For more information on courses and major requirements, please see the academic catalog.

Jump to: Studio ArtArt History


Studio Art Courses

  • ARTS 110: Observational Drawing

    A beginning course for non-majors and for those who contemplate majoring in art. The aim of the course is to give the student an appreciation of art and of drawing. An understanding of aesthetic values and development of technical skills are achieved through a series of studio problems which naturally follow one another and deal with the analysis and use of line, shape, volume, space, and tone. A wide range of subjects are used, including still life, landscape and the human figure.

    6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2024, Winter 2024, Spring 2024 · Jade Hoyer, David Lefkowitz, Eleanor Jensen
  • ARTS 113: Field Drawing

    A beginning drawing course for students who are interested in developing their skills in drawing from nature, to better see and understand their surroundings. Class material covers line, form, dimension, value, perspective, and space using a variety of drawing materials. Subject matter includes specimens, plant forms, and the landscape. Students will use a portable sketchbook, and classes during the second part of the term are primarily outside. Locations include the Arb and field trips; access to these sites does include walking on unpaved paths and uneven terrain.

    6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023, Fall 2023, Spring 2024, Spring 2024 · Eleanor Jensen
  • ARTS 114: Architectural Studies in Europe Program: Introduction to Drawing Architecture

    Suitable for students of any skill level, this course teaches different drawing techniques both in a classroom setting and on location at various architectural sites. The course aims to hone observational and sketching skills and to develop greater awareness of formal characteristics in the built environment. Consideration of line, tone, shape, scale, surface, volume and other foundational concepts and technical skills will be emphasized. Drawing practice will be reinforced with sketching assignments throughout the trip at different locations and types of structures.

    6 credits; S/CR/NC; Arts Practice; offered Winter 2024 · Daniel Bruggeman
  • ARTS 117: Living London Program: Visualizing Renaissance England

    In this introductory course, devised for all skill levels, students will explore England through on-site observational drawing, watercolor, and mixed media. The critical observation and artistic rendering of England’s artifacts, artwork, architecture, gardens, and landscapes will afford students a window into British culture as they acquaint themselves with the country’s visual vocabulary. The course will address the technical aspects of drawing, including how to use line, value, composition, and color effectively. Additional components will include journaling, tours of historical sites, and museum and gallery visits (including the National and National Portrait Galleries, Hampton Court Palace, St. Paul’s Cathedral, etc.).

    Prerequisites: Participation in OCS Theater & Lit in London program not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 122: Introduction to Sculpture

    The ability to build structures that reflect or alter the environment is a basic defining characteristic of our species. In this class we explore creative construction in three dimensions using a variety of media, including plaster, wood, and steel. Using both natural and architectural objects for inspiration, we will examine and manipulate form, space, and expressive content to develop a deeper understanding of this core trait and reawaken our experience of the spaces we inhabit.

    6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Winter 2024, Spring 2024 · Stephen Mohring
  • ARTS 124: Praxis and Poetics in 3D Art and Design

    In this course students will combine the fundamentals of 3D design and thinking with conceptual frameworks that incorporate model-making and architectural forms. The course will be composed of different sections of study, each relating to various ways of thinking in 3D, and each grounded in the praxis of informed action within a cultural context. Students will simultaneously develop an understanding of the history, context and generative possibilities of creative 3D work, while also developing a personal voice.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 128: Ceramics: Handbuilding Through History

    This course provides a historical framework through which students will study clay’s crucial role in our everyday lives and in the advancement of civilization. Texts and articles will guide the study of historical objects while videos and discussion provide a glimpse into contemporary studio practice. Hands-on projects in low fire and oil-based clays will put knowledge into action as students create 3D objects and 2D sketches and plans. Various firing processes are dependent on access to the ceramics studio. Use of a digital camera (phone ok) is required.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 130: Beginning Ceramics

    This course is an introduction to wheel throwing and handbuilding as primary methods of construction for both functional and non-functional ceramic forms. An understanding of ceramic history and technical skills are achieved through studio practice, readings, and demonstrations. Emphasis is placed on the development of strong three-dimensional forms as well as the relationship of form to surface. Coursework includes a variety of firing techniques and development of surface design.

    6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Winter 2024 · Kelly Connole, Juliane Shibata
  • ARTS 139: Beginning Photography

    In this course students explore photography as a means of understanding and interacting with both the world and the inner self. We will emphasize a balance of technical skills, exploration of personal vision, and development of critical thinking and vocabulary relating to photography. Beginning students will learn how to use analogue and digital cameras, to use basic studio lighting equipment, and to print their own photographic work. Additionally, students will learn to develop a portfolio as an ongoing process that requires informed and critical decision making to assemble a body of work. Collectively we will critique, analyze, give feedback on work, and discuss readings that are pertinent to the production of images in contemporary times.

    6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024 · Xavier Tavera Castro
  • ARTS 140: The Digital Landscape

    Question the formal, moral and biological implications of your “framed view-point,” as you move your lens across the natural, urban and domestic landscapes of your community. Explore the images of a range of artists, who examine what it means to create representations of our human/ nature relationship. Demonstrations, readings, and discussions will help us create a final portfolio of digital images and text. Harness your own digital camera (smartphone and DSLR) in new ways, while engaging in its connection to analog photographic traditions. Students may borrow cameras from the art department, as needed.

