Art Department

Professors: Nicholas Adams, Eve D’Ambra (Chair), Frances D. Fergussonab, Susan D. Kuretsky, Karen Lucic, Brian Lukacher, Molly Nesbitb, Harry RosemanaAssociate Professors: Peter Charlap, Lisa Collins, Jacqueline Marie Musacchio, Andrew Watskya;Assistant Professor: Laura Newman;Lecturer: James Mundy (and Director of the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center); Adjunct Assistant Professors: Anne Bertrand-Dewsnap, Richard Bosman, Isolde Brielmaier, Gina Ruggeri, Jessica Winston; Adjunct Instructor: Judith Linn.

Requirements for Concentration in Art History: The major consists of a minimum of 12 units. 10 units, including Art 105-106, must be in graded art history courses taken at Vassar. 2 units may be taken in studio art and/or architectural design, or may be transferred from work completed outside of Vassar, such as courses taken Junior Year Abroad.

Distribution: 6 units must be divided equally between groups A, B, and C. 
1 unit in group D (African or Asian) may be substituted for a unit from any of the other three groups and 1 unit taken JYA may also be applied to meet this distribution requirement. 3 units must be in 300-level art history courses: two seminars in different art historical groups and 301 (senior project). 300-level seminars are to be selected on the basis of courses in the same area already taken on the 200-level. Majors are also urged to take a 300-level seminar before 301.

  1. Ancient
    Medieval
  2. Renaissance
    Seventeenth Century
  3. Nineteenth Century
    Twentieth Century
    American
    African American
  4. Asian
    African

Departmental and interdisciplinary courses that do not conform to the groupings listed above may be applied to the distribution requirements upon approval of the student’s major adviser.

Ungraded/NRO work may not be used to satisfy the requirements for the art history concentration.

Senior Year Requirements: Art 301 and 1 additional unit at the 300-level. Majors concentrating in art history are required to write a senior paper, based upon independent research and supervised by a member of the department. Petitions for exemption from this requirement, granted only in special circumstances, must be submitted to the chair in writing by the first day of classes in the A semester.

Recommendations: The selection and sequence of courses for the major should be planned closely with the major adviser. Students are advised to take courses in the history of painting, sculpture, and architecture, and are strongly encouraged to take at least one studio course. Students considering graduate study in art history are advised to take courses in foreign languages: German, and the Romance, Classical, or Asian languages, depending on areas of interest. Students with special interest in architectural design and/or city planning should meet with the departmental adviser to discuss this concentration.

The art department offers a correlate sequence in art history to allow students to develop an area of significant interest outside their major field of concentration. In consultation with a departmental adviser, the student will select a body of courses encompassing introductory through advanced study and covering more than one historical period.

The Correlate Sequence in Art History: 6 graded units including Art 105-106, three 200-level courses in at least two art historical period groups, and one 300-level course.

Advisers: the art history faculty.

Requirements for Concentration in Studio Art: 13 units; 4 units must be in graded art history courses, consisting of Art 105-106 and two 200-level courses in different groups (A, B, C, or D) listed above; 9 studio units, 7 of which must be graded units taken at Vassar, including Art 102-103; 4 units in 200-level studio courses, of which 2 must be Art 204-205 and 2 must be in sequential courses in painting, drawing, or printmaking; 3 units in 300-level studio courses including Art 301. By special permission up to 2 units of 298 and 399 work can be included in the major.

Senior Year Requirements: Art 301 and 1 additional unit at the 300-level.

Studio Art: Entrance into the studio concentration is determined by evaluation of the student’s class work and by a review of the student’s portfolio by the studio faculty. The portfolio may be submitted for evaluation at any time, ordinarily between the spring of the sophomore year and the spring of the junior year. Students taking studio courses are charged a fee to cover the cost of some materials, and they may be responsible for the purchase of additional materials. Studio majors are required to attend and participate in the majors’ critiques.

Students who wish to concentrate in studio art are advised to take Art 102-103 in their freshman year and at least one additional studio course in the sophomore year in order to have a portfolio of work to be evaluated for admission to the studio art concentration. Those students interested in the studio concentration should consult the studio faculty no later than the end of the sophomore year. NRO work may not be used to satisfy the requirements for the studio concentration.

Advisers: the studio art faculty.

