The material on this page is from the 1996-97 catalog and may be out of date. Please check the current year's catalog for current information.
Professor Lent, Acting Chair (winter semester and Short Term); Associate Professors Harwood, Chair (on leave, winter semester and Short Term) and Corrie; Assistant Professor Rand; Mr. Feintuch, Mr. Nicoletti, Mr. Heroux, and Ms. Morris
The Department offers courses in the history of art and in studio practice. The history of art is a field of cultural study in which works of art and related documents are studied for the purpose of understanding visual culture from the distant past to the present. This study also provides insights into the intellectual currents, religious doctrines and practices, and social institutions of the past, with attention to issues of class, gender, race, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. In studio activity, practice work in the visual media involves the study of other art and artists and provides the basis for discussion of questions of knowledge, perception, and expression in art.
The major combines work in both the history of art and studio. Students emphasizing art history and studio take many of the same courses but fulfill different requirements. Majors emphasizing studio art must take three courses in the major periods in the history of Western art distributed in the following manner: Modern, Renaissance/Baroque, and Ancient/ Medieval. They must also take Art 212, five additional courses in studio, and one Short Term unit, for a total of at least ten courses. In addition, students are required to produce a senior thesis project (Art 458). The opportunity to do an honors thesis is completely at the discretion of departmental faculty.
Majors emphasizing the history of art must take one studio course (any studio course or Short Term unit in studio is acceptable; art history students are advised to take their studio course before their senior year); Art 374 (art history majors are advised to take 374 by the end of their junior year if possible); four advanced courses in the history of art, one in each of the following areas: Ancient (231, 232), Medieval (251, 252, and 225 on special application), Renaissance and Baroque (262, 263, 264, 265, 266, 271, 272, 285), and Modern (280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 286, 287, 288); and four additional advanced courses in the history of art for a total of at least ten courses. Art 241 (Islamic Art) can be used for either the Ancient or Medieval requirement but not both. Art history Short Term units are not counted among these ten courses and are optional. In addition, students are required to write a senior thesis (457 or 458). Topics for theses are subject to departmental approval. The opportunity to do an honors thesis is completely at the discretion of the departmental faculty. Students who wish to continue in the history of art on a graduate level should obtain a reading knowledge of French and German, and are strongly advised to include additional courses in art theory such as Art 226 and an upper-level seminar such as Art 365, 375, or 376 in their curriculum. Students planning graduate study in architecture or design are advised to confer with the Department Chair early in their college careers in order to plan appropriate undergraduate programs.
The following courses meet the major period requirements noted above: 1) Ancient: 231, 232, and 241; 2) Medieval: 241, 251, 252, and 225 on special application; 3) Renaissance/Baroque: 262, 263, 264, 265, 266, 271, 272, 285; 4) Modern: 280, 281, 282, 283, 284, 286, and 287.
100. Introductory Studies in Art. A survey of Western art with emphasis on the development of the student's ability to "see" art and of his or her critical judgment in interpreting the form and content of a work of art. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 60 (15 per section). E. Harwood.
202. Color. An examination of color theory and its application to the art of painting. No particular aptitudes are required for this studio course, and problems of technique are kept to a minimum. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 18. D. Lent.
203. Three-Dimensional Design with Clay. An exploration into the designing and sculpting of objects in clay, using such traditional techniques as slab construction, casting, and throwing on the potter's wheel. Students work with clay, plaster, paper, and found objects to solve problems in figurative and abstract design. Drawing is part of some assignments. The course serves as an introduction to ceramics, painting, and Drawing II, and is the prerequisite for Ceramics I (Art 217). Open to first-year students. There is a laboratory fee. Enrollment is limited to 15 per section. P. Heroux.
205. Figure Sculpting with Clay. A study of the figure through the understanding of anatomy and the use of a model. Preliminary drawings are used to make reliefs, fully dimensional heads, and other figurative sculpture in clay. The special problems of firing ceramic sculpture are covered. Prerequisite: Art 203 or 212. Open to first-year students. Written permission of the instructor is required. There is a laboratory fee. Enrollment is limited to 15. P. Heroux.
212. Drawing I. A study of drawing through practice and analysis of the work of great draftsmen. Drawing is considered as an expressive medium in itself and as a method of exploration of the complex forms of nature. This course prepares students for etching and painting courses. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 18 per section. R. Feintuch, P. Heroux, J. Nicoletti, D. Lent.