     

     

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 141: Experimental Photography

    In this course we will explore the rich history of photography’s experimental development through an examination of its lineage within digital photographic processes. Our focus will be on digital experimentation and harnessing experimental creative play with photoshop and the natural world. Demonstrations will cover a wide range of digital photography techniques, highlighting the digital relationship to analog photography, photomontage, digital post-production and its connection to toning, solarization and photograms. Students will harness their own digital cameras (DSLR or smartphone) in new ways to create a visual portfolio amongst writings of their experimental investigations.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 142: The Book as Art Object

    With books we understand, in a contained object, specific qualities that an author conveys through composition, sequence, and information in an art form. Students will balance the cultivation of technical skills with exploration of personal vision in the creation and conceptualization of a series of books taking into consideration the diverse students’ disciplines. The class incorporates both digital and analog book technologies. We will analyze an array of publications from classical to contemporary artist book, the journal, the fanzine, the comic book, the pulp, and the pamphlet. We will pay special attention to the conceptual space of the book, sequencing and layout of images, production, materials and distribution of books. Topics include the discussion of the decline and resurgence of the physical book, the poetics of the books, the book as metaphor, the conceptual space of the book, and books as narrative and non-narrative sequences.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 151: Metalsmithing

    A basic course in metal design and fabrication of primarily jewelry forms and functional objects. Specific instruction will be given in developing the skills of forming, joining, and surface enrichment to achieve complex metal pieces. Students will learn to render two-dimensional drawings while exploring three-dimensional design concepts. The course examines how jewelry forms relate to the human body. Found materials will be used in addition to traditional metals including copper, brass, and silver.

    6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024 · Danny Saathoff
  • ARTS 152: Adornment: Finding Value in Everyday Objects

    This course will focus on creating both functional and fantastical body adornment from
    non-traditional jewelry making materials. Emphasis will be placed on recycled and up-cycled components, creating meaningful work in times of scarcity and thinking beyond typical jewelry norms.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 180: Bookbinding

    This class will introduce the fundamentals of hand bookbinding with special emphasis on making journals and albums. We will learn several different binding methods using historical and non-traditional techniques and a variety of different materials, tools and adhesives. In addition we will cover basic box making. Boxes, like books, serve many purposes, one being to house and protect valuable and fragile objects. We will make slipcases and clamshell boxes to protect books and prints.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 210: Life Drawing

    Understanding the basic techniques of drawing the human form is fundamental to an art education and is the emphasis of this class. Humans have been engaged in the act of self-representation since the beginning of time. The relationship artists have had with drawing the human body is complex and has been the subject of religious, philosophical and personal investigation for centuries. Concentrating on representational drawing techniques we will explore a variety of media and materials. Supplemented by lectures, readings and critiques, students will develop an understanding of both contemporary and historical approaches to drawing the human form. Our emphasis this term will be on anatomy, the study of portraiture, and the complexity of hands and feet.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 142 or 211 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Spring 2024 · Soren Hope
  • ARTS 211: Topics in Art and the Environment: Drawing the Anthropocene

    Focused around studio projects emphasizing drawing media, this course explores the complexity and variety of representations of the natural world. Students will be introduced to artists and writers who address the impact of human activity on the environment from a range of historical and topical perspectives.

    Prerequisites: Studio Arts 110, 113, 114, 142 or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 212: Studio Art Seminar in the South Pacific: Mixed-Media Drawing

    This course involves directed drawing in bound sketchbooks, using a variety of drawing media, and requires ongoing, self-directed drawing in these visual journals. Subjects will include landscape, nature study, figure, and portraits. The course will require some hiking in rugged areas.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114 or 142 or previous comparable drawing experience approved by the professor. Participation in OCS program not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 222: Sculptural Practice

    In this class we will expand upon your previous studio art coursework, engaging multiple materials including plaster, wood, steel, and mixed media. Through a series of short and two long term projects, we will explore the joys and challenges of working in three dimensions. You will learn (or hone) basic building skills, mold-making and plaster fabrication techniques, as well as basic metal fabrication including cold work and welding mild steel.

    Prerequisites: Studio Arts 130, 151, 122, 322, 232, 327, 230, 252, Computer Science 232 or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 228: Ceramics: History and Design

    This course provides a historical framework through which students will better understand clay’s crucial role in our everyday lives and in the advancement of civilization.  Texts and articles will guide the study of historical objects while videos and discussion will provide a glimpse into contemporary studio practice. Hands-on design projects will put knowledge into action as students create three-dimensional objects using a variety of simple materials and two-dimensional plans for future work. Access to a digital camera (phone ok) and basic drawing materials is required.  Access to a printer is recommended.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 130 or 236 not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 230: Ceramics: Throwing

    This course is focused on the creative possibilities of the pottery wheel as a means to create utilitarian objects. Students are challenged to explore conceptual ideas while maintaining a dedication to function. An understanding of aesthetic values and technical skills are achieved through studio practice, readings, and demonstrations. Basic glaze and clay calculations, high fire and wood kiln firing techniques, and a significant civic engagement component, known as the Empty Bowls Project, are included in the course.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 128, 130, 236 or high school experience with wheel throwing and instructor permission 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Spring 2024 · Kelly Connole
  • ARTS 232: Ceramics: Handbuilding

    This course is an introduction to handbuilding as a primary method to construct both functional and non-functional ceramic forms with a focus on experimentation. An understanding of aesthetic values and technical skills are achieved through studio practice, readings, and demonstrations. Basic glaze and clay calculations, kiln firing techniques, and basic throwing methods will be covered.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 122, 128, 130, 150, 151, 236 or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 236: Ceramics: Vessels for Tea

    Students will learn techniques used by Japanese potters, and those from around the world, to make vessels associated with the production and consumption of tea. Both handbuilding and wheel throwing processes will be explored throughout the term. We will investigate how Japanese pottery traditions, especially the Mingei “arts of the people” movement of the 1920s, have influenced contemporary ceramics practice in the United States and how cultural appropriation impacts arts practice. Special attention will be paid to the use of local materials from Carleton’s Arboretum as well as wood firing and traditional raku processes.