Art History

I. Introductory

105a-106b. Introduction to the History of Art (1)

An historical and analytical introduction to architecture, sculpture, and painting. The department.

Open to all classes. Enrollment limited by class.

Three 50-minute periods and one conference hour.

120a. Viewing and Reading Race in Today’s Visual Culture (1)

This course draws on individual case studies to explore ideas and representations of race, specifically as they relate to people of African descent in today’s global visual culture. Focusing on the twenty-first century, we consider ways of viewing and “reading” race in contemporary visual art, film, video, mass media, fashion, advertising and music. Ms. Brielmaier.

Open to freshmen. Limited enrollment. Satisfies the Freshman Writing Seminar requirement.

Two 75-minute periods.

180b. The Architecture of Home (1)

The architectural form of the private house responds quickly to changes in society. At one moment it serves primarily as a form of representation, offering little space for private activity; at other times, it serves primarily as a refuge for the nuclear family offering little public role. We examine the changes in the role of the home over time with special emphasis on present and future visions of domestic life. Among the subjects to be covered are the kitchenless house, the artist (and architect’s house), the house as gendered space, the palace as home, houses for the homeless, the contemporary wired house (or unprivate house). Films, novels, and poetry, as well as site visits, help us understand the values being represented in the houses we study. Mr. Adams.

Open to freshmen. Limited enrollment. Satisfies the Freshman Writing Seminar requirement.

Two 75-minute periods.

[190a. Images and Ideas: Exploring the Sense of Sight] (1)

An exploration of how various notions of seeing (as perception, as recognition, as revelation) have been treated in the visual arts and in literature. Class meetings take place in the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center so that students may make regular use of Vassar’s extensive art collection. Ms. Kuretsky.

Open to freshmen. Limited enrollment.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

II. Intermediate

[211b. Roman Art and Architecture] (1)

(Same as Classics 211) Sculpture, painting, and architecture in the Roman Republic and Empire. Topics include: the appeal of Greek styles, the spread of artistic and architectural forms throughout the vast empire and its provinces, the role of art as political propaganda for state and as status symbols for private patrons. Ms. D’Ambra.

Prerequisite: Art 105‑106 or Classics 218 or 219, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

220a. Romanesque and Gothic Architecture (1)

Topic and instructor to be announced.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or Medieval Studies, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

221b. The Sacred Arts of the Middle Ages (1)

Topic and instructor to be announced.

Prerequisites: Art 105, or Medieval Studies, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

230a. Northern Renaissance Painting (1)

Early Netherlandish and German painting and printmaking from Campin and van Eyck to Bruegel, Holbein, and Dürer. The course examines northern European attitudes toward nature, devotional art and portraiture that developed in the early fifteenth century and their evolution up to and through the Protestant Reformation of the sixteenth century. Ms. Kuretsky.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

231b. Dutch and Flemish Painting in the Seventeenth Century (1)

An exploration of the new forms of secular and religious art that developed during the so‑called Golden Age of the Netherlands in the works of Rubens, Rembrandt, Vermeer and their contemporaries. The course examines the impact of differing religions on Flanders and the Dutch Republic, while exploring how political, economic and scientific factors encouraged the formation of seventeenth century Netherlandish art. Ms. Kuretsky.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106.

Two 75‑minute periods.

235a. Renaissance Painting, Sculpture, and Decorative Arts in Italy (1)

This course surveys a selection of the arts in Renaissance Italy, focusing primarily on Tuscany and central Italy from circa 1300 to circa 1500. This period witnessed the rise of the mendicant orders, the devastation of the Black Death, the growth of civic and private patronage, and, finally, the exile of the Medici family, all of which had a profound impact on the visual arts. The work of major artists and workshops is examined and contextualized within their political, social, and economic settings by readings and discussions of contemporary texts and recent scholarship. Ms. Musacchio.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

236b. Sixteenth-Century Painting, Sculpture, and Decorative Arts in Italy (1)

This course examines High Renaissance and Mannerist art in Italy. We focus in particular on Papal Rome, Ducal Florence, and Republican Venice, and the work of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian, and their followers in relation to the social and cultural currents of the time. Issues such as private patronage, female artists, contemporary sexuality, and the interconnections between monumental and domestic art are examined in light of recent scholarship in the field. Ms. Musacchio.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

