Undergraduate Courses

ART 103 S18
ART 103LAS 215 / ANT 233

Arts of the Americas: The First 5,000 Years


You live in the Americas: do you know about the prolific cultures who lived here before the European conquests? Are you curious about art, but wish you had a more hands-on understanding instead of seeing it behind glass? Do you wonder how a Eurocentric academic discipline might construct knowledge differently if considered from a non-European point of view? This course will provide both an introduction to art history through the ancient Americas, and to ancient American cultures, thoughts, and beliefs through their arts. Precepts will meet in the study room of the Art Museum, where we'll study up close its world-class Americas collection.

MW 10:00 am - 10:50 am
ART 209 E
ART 209

Between Renaissance and Revolution: Baroque Art in Europe

Thomas DaCosta Kaufmann

This course surveys major changes in European Art from the end of the Renaissance until the Age of Revolution c. 1800. Paintings, sculpture, prints, drawings, and architecture by such artists as Caravaggio, Rubens, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Velazquez, and Bernini will be considered in their political, religious, social and intellectual context. Extensive study of works of art at first hand in the Princeton University Art Museum, and possibly in New York.

MW 10:00 am - 10:50 am
ART 214 S18
ART 214

Contemporary Art: 1950 - 2000

AnnMarie Perl

A survey of postwar art from an international perspective, focusing on the major artistic movements in their historical contexts, including the Second World War, the Cold War, decolonization, the civil rights movement, feminism, globalization, and economic boom and recession. Lectures explore several themes including art's relationship to popular culture, the mass media, consumer society, historical memory, and political and social activism. Throughout, we account for the startling formal metamorphoses of art itself, as it is transformed from traditional painting and sculpture into new forms that challenged the very nature and limits of art.

TTh 11:00 am - 11:50 pm
ART 215EAS 215

Arts of China (10th Century to the Early 20th Century)

Cheng-hua Wang

This course will examine significant artistic developments through the study of paintings, calligraphy, ceramics, prints, architecture, and photography, and will relate them to political and sociocultural transformations in China. Students will gain an understanding of how to analyze Chinese art and its art-historical discourse as well as how to situate the arts within Chinese culture and history. The course is organized chronologically and will focus on the three arenas of art that motivated artistic creation during this period: the court, the sociocultural and political elites, and the commercial world.

TTh 2:30 pm - 3:20 pm
ART 252 S18
ART 252

Art as Science/Science as Art

Rachael Z. DeLue

Art and science may appear to have nothing to do with one another, but history suggests otherwise. For centuries, artists and image-makers have incorporated the concepts and claims of scientific inquiry into their practices. Scientists, in turn, have relied on images as both sources of and evidence for scientific knowledge. By examining the interaction of art and science in Europe and America from the early modern period to the present day, this course will investigate the diverse and complex ways in which art and science have intersected as well as the manner in which image-making has been understood as a form of scientific practice.

TTh 10:00 am - 10:50 pm
Art 289 S18
ART 289CLA 289

Art and Archaeology in Cleopatra's Multicultural Egypt

Sanda Heinz

From the time when Alexander the Great conquered Egypt until Cleopatra's death (c. 332-30BC), Egyptian culture underwent great change as numerous Greeks settled in Egypt, causing social disruption but also generating innovation and wealth. We will discuss how the visual arts were transformed by a new, intensely multicultural environment. Old traditions were preserved while new identities were explored in the realms of cult, art, daily life, and death. The course emphasizes the visual arts and archaeology, and includes close study of accessible museum objects as well as a hands-on mock excavation.

TTh 12:30 pm - 1:20 pm
ART 313 S18
ART 313MED 313 / ARC 313

Global Medieval Architecture


This course is a survey of architecture from the Middle Ages, a term used here to denote the period between 500 CE and 1500 CE. Global in both geographical scope (e.g. Europe, Africa, and Asia) and buildings surveyed, this course examines various architectural forms, techniques, and priorities across multiple landscapes. Organized by building type, the course is broadly comparative while examining buildings on their own terms. Subjects include palaces, castles, and fortress; roads and infrastructure; water architecture; houses and other domestic spaces; and urban planning and design.

TTh 11:00 am - 12:20 pm
ART 365LAS 370 / ANT 365

Olmec Art

Bryan R. Just

This course surveys Olmec and related material culture spanning roughly 2000-500 B.C., including architecture and monumental sculpture, ceramic vessels and figurines, and exquisite small-scale sculpture in jade and other precious materials. Of central theoretical importance is the question of how we understand and interpret art from a distant past, especially without the aid of contemporaneous written records. We will focus on original works of art, including works in the Princeton University Art Museum and in regional collections. Issues of authenticity, quality, and provenance related to these works will also be considered.