    Prerequisites: Requires concurrent registration in Art History 266 6 credits; Arts Practice, Intercultural Domestic Studies; offered Fall 2023 · Kelly Connole
  • ARTS 238: Photography I

    This course introduces the student to the operation of the 35mm camera, film processing and black and white printing techniques. Through lectures, demonstrations, readings, field trips and critiques we rigorously view and question the nature of photography. Assignments will cover a range of photographic genres. A personal investigation of these photographic experiences will result in a final portfolio of finished prints and accompanying field guide. Manual film cameras provided.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114, 140, 141 or 142 not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 240: Introduction to Film and Digital Photography

    Learn the fine art of both black and white and color photography through the use of light sensitive silver and pigmented ink. Like the alchemist we will separate and join together the materials, concepts and technology of the past with today’s digital image. As we transition between chemicals in the darkroom and Photoshop in the digital lab we will explore the creative and cultural nature of photography. Studio production will be promoted through field trips, readings and critiques. We encourage students to bring their own digital camera, however we do have some digital cameras to loan out. Film cameras will be provided.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114, 140, 141 or 142 not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 243: Fundamentals of Photography

    In this course we will explore photography as a means of understanding and interacting with both the world and the inner self. We will emphasize a balance of technical skills, exploration of personal vision, and development of critical thinking and vocabulary relating to photography. Our own image making will be considered in the context of photographic history, visual literacy, and the universe of imagery in which we live. We will work with Photoshop, scanners, printers, and digital cameras, as well as cell phone cameras, and found images. We encourage students to bring their own digital camera, however we do have some digital cameras to loan out.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114, or 142 or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 244: Alternative Processes

    Over the last half century, the media environment has become dominantly digital, and the practice of photography has been transformed into a digital one. In response, contemporary artists and image makers have recently been pursuing analog practices in a search for more engaging material output.  In this course, students will be introduced to a series of alternative printing methods that will result in tangible works.  Instruction will be given in cyanotype, liquid light, Van Dyke brown printing, and Platinum Palladium. Experimentation and creative departures will be highly encouraged.

    Prerequisites: Previous Studio Art course not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 245: Constructed Image

    In this course we will explore image making beyond the still photographic image. Students will investigate the possibilities of construction and manipulation of photographic images using various camera and darkroom methods including sequence, multiples, narrative, installation and book formats, marking and altering photographic surfaces, using applied color, and toning both in-camera and manually. Special attention will be put into display and installation of the work produced.

    Prerequisites: One 100 level Studio Arts courses or instructor consent 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023 · Xavier Tavera Castro
  • ARTS 252: Metalsmithing: Ancient Techniques, New Technologies

    This course focuses on lost wax casting, 3D modeling and printing, and stone setting as methods to create jewelry and small sculptural objects in bronze and silver. Specific instruction will be given in the proper use of tools, torches, and other equipment, wax carving, and general metalsmithing techniques. Through the use of 3D modeling software and 3D printing, new technologies will expedite traditional processes allowing for a broad range of metalworking possibilities.

    Prerequisites: Studio Arts 151 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Spring 2024 · Danny Saathoff
  • ARTS 260: Painting

    The course serves as an introduction to the language of painting. Students develop a facility with the physical tools of painting–brushes, paint and surfaces–as they gain a fluency with the basic formal elements of the discipline–color, form, value, composition and space. Students are also challenged to consider the choices they make in determining the content and ideas expressed in the work, and how to most effectively convey them.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114, or instructor consent 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024 · David Lefkowitz
  • ARTS 262: Watercolor

    This course provides an introduction to the medium of watercolor painting and gouache (opaque water-based paint) on paper surfaces. Students will develop an understanding of basic color interactions and a wide spectrum of paint application strategies from meticulous refined brushwork to fluid, expressive markmaking. 

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114 or instructor consent 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Spring 2024 · David Lefkowitz
  • ARTS 273: Studio Art Seminar in the South Pacific: Printmaking

    Intaglio and relief printmaking. Students will receive instruction in all of the processes of intaglio and relief printmaking. Students will explore the possibilities of these forms of printmaking in conjunction with their work in the drawing class.

    Prerequisites: Studio Arts 110, 113 or 114 and acceptance in OCS Program not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 274: Printmaking – Silkscreen and Relief

    Students will work in two primary printmaking media: relief and/or silkscreen. Through printmaking techniques, layering, color mixing, and generating multiples, students will explore how to develop a narrative in their work and build upon skills established in prerequisite drawing classes.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 110, 113, 114 or instructor consent 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Fall 2023 · Jade Hoyer
  • ARTS 275: Studio Art Program: The Physical and Cultural Environment

    This is a wide-ranging course that asks students to engage with their surroundings and make broad connections during the South Pacific program. It examines ecological topics, such as natural history, invasive species, conservation efforts, and how the physical landscape has changed since colonialism. Students will also study indigenous people’s history, culture, art, and profound relationship to landscape. This course includes readings, films, local speakers, and diverse site visits.

    Prerequisites: Acceptance to Carleton OCS program not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 277: Printmaking: Relief Processes

    The subject will introduce the basics of Relief printmaking. It will explore different mark making and cutting techniques (both traditional and contemporary) suitable for use with a selection of relief printing and registration methods. Relief will cover the use of the reduction (single plate) and multi-plate processes using wood, metal or plastic plates. Safe printing and studio procedures will also be introduced. The subject will look at ways to create drawings as suitable aids for the relief process. Experimentation will be fostered using a variety of tools and print processes to make a series of investigative works. The relief process will be directly linked to its historical origins.