242a. Seventeenth-Century Painting and Sculpture in Italy and France (1)

An examination of the dominant trends and figures of the Italian and French baroque period. This course explores the works of major masters including Caravaggio, Bernini, Poussin, and La Tour, as well as such issues as the development of illusionistic ceiling decoration, the theoretical basis of baroque art, the relationship of art to the scientific revolution, and art’s subservience to the church and the royal court. Ms. Winston.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

243b. Art and Ideas of the Golden Age in Spain (1)

This class addresses painting and sculpture in Spain during the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. We explore the art of major figures, such as El Greco, Diego Velazquez and Francisco de Zurbarán, as well as those who are less familiar. Artists and ideas are considered in their cultural context: monastic, religious, popular, devotional, court and bourgeois. In addition, we examine the use of art to expand the empire, both politically and religiously, in the New World. Ms. Winston.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

250a. Change and Diversity in American Art, from the Beginnings to 1865 (1)

This course examines the arts of the prehistoric, colonial, early republic, and antebellum periods. Important figures include painters such as Copley, West, Mount, Cole, and Church, and architects such as Jefferson, Bulfinch, Latrobe, Davis, and Downing. In addition, we consider the diverse and often overlooked contributions of women, Native Americans, African Americans, and folk artists. Ms. Lucic.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

251b. The Challenge of Modernity: American Art 1865-1945 (1)

Painting, sculpture, photography, architecture, and design during America’s -“coming-of-age’’ as a cultural, economic, and political power. The course examines the work of such figures as Richardson, Sullivan, Wright, Homer, Eakins, Cassatt, Sargent, Whistler, O’Keeffe, Hopper, Stieglitz, Strand, and the artists of the Harlem Renaissance. Ms. Lucic.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

253b. The Arts of Central, Eastern, and Southern Africa (1)

(Same as Africana Studies 253b) This course explores the ways in which sculpture, textiles, painting, drawing, and photography function both historically and currently in relationship to particular themes such as religion, trade and diaspora (both Atlantic and Indian Ocean), political power and healing. We also consider the visual arts in relationship to ideas of improvisation, identity and self-representation, and forms of resistance. Ms. Brielmaier.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or one 200-level course in Africana Studies, or by permission of the instructor.

254a The Arts of Western and Northern Africa (1)

(Same as Africana Studies 254a) This course is organized thematically and examines the ways in which sculpture, architecture, painting, and photography function both historically and currently in relationship to broader cultural issues. Within this context, this course explores performance and masquerade in relationship to gender, social, and political power. We also consider the connections between the visual arts and cosmology, Islam, identity, ideas of diaspora, colonialism and post-colonialism, as well as the representation of the “Self”, and the “Other”. Ms. Brielmaier.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or one 200-level course in Africana Studies, or by permission of the instructor.

257b. The Arts of China (1)

A survey of the major developments in Chinese art from the Neolithic period to the present, including archaeological discoveries, bronzes, sculpture, ceramics, architecture, calligraphy, and painting. The course explores factors behind the making of works of art, including social, political and religious meanings, while examining the historical contexts for and aesthetic principles of the arts of China. Ms. Giuffrida.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

[258a. The Arts of Japan] (1)

A historical survey of the major developments in Japanese art from prehistoric times through the present, including painting, sculpture, decorative arts, architecture, and garden design. Mr. Watsky.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

[259b. Warriors, Deities and Tea Masters: Japanese Art of the Momoyama Period (1568‑1615)] (1)

A survey of the arts during this brief yet pivotal period, when artists and patrons in a newly redefined Japan explored several—often contrasting—aesthetic ideals. The course examines developments in a range of mediums, including painting, architecture, ceramics, and lacquer. Some of the themes treated are the tea ceremony, the first arrival of Europeans, the workshop in Japanese art, and genre. Mr. Watsky.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

262a. Art and Revolution in Europe, 1789-1848 (1)

A survey of major movements and figures in European art, 1789-1848, focusing on such issues as the contemporaneity of antiquity in revolutionary history painting, the eclipse of mythological and religious art by an art of social observation and political commentary, the romantic cult of genius, imagination, and creative self-definition, and the emergence of landscape painting in an industrializing culture. Mr. Lukacher.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

263b. Painters of Modern Life: Realism, Impressionism, Symbolism (1)