213. Painting I: Color Fundamentals. Problems in representation stressing color. The student learns about painting by concentrated study of the works of painters from the past and present and by painting from nature. Prerequisite: Art 203 or 212. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 10. D. Lent.
214. Painting I. Problems in representation and pictorial structure. The student learns about painting by concentrated study of the works of painters from the past and present and by painting from nature. Prerequisite: Art 203 or 212. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 10. J. Nicoletti.
217. Ceramics I. An introduction to the ceramic process covering the nature of clay, application of glazes, firing procedures, wheel and handformed work, design, and aspects of the history of pottery. There is a laboratory fee. Prerequisite: Art 203 or s20. Written permission of the instructor is required. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 15. P. Heroux.
218. Photography I. A study of the camera's use for observation and expression of experiences. In this introductory course the student learns concepts and techniques of basic black and white photography and its expressive possibilities. There is a laboratory fee. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 12 per section. E. Morris.
225. Iconography: Meaning in the Visual Arts from Late Antiquity to the Renaissance. Unraveling political, sociological, religious, and philosophical messages is an intriguing process essential to the study of art history. The course focuses on a selection of iconographic problems including the political content of Late Roman sculpture, the use of the body in religious images depicting figures such as Adam and Eve, and the depiction of women such as the Virgin Mary and female saints, and ends with the study of classical subjects in Renaissance painting, such as Venus and Mars, and the political content of Elizabethan portraits. Traditional and recent modes of analysis are investigated. Open to first-year students. Recommended background: Art 100 or the equivalent or all (or any) of the following: Art 241, 252, 262, 263, 264, 265, or 266. Enrollment is limited to 25. R. Corrie.
226. Philosophy of Art. An introduction to the major problems of philosophy of art, including a discussion of attempts to define art, a treatment of problems concerning the interpretation of individual works of art, and a discussion of recent theories of modern and postmodern art. This course is the same as Philosophy 241. Open to first-year students. D. Kolb.
231. Greek and Roman Art and Architecture. A survey of the sculpture and architecture of Greece and Rome from the eighth century B.C. through the fifth century A.D. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 50. E. Harwood.
232. Pyramid and Ziggurat. A survey of the art and architecture of two "cradles" of Western civilization. The course covers the ancient worlds of Egypt and the Near East. Open to first-year students. R. Corrie.
241. The Art of Islam. Art of the Islamic world from its roots in the ancient Near East to the flowering of Safavid Persia and Mughal India in the sixteenth, seventeenth, and eighteenth centuries. Developments are traced through architecture, painting, ceramics, textiles, and metalwork. Consideration is given to the continuity of the Near Eastern artistic tradition and Islamic art in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Open to first-year students. R. Corrie.
251. The Age of the Cathedrals. An investigation of medieval architecture from the Early Christian era to the end of the Gothic period in Europe, including Russia and the Byzantine East. Emphasis is placed on the development of Christian architecture and the emergence of the Gothic cathedral in the context of European political and social history before 1500. Open to first-year students. R. Corrie.
252. Art of the Middle Ages. In Europe from the Early Christian era to the end of the Gothic age, from A.D. 300 to 1450, precious objects, manuscripts, wall paintings, and stained glass were produced in great quantities. The course traces the development of these and other media, including tapestry and sculpture. Emphasis is placed on the changing images of men and women in medieval art. The roles of liturgy, theology, and technological and social changes are stressed. Open to first-year students. R. Corrie.
265. The Early Renaissance: Interpreting European Art, 1250-1450. This course investigates the art and architecture of Northern and Southern Europe between 1250 and 1450. Students analyze the impact of theology, liturgy, social change, urbanism, gender, and social class on visual culture. Artists considered include Cimabue, Duccio, Giotto, Fra Angelico, Donatello, Brunelleschi, Jan van Eyck, and Rogier van der Weyden. Open to first-year students. Not open to students who have received credit for Art 263. R. Corrie.
266. The High Renaissance and Mannerism: Interpreting European Art, 1450-1600. This course concerns the art and architecture of Northern and Southern Europe between 1450 and 1600, with emphasis on art in the court and the city. Students study several methods of analysis as they investigate the impact of religion, technology, urbanism, gender, sexual orientation, social class, and national identity on the visual arts. Artists discussed include Leonardo, Raphael, Michelangelo, Bronzino, Giovanni Bologna, Titian, Palladio, Dürer, Grünewald, Holbein, Bruegel, and Bosch. Open to first-year students. Not open to students who have received credit for Art 264. R. Corrie.
