Art History

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The Art History program, which draws approximately 750 students each semester, employs nationally and internationally recognized faculty. We offer courses in the history of art and architecture from pre-history to the present. Upon completion of the major, Art History majors are required to possess:

  • a general knowledge of the monuments and principal artists of all major historical periods,
  • one or more advanced areas of study (e.g. Renaissance, Contemporary, or Non-Western) within the history of art,
  • a solid foundation in art historical theory, analysis, and criticism, and
  • a functional knowledge of the creative process, gained through participation in one or more studio courses. Majors are expected to remain actively engaged in research and analytical writing throughout the course of their studies and to achieve adequate mastery of at least one foreign language in order to perform research using primary sources.

This rigorous program of study provides strong academic preparation for further study at the graduate level, as well as work in museums or other professional organizations in the visual arts. A degree in art history involves training in research and analysis, verbal and visual skills, and critical and creative thinking that are useful in any professional field. As new electronic technologies and tools for research are becoming increasingly important for the discipline, students are also trained in the use of image archives, databases, and repositories such as JSTOR, ArtSTOR and WorldCat. These complement more traditional methods of research. The study of art history also provides an unmatched foundation for understanding diverse cultures and thriving in a multicultural society.

Studio art majors are also required to take courses in Art History in order to recognize the interrelationships of form, content, and context as they have evolved through the millennia. They are also encouraged to view their own art work as part of this continuum and within such context as they will function as professionals. Graduate students in the Humanities and MFA Studio Art programs also study art history as an integral component of their programs.

Art history students at UTA have the opportunity to pursue research and study based on close firsthand observation of artworks in major collections—an invaluable experience which enhances learning in the classroom. UTA is located in the heart of the DFW metroplex, home to several prominent and internationally recognized museums. The Kimbell Art Museum, the Dallas Museum of Art, the Amon Carter Museum of American Art, The Modern Art Museum in Fort Worth, the Nasher Sculpture Garden, and the Trammell and Margaret Crow Collection of Asian Art are all within 30 minutes of the university. This proximity to such important museums (in terms of both their respective permanent collections and temporary exhibitions) makes original works of art accessible to the student, which is invaluable for any student interested in art and its history. Additionally, UTA has recently acquired the Dowdey-Campbell African Art Collection, on view in the Visual Resource Commons. Whether in the classroom or at a museum, the field of art history combines aesthetic experience with critical, analytical understanding of the subject.

In recent years, and in competition from other area graduate level programs, UTA Art History undergraduate majors have secured internships at most of the aforementioned museums. Several such students have received internships at national museums, including the Museum of Fine Arts Houston, the Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts in Alabama, and the National Gallery of Art in Washington DC. Majors are actively involved in the UTA student organization Art History Student Union, which organizes professional and social activities. Increasing numbers of UTA Art History majors pursue graduate work in art history both locally (at Southern Methodist University, Texas Christian University) nationally and internationally (at University of Michigan-Ann Arbor; Tufts University-Boston; the Courtauld Institute of the University of London; Christie’s London; University of Kansas-Lawrence; Cornell University), often times with scholarship funding.

Dowdey-Campbell African Art Collection

African Art Collection Link

Slide Review

Slide Review Link

Courses:

ART 1309
Art of the Western World I: Greece through Renaissance
Major developments in art, from Archaic Greece through the European Renaissance.
ART 1310
Art of the Western World II: Baroque through Modern
The work of major figures in European and American art from the 17th century to the present.
ART 1317
The Art of Nonwestern Traditions
This course is designed to introduce students to works of art in various media developed in isolation from the European tradition, including the arts of the Near East, Asia, the Ancient Americas, Africa, and Oceania. Using visual arts as a tool, this course will introduce students to the diverse social customs, religions, and beliefs of nonwestern peoples.
ART 2300
Methods for the Study of Art History
Sources and procedures of art historical research. Introduction to methodologies of art historical scholarship. Use of computer and data retrieval is emphasized.
ART 3302
Art of Antiquity
Art and architecture of Greco-Roman antiquity, beginning with the Aegean Bronze Age (ca 2500 BC) and concluding with the Late Roman Empire (4th century AD). Emphasis on the political and ritual role of art, especially in Periclean Athens and Augustan Rome.
ART 3304
Japanese Art & Architecture
Introduces students to the art and architectural traditions of Japan from the Jomon (12,000/10,500 - 300 BCE) through the Tokugawa periods (1615 - 1868). The course will focus on the cultural, social, and political movements that informed artistic changes over time. Prerequisite: ART 1317 or permission of the instructor.
ART 3306
Byzantine and Medieval Art
Art and architecture of the Mediterranean area and Northern Europe, beginning with Early Christian and Byzantine period (4th century AD) and concluding with the Late Middle Ages (14th century AD). Special attention is given to the religious and political context of art including Christian and Islamic influences. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3307
The Early Renaissance
Developments in the art and architecture of Italy in the 13th and 14th Centuries focused on the changing status of the artist and the political and religious role of art. Includes a workshop based on 14th century recipes for the making of art. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3308
High Renaissance
Developments in the art and architecture of 16th century Italy (Leonardo, Raphael, and Michelangelo) understood in historical context. Themes include the notion of creative genius in the Renaissance; Mannerism and the Counter-Reformation; the restoration of the Sistine Chapel. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3310
Film as Art
The history and aesthetics of the motion picture from 1895 to the present day. Screening and analysis of film as an artistic medium, focusing on various technical innovations, filmmakers, and landmarks of film history. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3311
American Art
The role of art in the shaping of a national identity with emphasis on our beginnings and attention to vernacular and indigenous traditions. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3312
Neo-classicism and Romanticism
European art from c.1760 to c.1840. Emphasis is placed on cultural and historical contexts. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3313
Backgrounds of Modern Art
Painting, sculpture, and photography of the period c. 1850-1900 in western Europe, focusing on Realism, Impressionism, Post-Impressionism and Symbolism (fin de siecle). Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3314
Modern Art
The history of European and American art from the late 19th century to the mid-20th century. Emphasis on the formal and conceptual evolution of modernism in art and society, and on the rise of the avant-garde. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3315
Impressionism
The history, theory, and aesthetics of Impressionist painting in France, from 1860 to 1900. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3316
Ancient Egyptian & Near Eastern Art & Archaeology
Introduces select aspects of the material culture of ancient Mesopotamia and Egypt, with emphasis on religion and notions of kingship. Prerequisite: ART 1317 or permission of the instructor.
ART 3319
Art & Architecture of India
Explores the history of Indian art and architecture, beginning with the Harappan civilization and progressing to the present. India's religious and cultural impact on its East and Southeast Asian neighbors will also be examined. Prerequisite: ART 1317 or permission of the instructor.
ART 3320
Art of the Ancient Americas
Art and architecture of the Olmecs, Maya, Aztecs, Inca, Anasazi and other selected cultures of Mexico, Central America, South America and North America. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3321
Chinese Art & Architecture
Introduces students to the art and architectural traditions of China from Neolithic times (5th to 3rd millennium BCE) to the end of the Qing dynasty in the early 20th century. The course will focus on the cultural, social, and political movements that informed artistic changes over time. Prerequisite: ART 1317 or permission of the instructor.
ART 3325
Studies in the Baroque
Developments in the art and architecture of Baroque Europe (Italy, Low Countries and Spain), with an emphasis on patronage and the social, religious and historical context of artistic production. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3331
British Art
An overview of British art from prehistory to the present with an emphasis on cultural and historical contexts. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and 1310.
ART 3389
Contemporary Art
A focus on the period from the mid-20th century to the present emphasizing the aesthetics of late modernism and the beginnings of the postmodern period including Abstract Expressionism, Pop, Minimal, Conceptual, and multicultural approaches. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3391
History of Photography
The history of still photography from its inception to the present. Emphasis on the conceptual and technical evolution of photography as an artistic medium. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 3392
History and Aesthetics of the Video Image
History, theory, and analysis of video/film/computer in relation to visualization and new genres. Study of symbolic rhetoric, composition, sound/music, editing, movement, and style. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and 1310.
ART 4301
Art and Gender
Approaches to the interpretation of art from the stance of gender and feminism. Emphasis is placed on the work of significant female artists and on the gendered representations of art. Offered as ART 4301 and WOMS 4301; credit will be granted only once. Fulfills the Social/Cultural Studies requirement. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4306
Mid-renaissance
Art and architecture in 15th century Italy, beginning with developments in Renaissance Florence. The relation of humanism and science to the visual arts, patronage, and the social and historical contexts of artistic production. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4307
Special Topics in Asian Art
Special studies seminar dealing with various aspects of the history and development of Asian art, architecture, and archeology. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: ART 1317 or permission of the instructor.
ART 4308
Museum Practice
A continuation of ART 3300 with emphasis on current issues and developments in museum practice. The seminar concentrates on the University's Art Gallery, art exhibitions, and guest essayist programs, supplemented by lectures and readings. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4310
Topics in Film Study
Historical surveys of nonfiction film, experimental cinema, and genres (e.g., the western, the gangster film, science-fiction films), as well as geographical or national movements (e.g., German expressionism, Italian neo-realism, French new wave) and film theory and criticism. The particular subject will change from year to year. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4312
Topics in Ninteenth Century Art
An in-depth study of topics in European and American art c. 1780 to 1900, such as the art and revolutions (the French Revolution, the American Revolution, 1830, 1848, the Commune); Romanticism; Symbolism. May be repeated for credit as course content changes. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4314
Topics in 20th Century Art
Topics from c. 1900 to c. 2000, such as analysis of an individual movement, medium, or theme. May be repeated for credit as course content changes. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4315
Aspects of Contemporary Art
Topics from c. 1970 to the present, such as performance and conceptual art, art in and about the natural environment, post-modernism and critical perspectives, art in the social context, and the genres of the 1980s. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4317
Art and Islam
Islamic art and architecture from the seventh century to the present, covering visual arts from the Arabian peninsula, north and west Africa, southern Spain, central Asia and South Asia. Emphasis will also be given to the cultural and religious aspects that shape Islamic art, such as the forms and functions of different examples of sacred architecture; calligraphy; and the arts associated with pilgrimage.
ART 4330
18th Century Art
A history of European art from the end of the Baroque era through the Rococo and Neoclassical styles to the beginning of Romanticism. Emphasis will be on cultural and global contexts in which paintings, prints, sculptures, and architecture were produced. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4390
Conference Course: Art History
Independent study or research in an area of art history agreed upon in advance with the instructor. Written permission and the determination of obligations and objectives are required before registration. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.
ART 4396
Special Studies in Art History
Subjects of immediate interest in various fields of art history; to complement temporary museum exhibitions and/or faculty research specializations. May be repeated for credit as course content changes. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and 1310 and permission of the instructor. Prerequisite: ART 1309 and ART 1310.

Facilities:

  • + Classrooms, fully equipped with audiovisual resources.
  • + 1 seminar room (FA 2102, with 20 seats)
  • + 1 classroom (FA 2102A, with 55 seats)
  • + 1 auditorium (FA 148, with 150 seats)
  • + The Architecture & Fine Arts Library (ARCH 104) http://library.uta.edu/afa/
  • + The Visual Resource Commons, VRC (FA 2109, open weekdays from 9am - 5pm)
  • + The VRC holds a wide variety of resources including computers, scanners, books, periodicals, videos, & DVD's available for use