A survey of major movements and figures in European art, 1848-1900, examining the realist, impressionist, and symbolist challenges to the dominant art institutions, aesthetic assumptions, and social values of the period; also addressing how a critique of modernity and a sociology of aesthetics can be seen developing through these phases of artistic experimentation. Mr. Lukacher.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

[264a. The Avant-Gardes, 1889-1929] (1)

(Same as Media Studies 264a) The formation of the European avant-gardes is studied as part of the general modernization of everyday life. Various media are included: painting, sculpture, architecture, photography, the applied arts, and film. Ms. Nesbit.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

265b. Modern Art and the Mass Media, 1929-1968 (1)

(Same as Media Studies 265a) The history of modernist painting in Europe and America from 1930 to 1975, together with those contemporary developments in film, photography, and the mass media. Special attention is paid to the criticism, theory, and politics of the image. Instructor to be announced.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

[266b. African American Arts and Artifacts] (1)

(Same as Africana Studies 266) An introduction to the artistic and material production of African Americans in the U.S. from the colonial period to the present day. We examine multiple influences on (African, European, American, diasporic, etc.) and uses for black creative expression. Working with an expansive conception of art, we pay close attention to the work of formally and non-formally trained artists in relation to their social, cultural, aesthetic, and historical contexts. Ms. Collins.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

268a. The Times, 1968-now (1)

(Same as Media Studies 268) This course studies the visual arts of the last thirty years, in America and abroad, together with the often difficult discussion emerging around them. The traditional fine arts as well as the new media, performance, film and architecture are included. Ms. Nesbit.

Prerequisite: Art 264 or 265 or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

[270a. Renaissance Architecture] (1)

European architecture and city building from 1300-1500; focus on Italian architecture and Italian architects; encounters between Italian and other cultures throughout Europe and the Mediterranean. Mr. Adams.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or 170 or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

Not offered in 2007/08.

272b. Architecture after the Industrial Revolution (1)

Architecture was utterly changed by the industrial revolution of the eighteenth century. This course examines the changes in materials (iron and steel), building type (exhibition halls, train stations), and architectural practice (the rise of professional societies). The course terminates with the rise of modernism at the beginning of the twentieth century (Gropius, Le Corbusier), an architecture that fully embodied these industrial changes. Mr. Adams.

273a. Modern Architecture and Beyond (1)

European and American architecture and city building (1920 to the present); examination of the diffusion of modernism and its reinterpretation by corporate America and Soviet Russia. Discussion of subsequent critiques of modernism (postmodernism, deconstruction, new urbanism) and their limitations. Issues in contemporary architecture. Mr. Adams.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106, or 170, or by permission of instructor.

Two 75-minute periods.

290a or b. Field Work ( 1/2 or 1)

Projects undertaken in cooperation with approved galleries, archives, collections, or other agencies concerned with the visual arts, including architecture. The department.

May be taken either semester or in the summer.

Open by permission of a supervising instructor. Not included in the minimum requirements for the major.

Prerequisites: Art 105-106 and one 200-level course.

298a or b. Independent Work ( 1/2 or 1)

Open by permission of the instructor with the concurrence of the adviser in the field of concentration. Not included in the minimum for the major.

III. Advanced

Prerequisite for advanced courses: 3 units of 200-level work or the equivalent. By permission.

300a or b. Senior Paper Preparation ( 1/2)

Optional. Regular meetings with a faculty member to prepare an annotated bibliography and thesis statement for the senior paper. Course must be scheduled in the semester prior to the writing of the senior paper. Credit given only upon completion of the senior paper. Ungraded.

Prerequisite: permission of the Chair of the Art Department.

301a or b. Senior Project (1)

Supervised independent research culminating in a written paper.