271. Italian Baroque Art. A survey of painting, sculpture, landscape and urban design, and architecture in Italy during the seventeenth century. Artists studied include Caravaggio, the Carracci, Guercino, Bernini, and Boromini. Recommended background: Art 264. Open to first-year students. E. Harwood.
272. Northern Baroque Art. A survey of painting, landscape design, and architecture in France and the Low Countries during the seventeenth century. Artists and places studied include Rubens, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Poussin, Lorrain, Vaux-le-Vicomte, and Versailles. Recommended background: Art 271. Open to first-year students. E. Harwood.
280. Rococo and Romanticism. A study of European painting from 1700 to 1850. Artists studied include Watteau, Hogarth, David, Ingres, Constable, Turner, Friedrich, Geriault, and Delacroix. Open to first-year students. E. Harwood.
281. Realism, Impressionism, and Post-Impressionism. An intensive investigation of French painting from 1850 to 1900. Artists studied may include Courbet, Manet, Degas, Monet, Cézanne, Seurat, Van Gogh, and Gauguin. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 50. E. Harwood.
282. Modern European Art. This course concerns European art from 1900-1940, with special attention to Cubism and Surrealism. While the course surveys art of the period, its primary goal is less to provide a comprehensive historical overview than to examine the various interpretive strategies that have been used both to develop and to understand these apparently radical innovations in visual representation. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 50. E. Rand.
283. Contemporary Art. This course concerns contemporary art, with a focus on art of the U.S. created in the 1960s, 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Topics to be discussed include: changing definitions of art; the relation of art production to the mechanisms for exhibition, criticism, and sale; the contentious interaction of form and content; and the increased attention of artists and critics to matters of class, race, gender, and sexual orientation. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 18 per section. E. Rand.
284. American Art. This course concerns American art made during the first half of the twentieth century, from the Ashcan School through abstract expressionism, with a focus on artists of United States citizenship or affiliation. Of particular concern are the problematics of gender, sexuality, national identity, artistic marginality, and other political matters that have affected the making and study of art produced in this period. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 50. E. Rand.
285. Renaissance and Post-Renaissance Gardens and Landscape Architecture. The course examines the development and transformation of a major art form, the landscape garden, from its beginnings in fifteenth-century Italy through its later manifestations in seventeenth-century France and eighteenth-century England. While the garden provides the visual and historical framework for the course, the pervasive theme is humanity's changing attitudes toward and interpretations of nature and the world. Open to first-year students. E. Harwood.
286. Romantic Landscape Painting. The importance of landscape painting in the romantic period is a clear reflection of complex cultural change. The course examines the forms and meanings of the varied approaches to landscape painting in England, Europe, and the United States, between 1750 and 1850. Artists and groups considered may include Constable, Turner, Friedrich, the Pre-Raphaelites, and the Barbizon and Hudson River schools. Open to first-year students. E. Harwood.
287. Women and Modern Art. This course considers women as makers, viewers, and objects of modern art, with an emphasis on the twentieth century. Topics include gender assumptions in dominant conceptions of "the artist," competing theories about whether and why women's art differs from men's art, the effects of sexism, heterosexism, racism, and economic discrimination on women's artistic production, and the representation by both women and men of femaleness, sexuality, motherhood, and lesbianism. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 18 per section. E. Rand.
288. Visualizing Race. This course considers visual constructions of race in art and popular culture, with a focus on the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. General topics to be discussed include the role of visual culture in creating and sustaining racial stereotypes, racism, and white skin privilege; the effects upon cultural producers of their own perceived race in terms of both their opportunities and their products; and the intersections of constructions of race with those of gender, class, ethnicity, and sexuality. Open to first year students. Enrollment limited to 54. E. Rand.
290. Modern Architecture. An introduction to modern European and American architecture. This course examines practical, social, and aesthetic dimensions related to the development of Modern architecture. Special consideration is given to styles and collective movements such as the Bauhaus, the International Style, the Chicago School, and Post- Modernism. Architects considered at length include Frank Lloyd Wright, Le Corbusier, Mies van der Rohe, and Robert Venturi. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 40. E. Harwood.
312. Drawing II. Continued study in drawing, emphasizing drawing from the human figure, the development of conceptual drawing attitudes, and drawing as a medium of lyric expression. Prerequisite: Art 203 or 212. Enrollment is limited to 18. J. Nicoletti.