    Prerequisites: Studio Arts 110, 113, 114, 210, 211 or 212 or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 278: Printmaking: Intaglio Processes

    This course will emphasize intaglio printmaking, a process that allows for a rich array of mark-making and the creation of multiples. Through the use of different intaglio techniques such as hard ground, aquatint, and drypoint, students will explore and generate imagery with emphasis on experimentation, state proofing / animation, and narrative.

    Prerequisites: Studio Arts 110, 113, 114, 210, 211 or 212 or instructor consent 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Winter 2024 · Jade Hoyer
  • ARTS 298: Junior Studio Art Practicum

    Required for the studio major, and strongly recommended for the junior year, this seminar is for student artists considering lives as producers of visual culture. At the core of the course are activities that help build students’ identities as practicing artists. These include the selection and installation of artwork for the Junior Show, a presentation about their own artistic development, and studio projects in media determined by each student that serve as a bridge between media-specific studio art courses and the independent creative work they will undertake as Seniors in Comps. The course will also include reading and discussion about what it means to be an artist today, encounters with visiting artists and trips to exhibition venues in the Twin Cities.

    6 credits; S/CR/NC; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Spring 2024, Spring 2024 · Jade Hoyer, Danny Saathoff
  • ARTS 322: Sculpture 2: Form and Context

    In this intimate and nimble seminar, we will continue our exploration of the many wonders of sculpture, further developing our previous studio-based investigations. During several short and two prolonged problem-based assignments we will work to develop our personal voice and a more nuanced material expression in our art.  We’ll be introducing interior and exterior site-specific installation, casting, advanced woodworking and welding techniques, as well as the potential for interactive robotics and digital media, to the range of possibilities. In Arts 322 you are free to explore the processes that most intrigue you–no specific material or sculptural format will be required.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 122, 150, 151, 232 or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 327: Woodworking: The Table

    This class explores the wondrous joys and enlightening frustrations of an intensive material focus in wood. From the perspective of both functional and non-functional design, we will examine wood’s physical, visual, philosophical, and expressive properties. Several short projects will culminate in an examination of the table as a conceptual construct, and six week design/build challenge.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 122, 222, 322 or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 330: Advanced Ceramics

    Designed to build on previous coursework in ceramics, this course focuses on sophisticated handbuilding and throwing techniques and advanced problem solving. Development of a personal voice is encouraged through open-ended assignments deepening exploration into the expressive nature of clay. Glaze calculations, kiln firing theory, and alternative firing techniques will broaden approaches to surface design. This course can be repeated for credit.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 128, 130, 230, 232, 234 or 236 or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 332: Ceramic Design: The Vase

    In this seminar students expand on their knowledge of handbuilding and throwing techniques to focus specifically on the creation of vessels to hold flowers. A review of historic and contemporary vase forms will lead to exercises in designing objects that interact with natural materials. Surface design will focus on the use of local materials including clay from Carleton’s Arboretum and wood ash from the studio’s wood kiln.

    Prerequisites: Two Ceramics courses (Studio Art 130, 230, 232, 234, 236 or 330) or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 339: Advanced Photography

    In this course students explore photography as a means of understanding and interacting with both the world and the inner self. We will emphasize a balance of technical skills, exploration of personal vision, and development of critical thinking and vocabulary relating to photography. Advanced students will focus on developing a concise body of work independently through two self-directed longer projects. Instruction includes: use of large format cameras with a hand meter, film scanning, and strobe lighting. Students will learn to develop a portfolio as an ongoing process that requires informed and critical decision making to assemble a body of work. Collectively we will critique, analyze, give feedback on work and discuss readings that are pertinent to the production of images in contemporary times.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 139, 142, 244, 245 or instructor permission 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Spring 2024 · Xavier Tavera Castro
  • ARTS 360: Advanced Painting and Drawing

    This course is designed for students who want to explore these 2-D media in greater depth. Students may choose to work exclusively in painting or drawing, or may combine media if they like. Some projects in the course emphasize strengthening students’ facility in traditional uses of each medium, while others are designed to encourage students to challenge assumptions about what a painting or drawing can be. Projects focus on art making as an evolving process and a critical engagement with systems of visual representation.

    Prerequisites: Either Studio Art 260 or two of the following courses: Studio Art 110, 113, 114, 210, 212, 273, 274 6 credits; Arts Practice; offered Spring 2024 · Soren Hope
  • ARTS 374: Advanced Printmaking and Book Arts

    This course is a continuation from the introductory level print courses, offering instruction in any of the print media–intaglio, relief, silk-screen, lithography and letterpress. In addition, several binding techniques are taught, and some of the assignments can be fulfilled by book-based projects.

    Prerequisites: Studio Art 273 or 274 not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 394: Studio Art Research

    Individual projects in studio arts associated with ongoing research. Projects are untaken with the direct supervision of a faculty member. Regular individual meetings, written progress reports, and group critiques sessions are integrated into the term to develop skills in individual studio practice.

    Prerequisites: Students will be admitted from the waitlist, instructor consent required not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTS 398: Senior Studio Art Practicum

    Required for the studio major in the senior year, this seminar is designed to prepare emerging artists for continued studio practice. This class engages students in the process of presentation of artwork in a professional setting (the senior art exhibition) and in various other capacities. Students engage with visiting artists, readings, and exhibitions as they begin to develop their own independent paths towards studio work outside of the academic setting.

    3 credits; S/CR/NC; Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Spring 2024 · Kelly Connole
  • ARTS 400: Integrative Exercise

    The integrative exercise for the studio arts major consists of an independent research project involving experimentation, reflection, and deep engagement in the production of a cohesive body of artwork. The comps process is designed to give students the opportunity to develop ideas over the course of a term with close advice and support of the studio faculty and fellow students. Class of 2024, students register for six credits in Fall or Winter term. In rare cases and in consultation with the studio faculty, exceptions may be made to allow comps to be spread over two terms. Class of 2025 the department highly recommends students take five credits of comps fall or winter term of the senior year and one credit in the spring term of the senior year. Class of 2026 will be required to take five credits of comps fall or winter term of the senior year and one credit in the spring term of senior year.