310b. Seminar in Ancient Art (1)

(Same as Classics 310) Pompeii: Public and Private Life. A study of the urban development of a Roman town with public buildings and centers of entertainment that gave shape to political life and civic pride. The houses, villas, and gardens of private citizens demonstrate intense social competition, as well as peculiarly Roman attitudes toward privacy, domesticity, and nature. Ms. D’Ambra.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

320b. Seminar in Medieval Art (1)

Topic for 2007-08b: Chartres Cathedral. The cathedral of Chartres has long been viewed as the Gothic building par excellence, a position secured by the likes of Henry Adams, Otto von Simson, and the legendary guide Malcolm Miller. A focal point for medieval pilgrims and modern tourists alike, Chartres is also at the heart of the story of Gothic as traditionally told in the English language-the moment at which the structural, symbolic and aesthetic challenges of this new and daring architecture were finally resolved. Students are invited to reconsider Chartres not only as a construction of stone and glass but as one of words, to test the validity of its near-mythical status in light of recent scholarship. Mr.Tallon.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

331a. Seminar in Northern Art (1)

Johannes Vermeer of Delft. Recent research on Johannes Vermeer has produced a sharper and more nuanced understanding of how the artist worked and what meanings his paintings conveyed to viewers of his time. Through evaluating the wide range of scholarly approaches that have been applied to Vermeer, the seminar examines his interpretive and technical development as an artist, explores how he relates to and diverges from other major genre painters of the same period, and considers how his thematic choices reflect ways of thinking that developed in the Dutch Republic during the Age of Observation. Ms. Kuretsky.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

332b. Seminar in Italian Renaissance Art (1)

Michelangelo. This seminar examines the art and life of Michelangelo Buonarroti, the Italian Renaissance artist who lived from 1474 to 1564. Although he is best known as a sculptor and painter, Michelangelo was also an architect, a poet, a civil engineer, a teacher, and a diplomat. We look at his work within the context of the Renaissance cities of Florence and Rome, and investigate his artistic, religious, personal, political, and economic motivations. Ms. Musacchio.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

[354b. Seminar in African Art] (1)

(Same as Africana Studies 354) The Contemporary Arts of Africa. This seminar focuses on the content and form of contemporary visual production in Africa, considering the ways in which African artists across the continent have negotiated various themes. Exploring sculpture, painting, photography, video, and installation. Emphasis is placed on the changing meanings of art within African contexts. As a part of this process, the tension between the “tribal” or “traditional” and the “contemporary” or “(post) modern” is examined with respect to the ways that the advent of “national” culture as well as outside factors (colonialism, Christianity, Islam, European art education, and international tourism) have simultaneously presented the artist with new problems and new venues for visual presentation. We also consider issues concerning the representation of the “other” within African contexts as well as issues of “authenticity.” Ms. Brielmaier.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One two-hour period.

Not offered in 2007/08.

358b. Seminar in Asian Art (1)

Topic for 2007-08b: Chinese Art: Nineteenth Century to Now. From the last decades of imperial rule through the rise of Communism and ending with China’s current presence on the global stage, the seminar investigates the multiple realities that Chinese artists have constructed for themselves. By examining artworks in a variety of media including painting, sculpture, decorative arts, performance art, and installations, the seminar explores relationships between tradition and modernity, confluences between East and West, representations of cultural identity, the role of expatriate artists, and the impact of the international art market. Ms. Giuffrida.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

362a. Seminar in Nineteenth-Century Art (1)

Ruskin, Baudelaire, and Art Criticism in Nineteenth-Century Europe. This seminar examines the art criticism and social opinions of John Ruskin and Charles Baudelaire, whose writings on English and French art and culture converged around the following issues: the instrumentality of nature in an industrial/urban society; the pleasures and tribulations of the commodity, fashion and femininity; the contesting claims of sensuality and morality in esthetic experience; and the nostalgia for the historical past. We explore how Ruskin and Baudelaire developed art criticism as a controversial medium for social and cultural commentary at the nexus of romanticism and modernism. Mr. Lukacher.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

364a. Seminar in Twentieth-Century Art (I)

Photographs and Books. This seminar studies the relationship of photographs to books, both in theory and in practice, in the twentieth century. Ms. Nesbit.

