Spring 2014 Undergraduate Courses

Updated on January 23, 2014.


AHIS BC1002 Introduction to Art History II
A. Higonnet
M/W 2:40-3:55, 304 Barnard Hall
Introduction to the art of the past with an emphasis on the variety of perspectives from which it may be studied. Artworks from different period cultures will be selected for discussion in depth. Members of art history faculty and other invited speakers lecture in their fields of specialization. Renaissance to Modern art will be covered. Discussion Section Required.

AHIS BC3642 North American Art and Culture
E. Hutchinson
T/R 10:10-11:25, , 325 Milbank Hall
An examination of North American painting, sculpture, photography, graphic art and decorative arts from the Colonial Period until World War I. Artists discussed will include Benjamin West, John Singleton Copley, Thomas Cole, Lilly Martin Spencer, Harriet Powers, Rafael Aragon, Robert Duncanson, Frederick Church, Winslow Homer, Thomas Eakins, James MacNeill Whistler, Mary Cassatt, Thomas Moran, Henry Ossawa Tanner and Eadweard Muybridge.

AHIS BC3655 Discourse of Public Art and Space
R. Deutsche
T/R 1:10-2:25, 504 Milbank Hall
Examination of the meaning of the term "public space" in contemporary debates in art, architecture, and urban discourse and the place of these debates within broader controversies over the meaning of democracy. Readings include Theodor Adorno, Vito Acconci, Michel de Certeau, Douglas Crimp, Thomas Crow, Jurgen Habermas, David Harvey, Fredric Jameson, Miwon Kwon, Henri Lefebvre, Bruce Robbins, Michael Sorkin, Mark Wigley, and Krzysztof Wodiczko.

AHIS BC3673 History of Photography
A. Alberro
T/R 4:10-5:25, 304 Barnard Hall
Focuses on the intersection of photography with traditional artistic practices in the 19th century, on the mass cultural functions of photography in propaganda and advertising from the 1920s onwards, and on the emergence of photography as the central medium in the production of postwar avant-garde art practices.

AHIS BC3687 Modern Japanese Art
J. Reynolds
M/W 10:10-11:25, 504 Diana Center
This class will explore Japanese painting, prints, photography and performance art from the mid-19th century to the present. We will consider artists responses to rapid modernization, debates over cultural identity, and the ever-changing role of tradition in modern art practice. We will also discuss the impact of natural disaster and war on the arts, and the role of art in mediating social conflict. There are no prerequisites, but the survey of Japanese art history and classes in modern Japanese studies would provide useful background.

AHIS V3250 Roman Art and Architecture
F. deAngelis
M/W 2:40-3:55, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
The architecture, sculpture, and painting of ancient Rome from the 2nd century B.C. to the end of the Empire in the West.Discussion Section Required.

AHIS V3464 Later Italian Art
M. Cole
M/W 1:10-2:25, 501 Schermerhorn Hall
This course offers an overview of painting, sculpture, and architecture in Italy from about 1475 to about 1600. It concentrates on artists in four geographical areas and periods: (1) Florence in the late-15th and early-16th centuries (Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo); (2) Rome from 1502 to about 1534 (Bramante, Michelangelo, Raphael); (3) Florence from 1520 to 1565 (Andrea del Sarto, Pontormo, Bronzino, Cellini); and (4) Venice from about 1500 to 1588 (Bellini, Giorgione, Titian, Veronese, Tintoretto, Jacopo Sansovino).

AHIS V3662 18th-Century European Art
F. Baumgartner
M/W 1:10-2:25, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
In the 18th century in Europe, human reason and human sensibility became the new dominant modes of apprehension of the world. This course examines how artists responded to this rise of subjectivity, in the context of the transformation of the 18th-century cultural, social and economic landscape. Topics of discussion will include: the birth of art criticism; the development of the art market; the phenomenon of "exoticisms;" domesticity and the cult of sensibility; the ascension of women artists and patrons; traveling artists and amateurs; and the new classicism.

AHIS W3110 The Athenian Acropolis in the 5th & 6th Centuries BCE
I. Mylonopoulos
M/W 11:40-12:55, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
The course places the architecture and the sculptural decoration of the Parthenon in the centre of the scheduled class sessions. The course also aims at a contextualisation of the Parthenon within the broader architectural, artistic, and topographical context of the Athenian Acropolis during the sixth and fifth centuries BCE. The chosen chronological frame focuses on the period of the most intensive activity on the Acropolis. Two class sessions will, nevertheless, give a brief overview of the Acropolis after the end of the Peloponnesian war and concentrate on the transformation of the Acropolis into "Greece's museum of the past", an Arcadian topos of human imagination.