314. Painting II. Continued work on problems of structure and pictorial expression. Prerequisite: Art 213 or 214. Enrollment is limited to 10. J. Nicoletti, R. Feintuch.
316. Etching I. An introduction to the medium of etching. Artists studied include Rembrandt, Whistler, Edward Hopper, and Isabel Bishop. Prerequisites: Art 212 and 312. Enrollment is limited to 10. D. Lent.
317A. Etching II. Continued study of etching leads to painterly techniques and the use of color. Artists studied include Goya, Picasso, and Cassatt. Prerequisite: Art 316. Recommended background: Art 280, 284, 286. Enrollment is limited to 10. D. Lent.
317B. Etching II: Advanced. Further study of etching featuring the selection and development of thematic material. Enrollment is limited to 10. Prerequisite: Art 316. Recommended background: Art 317A. D. Lent.
318. Photography II. The second-semester black-and-white photography class offers a refinement of technical skills introduced in Art 218. The further development of ideas and aesthetic perceptions is emphasized. There is a laboratory fee. Prerequisite: Art 218 or compatible experience. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 15. E. Morris.
360. Independent Study. Independent study for individual students, under the direction of a member of the Department. Permission of the Department is required. Students are limited to one independent study per semester. Staff.
361. Museum Internship. Students who have arranged to participate in volunteer internships at the Bates College Museum of Art may receive one course credit by taking this course at the same time. Depending on the needs of the museum, internships may involve gallery lecturing or research. The same arrangement is possible for students who obtain internships at the Portland Museum of Art. Students may have internships throughout their college careers, but may receive credit for one semester only. Prerequisite: one course in the history of art. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to available positions. R. Corrie.
365. Special Topics. A course or seminar offered from time to time and reserved for a special topic selected by the Department. Staff.
374. Seminar in the Literature of Art. This course considers the history and methodology of art history, with an emphasis on recent theoretical strategies for understanding visual culture. Topics to be discussed include stylistic, iconographic, psychoanalytic, literary, feminist, Marxist, historicist, lesbian/gay/queer, and postmodern approaches to the study of art. Prerequisites: two advanced courses in the history of art and permission of the instructor. Enrollment is limited to 15. E. Rand.
375. Issues of Sexuality and the Study of Art. This course considers issues of sexuality as they affect the study of art, with a focus on lesbian and gay sexualities. Topics include the value and politics of identifying homosexual artists and images, the interconnections of homosexuality, homoerotics, and homosociality, and the implications of work in lesbian and gay studies for the study of art in general. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 15. E. Rand.
376. Seminar in Medieval and Renaissance Art. This seminar examines the visual culture of Europe and the Mediterranean Basin in the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. In different years the seminar focuses on specific subjects which may include manuscript illumination, regional architecture, Crusader art, and medieval urbanism.
376A. Venice: Painters and Merchants. An exploration of the structures of Italian urbanism through an investigation of Venetian art, from the earliest mosaics to the paintings of the eighteenth century. Topics studied include the mosaics of San Marco and works by Bellini, Giorgione, and Titian, which are discussed in the context of the physical structure of the city and its economic and social history. Special attention is paid to the representation of women. Prerequisite: one advanced course in the history of art. Recommended background: one of the following: Art 251, 252, 262, 263, 264, 265, 266. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 15. R. Corrie.
376B. Kiev to Palermo: Art of the Byzantine World, 843-1453. The resurgence of the visual arts following the end of iconoclasm in the Byzantine empire in 843 saw the production of works in an immense range of media: icons, mosaic and fresco painting, ivory carving, metalwork, textiles, and manuscript illumination. This seminar studies the history of these media in their social, political, and religious contexts within the Byzantine empire and in areas such as Russia, Italy, Central Europe, and the Crusader states. This seminar coincides with The Glory of Byzantium, an exhibition opening March 1, 1997 at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Prerequisite: an advanced (200-level) course in the history of art. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 15. R. Corrie.
457, 458. Senior Thesis. Guidance in the preparation of: (a) a project in studio art accompanied by a short essay or (b) an essay in the history of art concerned with original works of art. Students register for Art 457 when completing thesis in the fall semester, and for Art 458 when completing thesis in the winter semester.