Topic for 2007/08a: Disciplinary Crises and the Expanded Arts in America: 1963-75. Beginning with the work of Andy Warhol in all its incestuous manifestations paintings, film, video-projects, multi-media performances, and so on-this seminar re-examines the status and value of the post-war work of art, independent of the modernist tradition by which it is still haunted. By 1963, at the latest, definitions of artistic practice enter into a widespread state of crisis as avant-garde artists overwhelmingly reject the traditional mediums and formats of painting, sculpture, dance and music in favor of activities that incorporate or privilege photography, film, video, ambient sound, texts, arbitrary scores and various found, industrial materials in their raw and expended states. This course proceeds from the premise that this transformation in aesthetic presentation is indicative of a more profound restructuring of perceptual, social and political experience that was underway during this time. Beneath the surface of these unconventional artworks, criteria of spontaneity, originality and virtuosity, as well as formal innovation, are increasingly exchanged for methods of task-based process, iteration and feedback to produce works comprised of open citations and mundane, anonymous activities. Ranging from silkscreens of public catastrophes, through technologies for bodily surveillance, to the appropriation of new sites and identities of affective control, the works examined in this course bear witness to the proliferating modalities of experience by which human subjectivity can increasingly be partitioned and conscripted for purposes of blunt utility and indifferent consumption. These works speak as well to the critical tactics by which artists recognize and resist these operations. In order to better isolate the acute pressures and varied means by which this relation of containment and resistance occurs, case studies alternate between major figures such as Yvonne Rainer, Robert Smithson, Robert Morris and more diffuse phenomena such as Happenings, Structural Film and Expanded Cinema, as well as select performances and gallery installations. Mr. McManus.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One two-hour period.

366a. Seminar in African American Art and Cultural History (1)

(Same as Africana Studies 366) Creativity and Politics During the Jazz Age and the Great Depression. Focusing on the experiences and representations of African Americans in the U.S., this seminar examines the arts, institutions, and ideas of the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s and New Deal projects of the 1930s and 1940s. Analyzing paintings, sculptures, photographs, novels, “folk arts,” murals, illustrations, manifestos, films, performances, and various systems of patronage, we explore relationships between art, politics, and society. Ms. Collins.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

370a. Seminar in Architectural History (1)

(Same as Urban Studies 370) Modern Architecture and Social Change. Many modem architects at the beginning of the twentieth century deliberately sought to lift the confining burdens of decorative convention associated with historical architecture. The grids of steel and glass were agents of change and progress. Years later, in the 1970s, at the time of the century’s next great shift of social direction, new laws began to protect historic architecture from that same “progress.” Now another thirty years on, the same preservation laws are being used to prevent the destruction or alteration of buildings from the 1950s and 1960s, the same buildings that once threatened “historical architecture.” What is going on? Using examples from the Vassar campus and selected sites in New York City, the course examines paradigmatic examples of preservation to see how this struggle of ideology and aesthetics is being played out and what it may mean for us today. The seminar explores a thesis about historic preservation: that its public value is not a record of the history of art or architecture but its protection of the confrontation with social history that old architecture forces on us. What, for example, do Vassar’s “trophy” modem buildings offer to help us think our way out of the crisis of today? Presentations and onsite investigation; experience in the documentation of historic buildings. The course is sponsored by the Getty Foundation Heritage Grant program and is jointly taught by Nicholas Adams and Paul Byard, Director of the Historic Preservation Program at the Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation and a principal of Platt Byard Dovell White Architects in New York. Mr. Adams, Mr. Byard.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 3-hour period.

[378b. Seminar in Museum Studies] (1)

What the Art Object Can Tell Us. This seminar focuses only on original works of art from the over 16,000 objects in the permanent and loan collections at the Loeb Art Center. The class explores how history and society affect the creation and reception of art objects. Special attention is paid to patterns of collecting, conservation, and connoisseurship. Mr. Mundy.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

Not offered in 2007/08.

382a. Belle Ribicoff Seminar in the History of Art ( 1/2)

The Golden Age of Spanish Painting. This seminar focuses on painting in Spain in the seventeenth century, including the works of Zurbarán, Velázquez, and Murillo, among others. Stylistic developments and religious themes are central, as are issues of artistic patronage (the church and courts) and the working lives of the artists (the guild structure). Many classes are held in the museums and collections of New York City (transportation provided). Ms. Stratton-Pruitt.

Prerequisite: permission of the chair.

One two-hour period.

Six-week course.

