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Art History

The study and critical reading of works of art in their historical and cultural contexts through the art history component of the visual arts curriculum provides students with a fundamental understanding of the histories that have shaped art making and visual production. This fundamental understanding provides an essential basis for professional art practice in an increasingly interdependent and complex modern world saturated with images and experiences that depend on one another for their meanings.

Courses in the Art History Program

  • VIAR 120 - Appreciation of the Visual Arts 3 Credit(s).
  • VIAR 121 - Survey of the Visual Arts I 3 Credit(s).
  • VIAR 122 - Survey of the Arts II 3 Credit(s).
  • VIAR 220 - Introduction to Modern Art 3 Credit(s).
  • VIAR 321 - Studies in Art History 3 Credit(s).
  • VIAR 323 - Art Since 1945 3 Credit(s).
  • VIAR 422 - Studies in Art History 3 Credit(s).

Beginning with an overview of European art and an introduction to the traditional arts of non-European cultures, and advancing through increasing focus on specific cultural periods and themes, students learn to look at visual objects, identify the characteristics of art historical periods, and understand how cultural conventions have converged to shape world art from prehistory to the contemporary. Critical seeing, thinking, reading, and writing skills developed through the art history curriculum reinforce the studio art curriculum by providing the tools necessary for an informed reading of images and their culturally encoded meanings, and a critical, historical understanding in which to situate
their identities as artists engaged in professional studio art practice.

Art History courses are conducted in SMART classrooms and lecture halls, incorporate extensive image, DVD, and video collections, and provide access to extensive online image and journal databases through Edith Garland Dupre Library for research and study.