Short Term Units
s20. Raku Pottery. Raku, which has its roots in Japan, is a technique reserved for low-fire pottery used in the traditional tea ceremony. The coarse clay and rapid firing give the ware a rough and spontaneous appearance, unique to Raku. Western potters have become intrigued by the process and have adapted its use in a very broad way. The unit explores this technique and its creative potential. There is a laboratory fee. Enrollment is limited to 15. P. Heroux.
s21. Salt and Soda Firing. This unit explores traditional and new techniques in hand-building with clay. Emphasis is on the vessel as a sculptural form, relief tiles, and installations for public space. Salt and soda firing glaze the work in a unique way that enhances every surface. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 15. P. Heroux.
s22. Feminism and the Body in Art and Literature of the 1970s. A major feminist project of the 1970s was to reappropriate, reexamine, and reconceptualize the female body. This unit studies visual and textual contributions to this effort in political, historical, and cultural context. Major artworks and relevant texts to be discussed include Judy Chicago's Dinner Party, Mary Kelly's Post-Partum Document, Monique Wittig's Lesbian Body, Helen Cixous's Portrait of Dora, and performance works by Hannah Wilke, Adrian Piper, and others. Enrollment is limited to 25. E. Rand.
s23. Art and Artists in New York. Works of art often have a sensuous presence that doesn't show in slides or other reproductions, but that is central to the works' meanings. In this unit students spend five weeks in New York looking at modern and contemporary art in museums, galleries, alternative spaces, and artists' studios. Issues of making and meaning are addressed and art is discussed in terms of formal, psychological, cultural, philosophical, and political ideas. Permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 10. R. Feintuch.
s26. The Museum. A study of the emergence of the twentieth-century museum. The unit traces its development from the private collections of the Middle Ages and the Renaissance to its present role as a public institution. Discussion in the second half of the unit focuses on the administration of the museum. Topics include acquisitions and the development of collections, care and installation of works of art, and recent developments in the construction and architecture of museums. Day trips are planned. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 15. R. Corrie.
s27. From Antiquity to Renaissance in Florence and Rome. In Florence and Rome, students investigate the persistence of the classical aesthetic in Italy through the centuries from Ancient Rome to the Renaissance. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 10. R. Corrie.
s29. Just View It: Popular Culture, Critical Stances. Although many people view popular culture as an entertaining escape from serious matters, others consider such products as movies, television, magazines, music videos, romance novels, and the world of Barbie worthy of serious critical study. This unit considers popular culture and recent critical approaches to it. Issues to be discussed include the validity of distinctions among "high," "popular," and "mass" culture and the ideological messages and effects of popular culture. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 25. E. Rand.
s32. The Photograph as Document. A major category of photographs is called "documentary photography." Documentary photographs generally describe human social situations and aim at being objective transcriptions of events into images. This unit views changes in style and methodology from the classical documentary approaches of the 1930s and 1940s to contemporary modes of documentary photography. Students produce photographic projects that address the concept of documentary photography and a photograph's function as a document with its claim to veracity and authenticity. Images that challenge and manipulate the notion of the photograph as witness and testimony are also examined. Prerequisite: Art 218 or permission of the instructor to preregister. Recommended background: Art 100 and 283. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 15. E. Morris.
s33. The Fine Arts in England, 1550-1900. The unit examines the bountiful English art world from the rise of the Elizabethan "prodigy houses" through the Arts and Crafts Movement. Particular attention is devoted to the architectural history of London after 1666; the country house: its architecture, art collections, and landscape gardens; the Gothic Revival; and the flowering of romantic landscape painting. Recommended background: Art 251, 271, 280, and 285. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 10. E. Harwood.
s35. Materials and Techniques of Drawing and Painting. Guided individual research into various drawing media including etching, as well as consideration of the problems of landscape painting, figure drawing, and similar genera. Each Short Term will focus on one of the above categories. The Short Term registration material will include a description of the particular focus for the Short Term at hand, including specific prerequisites. Permission of the instructor is required. Open to first-year students. Enrollment is limited to 10. J. Nicoletti, D. Lent.
s37. Landscape Painting and Drawing in Tuscany, Italy. The unit consists of field trips in and around the town of San Casciano in Tuscany, Italy, and takes full advantage of the unique landscape and cultural opportunities of the region. Studio work alternates with regular visits to regional cities (Florence, Siena, Arezzo, San Sepolcro, etc.) to study painting, sculpture, and architecture. Prerequisites: two studio courses. Recommended background: Art 212, 213 or 214, 263, 264. Open to first-year students. Written permission of the instructor is required. Enrollment is limited to 10. J. Nicoletti.
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Last modified: 08/05/96 by PD