AHIS W3208 Arts of Africa
Z. Strother
M/W 4:10-5:25, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
Introduction to the arts of Africa, including masquerading, figural sculpture, reliquaries, power objects, textiles, painting, photography, and architecture. The course will establish a historical framework for study, but will also address how various African societies have responded to the process of modernity and globalization.

AHIS W3230 Medieval Architecture
S. Murray
T/R 2:40-3:55, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
Medieval Architecture provides an opportunity to study buildings belonging to the one-thousand year period from the fourth century to the Late Middle Ages. We will focus particularly upon issues of representation—how buildings have been described in words and depicted in images, exploring the stories created to link buildings together into a continuous narrative.

AHIS W3606 Visual Arts in Imperial Spain 1470-1600
D. Bodart
T/R 4:10-5:25, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
The course will survey Renaissance art in Hapsburg Spain, considered in the wide geographical context of the extended and dispersed dominions of the different crowns of the Spanish monarchy, which connected the Iberian Peninsula with Italy, Flanders and the New World. It will concern visual art in its various media, mainly painting, sculpture and architecture, but also tapestries, prints, armor, goldsmithery and ephemeral decoration, among others. Works of the main artists of the period will be introduced and analyzed, giving attention to the historical and cultural context of their production and reception. The course will particularly focus on the movement of artists, works and models within the Spanish Hapsburg territories, in order to understand to what extent visual arts contributed to shaping the political identity of this culturally composite empire.

AHIS W3650 Twentieth Century Art
R. Krauss
T/R 2:40-3:55, 501 Schermerhorn Hall
The course will examine a variety of figures, movements, and practices within the entire range of 20th-century art-from Expressionism to Abstract Expressionism, Constructivism to Pop Art, Surrealism to Minimalism, and beyond-situating them within the social, political, economic, and historical contexts in which they arose. The history of these artistic developments will be traced through the development and mutual interaction of two predominant strains of artistic culture: the modernist and the avant-garde, examining in particular their confrontation with and development of the particular vicissitudes of the century's ongoing modernization. Discussion section complement class lectures. Course is a prerequisite for certain upper-level art history courses. Discussion Section Required.

AHIS W4086 Aztec Art and Architecture
M. O'Neil
M/W 2:40-3:55, 903 Altschul Hall
Open to graduate and undergraduate students. This course focuses on the visual and material culture of the Aztec (Mexica) Empire, from the fourteenth to sixteenth centuries CE. We will explore the Mexica civilization through their books, objects, buildings, and festivals, investigating topics such as communication, performance, religion and ritual, sacred landscapes, histories and origin stories, politics and empire, and other facets of society. In addition, we will consider interactions of
Mexica and Europeans in New Spain in the sixteenth century and the transformations in arts and culture as a result of their interchange.

AHIS W4443 Baroque and Rococo Architecture 1600-1750
C. Yerkes
T/R 11:40-12:55, 614 Schermerhorn Hall
This course surveys the history of European architecture from 1600 to 1750. In addition to the analysis of key buildings, particular attention is given to developments in architectural theory, landscape design, and urban planning. Topics include the publication and circulation of architectural books, the debates between the Ancients and Moderns, the impact of court culture on spatial planning and interior design, and the rise of capital cities.

AHIS G4385 History and Theory of Renaissance Architecture
F. Benelli
W 2:10-4, 832 Schermerhorn Hall
A survey of Renaissance Architecture in Italy through its buildings and its theory, from Brunelleschi to Palladio and the influence to other European country.

AHIS G4861 Cinema and Paintings
Interested undergraduates, please email cn2303 at columbia dot edu
K. Minturn
T 10:10-12, 934 Schermerhorn Hall
Cinema and Paintings will be dedicated to an interdisciplinary investigation of cinema's relationship to modern painting (1895-1995). Through a series of film screenings and slide lectures, students will be given the opportunity to analyze specific "points of intersection" between cinema and painting—moments in their parallel histories when cinema and painting have shared certain aesthetic, formalistic, thematic, ideological, or political aspirations. Concomitantly, this course will introduce students to the existing literature on this subject (the work of Bazin, Panofsky, Arnheim, Aumont, Vernet, Bonitzer, Païni, et. al.) and encourage them to formulate their own methodological approach to the study of cinema's relationship to painting.

AHUM V3340 Arts of China, Japan and Korea
M. McKelway
T/R 10:10-11:25, 612 Schermerhorn Hall
Introduces distinctive aesthetic traditions of China, Japan, and Korea—their similarities and differences—through an examination of the visual significance of selected works of painting, sculpture, architecture, and other arts in relation to the history, culture, and religions of East Asia. Discussion section required.