385a The Art of Nature: Painting, Literature, and Landscape Design in the Hudson Valley (1)

(Same as American Culture 385 and Environmental Studies 385) This seminar examines the vital concern for picturesque landscape—both actual and imaginary—in the evolution of art and cultural expression in the Hudson River Valley. The course investigates the relationship of important innovators in landscape design, such as Downing, Vaux, and Olmsted, to the literary and artistic works of Cole, Durand, Cooper, Irving, Bryant, and others. It includes a consideration of contemporary artists’ engagement with the environment, such as Eric Lindbloom’s photographs, Andy Goldsworthy’s wall at Storm King, and the installations of the Minetta Brook Hudson River Project, such as George Trakas’s pier at Beacon. The course has several fieldtrips to study the continuing impact of nineteenth-century landscape theory and traditions in the Hudson River Valley. Ms. Lucic, Mr. Peck

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

One 2-hour period.

399a or b. Senior Independent Work ( 1/2 or 1)

Open by permission of the instructor with the concurrence of the department adviser in the field of concentration. Not included in the minimum for the major.

Studio Work in Design, Drawing, Painting, Sculpture

I. Introductory

102a-103b. Basic Drawing (1)

Development of visual ideas through drawing. Line, shape, value, form, and texture are investigated through specific problems in a variety of media. Mr. Charlap, Mr. Bosman, Ms. Ruggeri, Ms. Newman.

Open to all classes.

Two 2-hour periods.

[108a. Color] (1)

To develop students’ understanding of color as a phenomenon and its role in art. Color theories are discussed and students solve problems to investigate color interactions using collage and paint. Mr. Charlap.

Open to all classes.

Not offered in 2007/08.

II. Intermediate

Prerequisites for intermediate courses: Art 102a-103b or by permission of instructor.

202a-203b. Painting I (1)

Basic painting skills are explored through a sequence of specific problems involving landscape, still life, and the figure. Instruction in the use of various painting media. Mr. Charlap.

Two 2-hour periods.

204a-205b. Sculpture I (1)

Introduction to the language of three-dimensional form through a sequence of specific problems which involve the use of various materials. Ms. Robins, Mr. Roseman.

Two 2-hour periods.

206a-207b. Drawing (1)

Intensive study of the figure with emphasis on establishing and pursuing a drawing idea. Study from life as well as the imagination with work from both still life and landscape. Mr. Charlap, Ms. Ruggeri.

Prerequisite: Art 102a.

Two 2-hour periods.

208a. Printmaking: Introduction (1)

A variety of printmaking concepts and procedures are explored through a series of assignments in monotype and collagraph. Mr. Bosman.

Corequisite: Art 102a.

Two 2-hour periods.

209b. Printmaking: Intaglio (1)

The intaglio techniques of line etching, aquatint, and drypoint, as well as their variations, are applied to making both black and white and color prints. Mr. Bosman.

Prerequisite: Art 102a.

Two 2-hour periods.

Alternate years.

212a. Photography (1)

An investigation of the visual language of black and white photography. The technical and expressive aspects of exposing film, developing negatives, and printing in the darkroom are explored. No previous photographic experience is necessary. Students are required to provide their own camera, film and photographic paper. Ms Linn.

Prerequisites: Art 102-103.

One 4-hour period.

213b. Photography II

This course explores the development of an individual photographic language. Technical aspects of exposure, developing and printing are taught as integral to the formation of a personal visual esthetic. All students are required to supply their own camera, film, and photographic paper. Ms Linn.

Prerequisite: permission of the instructor.

One 4-hour period.

214a. Color Digital Photography (1)

This course examines how color in light delineates space and form. The goal of this class is to record this phenomenon as accurately as possible. Scanning traditional silver gelatin film and digital capture systems are utilized. Digital color prints are produced using Photoshop and inkjet printing. Some of the topics covered are the documentary value of color information, the ability of the computer program to idealize our experience of reality, and the demise of the latent image. Ms. Linn.

Prerequisite: Art 212 or 213 and/or permission of the instructor.

Two 2-hour periods.

[232a. The Hudson River Observed] (1)

Drawing at sites along the Hudson River in Poughkeepsie with attention to the visible evidence of conservation, recreation, transportation and commerce. History, geology, and ecology of the river are also considered. Mr. Charlap.

Prerequisite: permission of instructor.

Not offered in 2007/08.

298a or b. Independent Study ( 1/2 or 1)

Open by permission of the instructor with the concurrence of the adviser in the field of concentration. Not included in the minimum for the major except by special permission. Mr. Charlap, Mr. Roseman, other instructors to be announced.

III. Advanced

Prerequisites for advanced courses: 2 units of 200-level work and as noted.

