education), a three-year collaborative project that is teaming undergraduate researchers in partnership with many elements of the university community to create a portrait of this institution and the values it will carry into the 21st century. Course work will involve required reading on the history of the university, participation in group discussion and planning sessions, and working in one or more of the research activities of the project (team-interviews with current and former members of the University community concerning their experiences at Michigan, researching MIMI-VUE themes at the Bentley Historical Library, and helping plan the "Millennial Web Days," which will electronically unite the U of M community around the world on December 31, 1999 and January 1, 2000). Initial class sessions will discuss the readings and prepare students for each activity. Thereafter, students will work individually or in teams. Grades will be based on quality of group participation and project work. Cost:1 WL:4 (Kirkpatrick)

Section 003 Art and Geometry: Circumscribing Patterns in Islamic Art. Within the Islamic world from Arabia to Spain and Indonesia, beginning in the year 1 hijri (622 C.E.) to the present, pattern-making has served a primary function in the organization of two- and three-dimensional space. The role of geometry in pattern-making is critical to an understanding of patterns as a form of spiritual and aesthetic expression. This course will explore aspects of geometry (in particular, properties of the circle) and the role of symmetry, asymmetry, and symmetry-breaking in Islamic arts and architecture. Students will be introduced to the foundations of Islam (Qur'an; Muhammad as Prophet), as well as to a basic understanding of symmetry as a tool for analysis and design. Attention will be paid to social aspects of pilgrimage and mosque architecture, as well as to aesthetic concerns of calligraphy and arabesque. Major monuments, illustrated through slides, include the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, the Alhambra, and the Taj Mahal. Class readings and discussion will focus on patterns in ceramics, stucco, metal, wood, and textiles, exploring architectural ornamentation and objects. Critical distinctions will be made between perception, analysis, and construction of patterns in an attempt to understand meanings of pattern-making for the maker. Students will engage in pattern-making activities, as well as visit local museum collections. A midterm exam and a final project are required. (Bier)

Section 004 Archaeological Museum Practices. In this course students will explore the manifold missions of archaeological museums through assigned readings, discussions with museum professionals, hands-on experience, and written assignments. The Kelsey Museum of Archaeology will provide a home base for the course, and Kelsey Museum activities will provide many of our case studies of exhibitions, research on the collections within the museum and in the field, conservation and storage, public outreach and ethics. Cost:1 (Thomas)

Section 005 African Religious Iconography. The art of Africa is known for its richly diverse visual vocabulary. Images of gods, ancestors and other spirit beings, and magical charms abound. While frequently the distribution of some of these forms may appear to be geographically circumscribed, they also reflect common themes and contextual associations. Research has determined that African religious philosophy both prescribes and informs the meanings and uses of many art works. The course aims at identifying and exploring some recurring themes in African iconography. It analyses visual forms used in religious worship, dwelling mainly on interpretation of imagery and context. It considers the specific social and political conditions under which images were produced and used to shed light on their total significance. Because images sometimes have multiple associations, and because meaning and interpretation can change over time and space, the course's approach will be both cross-cultural and historical. There are no prerequisites even though it would help if undergraduate participants have had one of the following courses: History of Art 108, 360, or 404. Interested graduate students may take History of Art 394 as an Independent Study. Participants will be required to do weekly intensive readings contained in a course pack (which will be available at Michigan Document Service on Church Street, off South University) and John Mbiti's Introduction to African Religion. Both reading materials are important. Students are required to attend all lectures and failure to do so can affect performance in the class. In addition to two in-class written examinations (midterm and final), each student will be required to write a 12-15 page paper. Those opting for Independent Study will produce a 20-25 page paper. Cost:2 WL:4 (Quarcoopome)

Section 006 Russian Avant-Garde. The Russian Revolution of October 1917 is one of the most important historical events in the 20th-century but only since the end of the Cold War have we been able to gain a fuller picture of the extraordinary artistic developments that have taken place in Russia during this century. This course will examine Russian avant-garde art both before and after the revolution (Neo-Primitivism, Cubo-futurism, Suprematism, the Jewish Renaissance, Unovis, Obmokhu, Constructivism, Productivism, Photographic Factography and Socialist Realism) so as to debate the controversial question of the relationship between avant-garde art and radical politics. The artists Malevich, Tatlin, Rodchenko, Stepanova and El Lisitskii, and the filmmakers Vertov and Eisenstein, are among the chief characters in this seminar. Media-wise our focus will be broad: we will consider not only painting, sculpture, photography and graphic design, but also film, opera, performance art, and exhibition design. The class will be part-lecture, part-seminar. Course requirements: weekly readings, two papers, and a short class presentation. Cost:2 WL:1 (Gough)
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Open to Juniors, Seniors, and Graduate Students. Sophomores by special permission.