    1-6 credit; S/NC; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024

Art History Courses

  • ARTH 100: Art and Culture in the Gilded Age

    Staggering wealth inequality spurred by transformative technological innovation and unbridled corporate power. Political tumult fueled by backsliding civil rights legislation, disputed elections, and anti-immigrant sentiment. Culture wars. American imperialism. Such characteristics have increasingly fueled comparisons between the present day and the late-nineteenth century in the United States. The Gilded Age witnessed the flourishing of mass culture alongside the founding of many elite cultural organizations—museums, symphony halls, libraries—that still stand as preeminent civic institutions. With an occasional eye to the present, this seminar examines the art, architecture, and cultural history of the Gilded Age.

    6 credits; Argument and Inquiry Seminar, Writing Requirement; offered Fall 2023 · Baird Jarman
  • ARTH 101: Introduction to Art History I

    An introduction to the art and architecture of various geographical areas around the world from antiquity through the “Middle Ages.” The course will provide foundational skills (tools of analysis and interpretation) as well as general, historical understanding. It will focus on a select number of major developments in a range of media and cultures, emphasizing the way that works of art function both as aesthetic and material objects and as cultural artifacts and forces. Issues include, for example, sacred spaces, images of the gods, imperial portraiture, and domestic decoration. 6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Jennifer Awes Freeman
  • ARTH 102: Introduction to Art History II

    An introduction to the art and architecture of various geographical areas around the world from the fifteenth century through the present. The course will provide foundational skills (tools of analysis and interpretation) as well as general, historical understanding. It will focus on a select number of major developments in a range of media and cultures, emphasizing the way that works of art function both as aesthetic and material objects and as cultural artifacts and forces. Issues include, for example, humanist and Reformation redefinitions of art in the Italian and Northern Renaissance, realism, modernity and tradition, the tension between self-expression and the art market, and the use of art for political purposes.

    6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Spring 2024 · Vanessa Reubendale
  • ARTH 140: African Art and Culture

    This course will survey the art and architecture of African peoples from prehistory to the present. Focusing on significant case studies in various mediums (including sculpture, painting, architecture, masquerades and body arts), this course will consider the social, cultural, aesthetic and political contexts in which artistic practices developed both on the African continent and beyond. Major themes will include the use of art for status production, the use of aesthetic objects in social rituals and how the history of African and African diaspora art has been written and institutionally framed.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 155: Islamic Art and Architecture

    This course surveys the art and architecture of societies where Muslims were dominant or where they formed significant minorities from the seventh through the nineteenth centuries. It examines the form and function of architecture and works of art as well as the social, historical and cultural contexts, patterns of use, and evolving meanings attributed to art by the users. The course follows a chronological order, where selected visual materials are treated along chosen themes. Themes include the creation of a distinctive visual culture in the emerging Islamic polity; cultural interconnections along trade and pilgrimage routes; and westernization.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 160: American Art to 1940

    Concentration on painting of the colonial period (especially portraiture) and nineteenth century (especially landscape and scenes of everyday life) with an introduction to the modernism of the early twentieth century. The course will include analysis of the ways art shapes and reflects cultural attitudes such as those concerning race and gender.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 165: Japanese Art and Culture

    This course will survey art and architecture in Japan from its prehistoric beginnings until the early twentieth century, and explore the relationship between indigenous art forms and the foreign (Korean, Chinese, European) concepts, art forms and techniques that influenced Japanese culture, as well as the social political and religious contexts for artistic production. 6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Kathleen Ryor
  • ARTH 166: Chinese Art and Culture

    This course will survey art and architecture in China from its prehistoric beginnings to the end of the nineteenth century. It will examine various types of visual art forms within their social, political and cultural contexts. Major themes that will also be explored include: the role of ritual in the production and use of art, the relationship between the court and secular elite and art, and theories about creativity and expression.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 171: History of Photography

    This course covers nineteenth and twentieth century photography from its origins to the present. It will consider formal innovations in the medium, the role of photography in society, and the place of photography in the fine arts.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 172: Modern Art: 1890-1945

    This course explores developments in the visual arts, architecture, and theory in Europe and America between 1890 and 1945. The major Modernist artists and movements that sought to revolutionize vision, culture, and experience, from Symbolism to Surrealism, will be considered. The impact of World War I, the Great Depression, and the rise of fascism will be examined as well for their devastation of the Modernist dream of social-cultural renewal. Lectures will be integrated with discussions of artists’ theoretical writings and group manifestoes, such as those of the Futurists, Dadaists, Surrealists, Constructivists, and DeStijl, in addition to select secondary readings.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 203: Intersectional Medieval Art

    Grounded in critical race theory, intersectionality, and queer theory, this class draws on a range of visual and textual sources to trace the histories, experiences, and representations of marginalized identities in the medieval world. We will consider gender, sexuality, and race in the context of Jewish, Christian, and Islamic cultures during the Middle Ages. This class will examine topics including transgender saints, demonic possession, and the so-called “monstrous races.” In contrast to misconceptions of a homogenous white Christian past, the reality of medieval Europe was diverse and complex, as reflected in its visual and material culture.