301a or b. Senior Project (1)

A supervised independent project in studio art.

302a, 303b. Painting II (1)

This course investigates painting through a series of assigned open-ended projects. Because it is intended to help students develop a context in which to make independent choices, it explores a wide range of conceptual and formal approaches to painting. Ms. Newman.

Prerequisite: Art 202a-203b.

Two 2-hour periods.

304a, 305b. Sculpture II (1)

The first semester is devoted to the study of perception and depiction. This is done through an intensive study of the human figure, still life, landscape, and interior space. Meaning is explored through a dialectic setup between subject and the means by which it is visually explored and presented. Within this discussion relationships between three-dimensional space and varying degrees of compressed space are also explored. In the second semester we concentrate on the realization of conceptual constructs as a way to approach sculpture. The discussions and assignments in both semesters revolve around ways in which sculpture holds ideas and symbolic meanings in the uses of visual language. Mr. Roseman.

Prerequisite: Art 204a-205b or by permission of instructor.

Two 2-hour periods.

379b. Computer Animation: Art, Science and Criticism (1)

(Same as Computer Science 379b and Media Studies 379b) An interdisciplinary course in Computer Animation aimed at students with previous experience in Computer Science, Studio Art, or Media Studies. The course introduces students to mathematical and computational principles and techniques for describing the shape, motion and shading of three-dimensional figures in Computer Animation. It introduces students to artistic principles and techniques used in drawing, painting and sculpture, as they are translated into the context of Computer Animation. It also encourages students to critically examine Computer Animation as a medium of communication. Finally, the course exposes students to issues that arise when people from different scholarly cultures attempt to collaborate on a project of mutual interest. The course is structured as a series of animation projects interleaved with screenings and classroom discussions. Mr. Ellman, Mr. Roseman.

Prerequisite: Art 102-103, or by special permission of instructors.

Two 2-hour periods.

399a or b. Senior Independent Study ( 1/2 or 1)

Open by permission of the instructor with the concurrence of the department adviser in the field of concentration. Not included in the minimum for the major except by special permission. Mr. Charlap, Mr. Roseman, other instructors to be announced.

Studio Work in Architectural Design

275a. Architectural Drawing (1)

Elements of architectural drawing, focusing on the articulation, development and representation of architectural form. The first of a two-course sequence, drawing techniques include Multiview, paraline and perspective, with emphasis placed on the objective utilization of these techniques. Instructor to be announced.

Prerequisite: Art 102-103, corequisite: one of the following 200-level architectural history courses: Art 220, 270, 272 or 273, or by permission of the instructor.

Two 2-hour periods.

276b. Architectural Drawing (1)

Elements of architectural drawing, focusing on the advanced articulation, development and representation of architectural form. The second of a two-course sequence, drawing techniques include Multi-view, paraline and perspective, with emphasis placed on the analytical utilization of these techniques. Instructor to be announced.

Special permission.

Prerequisite: Art 275, corequisite: one of the following 200 level architectural history courses: Art 220, 270, 272 or 273.

Two 2-hour periods.

286b. Venice: Art in the Lagoon City, 828-1797 (1)

Venice's unique geographical location in the reflective waters of the Adriatic, and at the crossroads between East and West has had a profound impact on all aspects of Venetian life and culture. This course investigates the artistic production of the Lagoon City from its foundation in the ninth century to the fall of the Republic in 1797. The compelling works of Venetian artists, such as Bellini, Giorgione, Titian, Tintoretto, Canaletto and Tiepolo, and the great civic and religious monuments, such as the Palazzo Ducale and the Basillica di San Marco, is considered in light of the sophisticated political and social systems of the Venetian Republic. Issues such as the development of the distinctive urban fabric, the invention of a civic iconography, the role of the artist and the Venetian workshop practices as well as the impact of the Islamic world, private and corporate patronage, and the depiction of women - dressed and undressed, is examined. Ms. Wamsler.

Prerequisite: Art 105-106 or permission of the instructor.

375b. Architectural Design (1)

Elements of architectural design, focusing on the conceptualization, refinement and expression of architectural ideas. Instructor to be announced.

Special permission.

Prerequisite: Art 275 and 276, corequisite; two of the following 200-level architectural history courses: Art 220, 270, 272 or 273.

One 3-hour period, and one 1-hour period.