405. Artists and Patrons. Hist. of Art 101. (3). (HU). May be elected for credit more than once with permission of chair.
Section 001 China in Comparative Perspective.
This course is designed to help students see a work of art in the context of human issues such as debates over the distribution of wealth, social privileges, or personal autonomy. In order to do this, the course trains students to investigate why a particular artifact looks the way it does: who made it? who acquired it? where was it displayed and for what purpose? who decided what was acceptable and who, if anyone, challenged established styles of production? Specific topics include: royal patronage; monastic patronage; the evolution of an open art market; the impact of art collecting and criticism on artistic style; competition between the court and alternative markets; the evolution of an art "world"; the use of painting as a site for social and political debate. In short, the course provides training in the use of art for the study of social history. While the focus of class discussion will be the varied history of art production in China, numerous readings in European art history will provide a comparative perspective. No previous knowledge of Chinese history is necessary. There will be a midterm quiz and a final paper. In addition, students will periodically type short responses to study questions supplied for assigned readings. There is no textbook. Readings will be placed on reserve and/or provided in course packs. (Powers)
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431/Class. Arch. 431. Principal Greek Archaeological Sites. A course in archaeology. (3). (Excl).
See Classical Archaeology 431.
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448. Medieval Manuscript Illumination. Hist. of Art 101. (3). (HU).
This course offers an introduction to an art form highly developed in the Middle Ages: the richly illuminated hand-written book. Beginning with the invention of the codex in late antiquity and ending with the advent of the printed book in the early modern era, the course will treat significant moments in the history of the manuscript. Masterworks ranging from the Lindisfarne Gospels to the Tres Riches Heures will be studied as products of particular historical circumstances. Topics include the process of making a manuscript, the changing status of scribes and illuminators, the evolving roles of patrons, types of books and their functions, and forms of decoration. Visits to the Rare Book Room will be arranged to look at original manuscripts and facsimiles. There will be a midterm and final, a shorter and a longer paper or project. (Sears)
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453. Venetian Painting. Hist. of Art 102. (3). (Excl).
Following introductory remarks on the history of Venice and on the character of that extraordinary city, renowned as La Serenissima and the Queen of the Adriatic, the course will survey North Italian and especially Venetian painting from the early 14th C. to the late 16th C. that is, as it evolves from the first stirrings of a personal idiom, through the florid International Style to Early Renaissance realism and High Renaissance idealism, and finally to a Counter-Renaissance statement of great emotional fervor. The period 1450-1600, including such masters as Mantegna, Carpaccio, Giovanni Bellini, Giorgione, Titian, Tintoretto, and Veronese, will be featured. At once attempting to define the special qualities of the Venetian tradition, with its painterly and poetic sensitivities, and the creative uniqueness of some of its leading exponents, the lectures will approach the works of art both with respect to the sociocultural contexts in which they were born and to their relevance to us today. Students will be evaluated by way of midterm and final examinations of essay type. Cost:1 WL:4 (Bissell)
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493. Art of India. Hist. of Art 103. (3). (Excl). Laboratory fee ($15) required.
This course is designed for students with little knowledge of Indian art. It deals with architecture, sculpture, and painting, most of the monuments being closely connected with the Hindu and Buddhist religions and (to a lesser degree) the Islamic faith. A good portion of the required reading is intended to provide a background in the mythology and history of these religions; books such as H. Zimmer's Myths and Symbols in Indian Art, Wendy O. Flaherty's Hindu Myths, William Archer's The Loves of Krishna, and W. Spink's Krishna Mandala will be used. The major course requirements are a short paper, a midterm, and a final paper in lieu of a final exam. By and large the course is a lecture course, and the coverage chronological, although more attention will be given to certain topics than to others, so that certain parts of India's long tradition can be understood in some depth. History of Art 103, 151, 454 or Asian Studies 111 all would provide a useful background for this course, although they are not essential to it. (Spink)
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562. Baroque Sculpture in Italy and Spain. Hist. of Art 102. (3). (Excl).
Beginning with introductory lectures on 16th-century sculptural traditions and on the stirrings of a new way of seeing and working, the course will pass to an intensive investigation of the art of Gianlorenzo Bernini. Bernini's sculpture will be studied both for what it reveals of the master's artistic genius and of the changing socio-political/religious climate in Papal Rome. The influence of Bernini's vision and the alternative to the Berninian manner that of Baroque Classicism will then be discussed. This will be followed by a unit on the extraordinary sculpture of 17th-century Spain. The course will end with suggestions as to the constants that is, the peculiarly Baroque features - within so much astonishing diversity. Students will be evaluated by way of midterm and final examinations of essay type. Cost:1 WL:4 (Bissell)
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591. Japanese Architecture. Hist. of Art 103 or 495. (3). (Excl).
This course will examine Japanese architecture and gardens in the context of political and social change from prehistoric pit-dwellings to the mid-19th century. Topics will include the design of early court capitals as a concrete manifestation of the emergence of the Imperial institution, the impact of the tea aesthetic and classical court revival on elite residential architecture and gardens of the 17th century, and ways in which farmhouse designs were adapted to accommodate various climates and different economic and social functions. (Reynolds)
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