Seminars and Colloquium

AHIS BC3031 Imagery and Form in the Arts
J. Snitzer
M 2:10-4, 501 Diana Center
Operation of imagery and form in dance, music, theater, visual arts and writing; students are expected to do original work in one of these arts. Concepts in contemporary art will be explored.

AHIS BC3946 Japanese Photography
J. Reynolds
T 2:10-4, 501 Diana Center
This course will examine the history of Japanese photography from the middle of the 19th century to the present. The seminar will be organized both chronologically and thematically. Throughout its history, photography has been an especially powerful medium for addressing the most challenging issues facing Japanese society. Among the topics under discussion will be: tourist photography and the representation of women within that genre in the late 19th century, photography as propaganda, the construction of Japanese cultural identity through the representation of "tradition" in photography, and the interest in marginalized urban subcultures in the photography of the 1960s and 1970s. Although the course will be focused on Japan, the class will read from the literature on photography elsewhere in order to situate Japanese work within a broader context.

AHIS BC3968 Art Criticism II
N. Guagnini
T 11-12:50, 501/2 Diana
Contemporary art and its criticism written by artists ( rather than by art historians or journalistic reviewers). Texts by Victor Burgin, Judith Barry, Andrea Fraser, Coco Fusco, John Kelsey, Jutta Koether, Yvone Rainer, Juan Downey, Maria Eichorn, Jeff Wall, Mike Kelley, Falkie Pisano, and Melanie Gilligan. We will consider theoretical and practical implications of each artist's oeuvre. Also, considers the art and writing of each artist together.

AHIS W3895 Major's Colloquium: Introduction to the Literature and Methods of Art History
Z. Bahrani
W 4:10-6, 934 Schermerhorn Hall
Prerequisites: the department's permission. Students must sign-up in 826 Schermerhorn. Introduction to different methodological approaches to the study of art and visual culture. Majors are encouraged to take the colloquium during their junior year.

AHIS W3961 Majors Colloquium: Methods of Architectural History
B. Bergdoll
M 2:10-4, 934 Schermerhorn Hall
This course will combine practical training in visual analysis and architectural historical research—through a single writing assignment in three stages -- with a close reading of key works of architectural historians since the emergence of the discipline as a free-standing field of inquiry in the late 19th century. In addition to course meetings occasional site visits will be arranged in the city and further a field.

AHIS W3812 Study of Gothic Architecture
Currently not listed on the Directory of Classes; in process
S. Murray
R 10:10-12, 930 Schermerhorn Hall
The seminar has three parts: first, after a brief exploration of issues of mapping and plotting Gothic, we will follow a sequence of readings in some of the giants of older historiography, second, we will study the sea change in the field that began in the 1980s and the work of some of the most dynamic scholars in the subsequent period, and third, students will present their research papers.

AHIS W3879 Medieval Jerusalem: The Making of the Holy (travel seminar)
Currently not listed on the Directory of Classes; in process
A. Shalem
W 11-12:50, 934 Schermerhorn Hall
The course will examine Jerusalem's changing architectural programme over circa thousand years, as well as its representation in images and texts from Jewish, Christian and Muslim sources. The main focus is the Haram al-Sharif, the temple mount in Jerusalem as well as other spaces in the old city of Jerusalem and its vicinity, in which further sacred spaces were built and designed for pilgrims. Aspects of different rituals and even oral traditions will be brought into discussion to illustrate the varied methods and politics of the space and the continuous contestations over Jerusalem's sacredness till the present day. The course is designed as a preparatory course for an excursion to Jerusalem in March 2014. Students' presentations will be held both in situ, in from of the monuments of Jerusalem, as well as in the class.

AHIS W3971 Photographer, Ethnographer
Z. Strother
R 2:10-4, 934 Schermerhorn Hall
This seminar explores the "creative uses of reality." Modern and contemporary artists have become increasingly concerned to represent culture—their own but especially other people's—through the media of film and photography. Are the resulting works products of art or science? Why is it so hard to tell? Has the opening of the archives through the internet and through globalization changed anything? Should artists who take on the role of cultural mediator be held to a code of ethics similar to the "human subject" protocols imposed on anthropologists? In the seminar, we will examine influential models, such as Nanook of the North and the work of Jean Rouch, in relation to developing discourses on documentary photography, anthropology, primitivism, and contemporary art. The course will also take advantage of groundbreaking scholarship on postcolonial photographic practice in India and Africa that challenges assumptions that photography is somehow an inherently "Western" medium. The seminar has been timed to take advantage of the campus visits of contemporary artists from South Africa and Brazil whose work directly confronts the politics of representation. Note: this course does not require an application.

AHIS C3997 Senior Thesis Seminar
C. Hunter
M 6:10-8, 934 Schermerhorn Hall
Required for all thesis writers.