    6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Jennifer Awes Freeman
  • ARTH 209: Chinese Painting

    Since the tenth century in China, a tension emerges between art created as a means of self expression and works which were intended to display social status and political power and to convey conventional values. This course concentrates on the primary site of this tension, the art of painting. We will explore such issues as the influence of Confucian and Daoist philosophy on painting and calligraphy, the changing perception of nature and the natural in art, the politics of style, and the increasing dominance of poetry rather than narrative as a conceptual construct for painting.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 213: The Medieval Book as Art and Object

    Even more than knights, the Black Plague, or Monty Python, the Middle Ages is characterized by books, as the number of manuscripts from the period far exceed those of paintings, sculptures, mosaics, and other artworks combined. In this course, students will learn about the various forms that the book took on during its development over 1,000 years, through contextual study of patrons, creators, and redactors. Students will also develop an introductory familiarity with the tools of manuscript studies, including paleography and codicology through hands-on exercises.

    6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Spring 2024 · Jennifer Awes Freeman
  • ARTH 214: Queer Art

    Beyond surveying the rich history of arts by LGBTQA+ individuals, this course takes as its object of study the ways in which the arts have been used to question, undermine, and subvert the gendered and sexual norms of dominant cultures—in short, to queer them. In so doing, such visual and performative practices offer new, alternative models of living and acting in the world based on liberatory politics and aesthetics. This course will consider topics such as: censorship of queer artists; art of the AIDS crisis; activist performance; the sexual politics of public space; and queer intersections of race, class and gender in visual art among others.

    Prerequisites: Any one art history course not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 215: Cross-Cultural Psychology in Prague: Czech Art and Architecture

    This course will examine key developments in Czech visual art and architecture from the early medieval to the contemporary periods. Slide-based lectures will be supplemented by visits to representative monuments, art collections, and museums in Prague.

    Prerequisites: Participation in Cross-Cultural Psychology in Prague program not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 218: History of Performance and Body Art

    Is it theater? Is it dance? Is it music? Is it even art? Mocked in popular culture and censured by government officials, performance art has long been the art world’s most troublesome medium. This course provides an historical survey of performance and body art, beginning with the Futurists in early twentieth-century Italy and continuing throught the debates around publicly-funded work in mid-1990s United States. Over the course of the term, we will engage with concepts that are key to the study of performance, such as ephemerality, liveness, authenticity, and viscerality.

     

     

     

    6 credits; Intercultural Domestic Studies, Does not fulfill a curricular exploration requirement; offered Winter 2024 · Vanessa Reubendale
  • ARTH 220: The Origins of Manga: Japanese Prints

    Pictures of the floating world, or ukiyoe, were an integral part of popular culture in Japan and functioned as illustrations, advertisements, and souvenirs. This course will examine the development of both style and subject matter in Japanese prints within the socio-economic context of the seventeenth through twentieth centuries. Emphasis will be placed on the prominent position of women and the nature of gendered activity in these prints.

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 230: Princesses as Patrons circa 1500

    Three remarkable royal women (Queen Isabel of Castile, Anne of France, and Archduchess Margaret of Austria, regent of the Netherlands), linked by blood, marriage, and shifting dynastic alliances, provide a lens to examine patronage networks and collecting culture in France, Spain and the Netherlands circa 1500, at the transition from the late middle ages to the Renaissance. Isabel of Castile was exceptional as a sovereign queen; for most royal women power was indirect, delegated, and carefully masked, while the requirement to produce an heir was paramount. The course will consider the interplay of these constraints and the works of art these princesses commissioned and lived with by looking at topics like palace design, inventories of royal collections and the hierarchies of luxury arts they reveal, portraiture as an expression of dynastic piety and marriage politics, and the new prominence of painting as an independent and collectable medium.

    Prerequisites: Any one art history course not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 232: Spanish Studies in Madrid Program: Spanish Art Live

    This course offers an introduction to Spanish art from el Greco to the present. Classes are taught in some of the finest museums and churches of Spain, including the Prado Museum, the Museo Nacional de Arte Reina Sofía, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum, Toledo Cathedral in Toledo, and the Church of Santo Tomé.

    Prerequisites: Spanish 205 and approved participation in Madrid Program 6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Fall 2023 · Palmar Alvarez-Blanco
  • ARTH 235: Revival, Revelation, and Re-animation: The Art of Europe’s “Renaissance”

    This course examines European artistic production in Italy, Spain, France, Germany, and the Netherlands from the fourteenth to the sixteenth century. The aim of the course is to introduce diverse forms of artistic production, as well as to analyze the religious, social, and political role of art in the period. While attending to the specificities of workshop practices, production techniques, materials, content, and form of the objects under discussion, the course also interrogates the ways in which these objects are and, at times, are not representative of the “Renaissance.”

    Prerequisites: One Art History course or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 236: Baroque Art

    This course examines European artistic production in Italy, Spain, France, and the Netherlands from the end of the sixteenth century through the seventeenth century. The aim of the course is to interrogate how religious revolution and reformation, scientific discoveries, and political transformations brought about a proliferation of remarkably varied types of artistic production that permeated and altered the sacred, political, and private spheres. The class will examine in depth select works of painting, sculpture, prints, and drawings, by Caravaggio, Bernini, Poussin, Velázquez, Rubens, and Rembrandt, among many others.

    6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Spring 2024 · Jessica Keating
  • ARTH 240: Art Since 1945

    Art from abstract expressionism to the present, with particular focus on issues such as the modernist artist-hero; the emergence of alternative or non-traditional media; the influence of the women’s movement and the gay/lesbian liberation movement on contemporary art; and postmodern theory and practice.

    Prerequisites: Any one term of art history not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 241: Contemporary Art for Artists

    This course is a survey of major artistic movements after 1945 as well as an introduction to significant tendencies in current art and craft production. The goal of this course is to develop a familiarity with the important debates, discussions, and critical issues facing artists today. By the end of the course, students will be able to relate their own work as cultural producers to these significant contemporary artistic developments. Students will read, write about, and discuss primary sources, artist statements, and theoretical essays covering a wide range of media with the ultimate goal of articulating their own artistic project.

    Prerequisites: Any two studio art courses or permission from the instructor. Not open to students who have previously taken Art History 240 not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 246: What Has Been Happening in Modern Architectural Design?

    Architecture in our culture has become the art of solving spatial problems with large-scale constructions, at first in drawings but now as patterns on computer screens. This course examines four aspects of this Western building conceptualization during the last two hundred years, beginning with the exploration of it as the art of building and ending in coding–in our digital world today. We will focus on four fundamental moments in this historical development: 1) the emergence of the architect as a new exploring, reasoning figure in European culture in the early nineteenth-century (Labrouste, Ruskin, Viollet-le-Duc); 2) transforming into a broad conceiver of whole cities facing the demands of the late-nineteenth century urban “explosion” (Haussmann, Burnham); 3) but rapidly progressing to the abstraction of “building art,” a web of machine-like systems during the first half of the twentieth century (F. L. Wright, Le Corbusier, Hilberseimer); 4) to now sink—with struggles and false-starts—into our new computerized world.

    Prerequisites: Any one art history course not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 247: Architecture Since 1950

    This course begins by considering the international triumph of architecture’s Modern Movement as seen in key works by Mies van der Rohe, Le Corbusier and their followers. Soon after modernism’s rise, however, architects began to question the movement’s tenets and the role that architecture as a discipline plays in the fashioning of society. This course will examine the central actors in this backlash from Britain, France, Italy, Japan, the United States and elsewhere before exploring the architectural debates surrounding definitions of postmodernism. The course will conclude by considering the impact of both modernism and postmodernism on contemporary architectural practice.

    6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Fall 2023 · Ross Elfline
  • ARTH 260: Planning Utopia: Ideal Cities in Theory and Practice

    This course will survey the history of ideal plans for the built urban environment. Particular attention will be given to examples from about 1850 to the present. Projects chosen by students will greatly influence the course content, but subjects likely to receive sustained attention include: Renaissance ideal cities, conceptions of public and private space, civic rituals, the industrial city, Baron Haussmann’s renovations of Paris, suburbanization, the Garden City movement, zoning legislation, Le Corbusier’s Ville Contemporaine, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Broadacre City, New Urbanism and urban renewal, and planned capitals such as Brasília, Canberra, Chandigarh, and Washington, D.C.

    Prerequisites: Any one Art History course or instructor permission 6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Fall 2023 · Baird Jarman
  • ARTH 262: Architectural Studies in Europe Program: Community-Engaged Design

    In recent years, architects and urban planners have increasingly moved away from the total-design methods that often typified the Modern Movement of architecture in which the master planner oversaw every aspect of design “from the teaspoon to the city.” In its place, many designers have engaged local resources and forms of knowledge rooted in communities as the basis for architecture and urban planning schemes. This course considers case studies in community-based design practices by looking at both the products of such labor as well as the distinct processes that empowered residents to refashion their own surroundings from the ground up.

    Prerequisites: Participation in Architectural Studies in Europe program 3 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Ross Elfline
  • ARTH 263: Architectural Studies in Europe Program: Prehistory to Postmodernism

    This course surveys the history of European architecture while emphasizing firsthand encounters with actual structures. Students visit outstanding examples of major transnational styles–including Greek, Roman, Byzantine, Moorish, Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Neoclassical and Modernist buildings–along with regionally specific styles, such as Spanish Plateresque, English Tudor and Catalan Modernisme. Cultural and technological changes affecting architectural practices are emphasized along with architectural theory, ranging from Renaissance treatises to Modernist manifestos. Students also visit buildings that resist easy classification and that raise topics such as spatial appropriation, stylistic hybridity, and political symbolism.

    Prerequisites: Participation in OCS Architectural Studies Program 6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Baird Jarman, Ross Elfline
  • ARTH 264: European Architectural Studies Program: Managing Monuments: Issues in Cultural Heritage Practice

    This course explores the theory and practice of cultural resource management by investigating how various architectural sites and urban historic districts operate. Students will consider cultural, financial, ethical and pedagogical aspects of contemporary tourism practices within a historical framework that roots the travel industry alongside religious pilgrimage customs and the aristocratic tradition of the Grand Tour. Interacting with professionals who help oversee architectural landmarks and archaeological sites, students will analyze and assess initiatives at various locations, ranging from educational programs and preservation plans to sustainability efforts and repatriation debates.

    Prerequisites: Participation in OCS Architectural Studies Program not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 265: Architectural Studies in Europe Program: Urban Planning in Europe

    This course uses metropolitan areas visited during the program as case studies in the history and contemporary practice of urban planning. Students will explore cities with the program director and with local architects and historians—as well as in groups on their own. Specific topics include the use of major international events, such as Olympic Games and World’s Fairs, as large-scale planning opportunities, the development of municipal housing programs, the reduction of automobile traffic and mass transit initiatives, the adaptive reuse of former industrial districts, the use of cultural institutions as civic anchors, and more.

    Prerequisites: Participation in OCS Architectural Studies Program 3 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Baird Jarman
  • ARTH 265: Planning Utopia: Ideal Cities in Theory and Practice

    This course will survey the history of ideal plans for the built urban environment. Particular attention will be given to examples from about 1850 to the present. Projects chosen by students will greatly influence the course content, but subjects likely to receive sustained attention include: Renaissance ideal cities, conceptions of public and private space, civic rituals, the industrial city, Baron Haussmann’s renovations of Paris, suburbanization, the Garden City movement, zoning legislation, Le Corbusier’s Ville Contemporaine, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Broadacre City, New Urbanism and urban renewal, and planned capitals such as Brasília, Canberra, Chandigarh, and Washington, D.C.

    Prerequisites: Any one Art History course or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 266: Arts of the Japanese Tea Ceremony

    This course will examine the history and aesthetics of the tea ceremony in Japan (chanoyu). It will focus on the types of objects produced for use in the Japanese tea ceremony from the fifteenth century through the present. Themes to be explored include: the relationship of social status and politics to the development of chanoyu; the religious dimensions of the tea ceremony; gender roles of tea practitioners; nationalist appropriation of the tea ceremony and its relationship to the mingei movement in the twentieth century; and the international promotion of the Japanese tea ceremony post-WWII.

    Prerequisites: Requires concurrent registration in Studio Arts 236 6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Fall 2023 · Kathleen Ryor
  • ARTH 267: Gardens in China and Japan

    A garden is usually defined as a piece of land that is cultivated or manipulated in some way by man for one or more purposes. Gardens often take the form of an aestheticized space that miniaturizes the natural landscape. This course will explore the historical phenomenon of garden building in China and Japan with a special emphasis on how cultural and religious attitudes towards nature contribute to the development of gardens in urban and suburban environments. In addition to studying historical source material, students will be required to apply their knowledge by building both virtual and physical re-creations of gardens.

    6 credits; Arts Practice, International Studies; offered Spring 2024 · Kathleen Ryor
  • ARTH 288: Curatorial Seminar

    Through a discussion-based format, this course explores the nature of museums, the roles of contemporary curators, and the evolving functions of exhibitions. Theoretical investigations are complemented by practical, hands-on experiences. Working directly with artworks from the Carleton Art Collection, the group will prepare and execute an exhibition to be shown in the Perlman Teaching Museum. Students will conduct artist-specific research, draft interpretive text, formulate exhibition labels, and consider various exhibition formats. In the Fall 2018 seminar, students will create an exhibition that explores the roles text, symbols, and writing play when they are incorporated into visual art.

    Prerequisites: Any one Art History course or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 298: Seminar for Art History Majors

    An intensive study of the nature of art history as an intellectual discipline and of the approaches scholars have taken to various art historical problems. Attention as well to principles of current art historical research and writing. Recommended for juniors who have declared art history as a major.

    6 credits; Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Spring 2024 · Jessica Keating
  • ARTH 321: Arts of the Chinese Scholar’s Studio

    During the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in China, unprecedented economic development and urbanization expanded the number of educated elite who used their wealth to both display their status and distinguish themselves as cultural leaders. As a result, this period experienced a boom in estate and garden building, art collecting and luxury consumption. This course will examine a wide range of objects from painting and calligraphy to furniture and ceramics within the context of domestic architecture of the late Ming dynasty. It will also examine the role of taste and social class in determining the style of art and architecture.

    6 credits; International Studies, Literary/Artistic Analysis; offered Winter 2024 · Kathleen Ryor
  • ARTH 323: Idolatry

    Idolatry is an issue that has often determined how human beings interact with and conceive of the world around them. Focusing on the Judeo-Christian formulations of idolatry this course draws on a range of media, from the Hebrew Bible to the bones of saints and popular prints, as we analyze verbal and visual representations of the sacred and the profane. The driving questions will be: how have idols and idolaters been recognized in the past, and how have these various textual and visual formulations of idolatry shaped works of art from the ancient, medieval, and early modern worlds?

    Prerequisites: 200 level Art History course or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 324: The Sexuality of Jesus Christ

    Why did Renaissance artists produce hundreds of paintings of the Christ Child touching his genitals or presenting his genitals to someone, for instance his mother the Virgin Mary, inside the picture? Why did images of the dead Christ emphasize or exaggerate Jesus’s genitalia? And why were these phallic features of Renaissance religious painting not openly discussed and debated in art historical scholarship until 1983? These questions are at the heart of this course. In order to answer them we will examine the art critic Leo Steinberg’s groundbreaking book, The Sexuality of Christ in Renaissance Art and in Modern Oblivion (1983) and the dramatic responses Steinberg’s book engendered. 

    not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 327: A History of Campus Planning

    This course considers the history of academic campuses in the United States, using Carleton as a detailed case study. We will examine campus design in relation to social history, treating campuses as complex educational districts reshaped over time to adapt to changing institutional priorities. Topics will include the founding of sectarian colleges, land-grant universities, and state normal schools; collegiate gothic and modernist design; the G.I. Bill and other education policies; beaux-arts planning; sustainability initiatives; etc. Utilizing primary documents in the college archives, students will research Carleton’s planning history, culminating in a spring-term exhibition at the Perlman Teaching Museum.

    Prerequisites: Two Art History courses, or instructor consent not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 341: Art and Democracy

    What does it mean to say that a work of art is “democratic?” For whom is art made? And who can lay claim to the title “artist?” These questions animate contemporary art production as artists grapple with the problems of broadening access to their works and making them more socially relevant. In this course we will consider the challenges involved in making art for a sometimes ill-defined “public.” Topics to be discussed include: activist performance art, feminism, public sculpture, the Culture Wars, queer visual culture, and the recent rise of social practice art.

    Prerequisites: Any two Art History courses, or instructor permission not offered 2023–2024
  • ARTH 400: Integrative Exercise

    The integrative exercise for the art history major involves an independent research project, on a topic chosen by the student and approved by faculty members, resulting in a substantial essay due late in the winter term. One credit is awarded, usually in the spring term, for a formal presentation that contextualizes the project and summarizes the argument of the essay. The other five credits may be distributed in any fashion over the fall and winter terms. Art History 400 is a continuing course; no grade will be awarded until all six credits are completed. 1-6 credit; S/NC; offered Fall 2023, Winter 2024, Spring 2024