T 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART 367 S18
ART 367LAS 373 / ANT 379

Inca Art and Architecture



This course examines the art, architecture, and worldview of the greatest Andean civilization, the Incas. Conquered in 1532 by the Spanish, the Incas are known through archaeological and historical sources. Neither, however, can be taken at face value. The destructions of the conquest and differential preservation mean the archaeological record is incomplete. Likewise, Spanish historical sources present the Incas through European understandings, logic, and attentions. This course compares the two to reach a nuanced understanding of this ancient civilization. A spring break excursion will visit Cusco, Machu Picchu, and Lima.
MW 1:30 pm - 2:50 pm
ART 378AFS 378 / AAS 377

Post -1945 African Photography

Chika Okeke-Agulu

This course examines the role and status of photography in different phases of Africa's political, cultural and art historical experience since 1945. We explore how African photographers used the photographic medium in the service of the state, society and their own artistic visions during the colonial and post-independence eras. Photography's relationship with art and its social function in Africa will underlie our discussion.

W 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART 384 S18
ART 384AMS 394

Supply-side Aesthetics: American Art in the Age of Reagan

AnnMarie Perl

This course investigates the art and the aesthetics of the age of Reagan and Reaganism with an eye toward the present. How did supply-side economics transform the art world and art itself during the 1980s? How did certain period styles propagate Reaganism? Drawing on artworks from the PU Art Museum, art criticism, cultural criticism, political journalism, and an emerging history, we study critically sanctioned as well as controversial artistic movements of the period, including Neo-Expressionism, Graffiti Art, and Commodity Art, asking what this art can teach us about the age, in which an entertainer-turned-politician was elected president.

M 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART 393 S18
ART 393SLA 393 / AMS 392 / RES 393

Getting the Picture: Photojournalism in the U.S. and Russia

Katherine M.H. Reischl

Just as the Internet does today, the picture press of the last century defined global visual knowledge of the world. The pictures gracing the pages of magazines and newspapers were often heavily edited, presented in carefully devised sequences, and printed alongside text. The picture press was as expansive as it was appealing, as informative as it was propagandistic, regularly delivered to newsstands and doorsteps for the everyday consumer of news, goods, celebrity, and politics. Through firsthand visual analysis of the picture presses of both the U.S. and Russia, this course will consider the ongoing meaning and power of images.

TTh 1:30 pm - 2:50 pm
ART 401 S18
ART 401

Introduction to Archaeology

Nathan Arrington

An introduction to the history, methodologies, and theories of archaeology. The seminar discusses topics and problems drawn from a wide range of cultures and periods. Issues include trade and exchange; the origins of agriculture; cognitive archaeology (the study of the mind); biblical archaeology (the use of texts); artifacts in their cultural contexts; and the politics of the past. Emphasis on what constitutes archaeological evidence, and how it may be used. Required for majors concentrating in archaeology; open to all. No prerequisites

Th 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART409 S18
ART 409REL 409

The Archaeology of Jerusalem: Selected Topics

Haim Goldfus

In this course we will explore, discuss and dispute key archaeological topics pertaining to various aspects of the material multicultures of Jerusalem, from the time of Alexander the Great until its surrender to the Muslem Caliph, 'Umar. During these centuries, Jerusalem grew from a small city into "by far the most famous city, not of Judæa only, but of the East." It became the central sacred locale of the Jewish people, and the cradle of Christianity. During these times, it was twice a pagan city -Antioch in Jerusalem and Aelia Capitolina.

T 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART 425
ART 425EAS 425

The Japanese Print

Andrew Watsky

This seminar examines Japanese woodblock prints from the 17th through the 19th century. We will consider the formal and technical aspects of prints, the varied subject matter, including the "floating world" of the brothel districts and theatre, the Japanese landscape and urban centers, and the links between literature and prints, especially the re-working of classical literary themes in popular prints. The seminar will emphasize the study of prints in the Princeton University Art Museum; students will also research Japanese prints at an art gallery in New York and recommend one to be purchased and added to the collection of the Museum.

W 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART 431 S18
ART 431MED 431 / REL 431

Art, Culture, and Identity in Medieval Spain

Pamela Patton

Before the suppression of non-Christians in Spain and Portugal after 1492, three vibrant medieval cultures inhabited the peninsula: Muslims based in Al-Andalus, Christians based in the northern Spanish kingdoms, and Sephardic Jews throughout both realms. Their coexistence transformed their visual culture in ways that resonated well beyond Iberian borders, from Atlantic colonialism to modern identity politics. This course asks how the contacts, conflicts and compromises provoked by "living with" each other shaped artistic traditions and cultural identity in a land both enriched and destabilized by its own diversity.

Th 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
Art 455s18
ART 455ECS 456

Seminar in Modern Art: The Origins of Abstraction

Through close examination of original works of art, complemented by close readings of primary sources and recent texts in the history and criticism of modern art, this seminar will address tensions between figurative art and the beginnings of non-objective art in European painting and sculpture of the late 19 c. / early 20 c. We will also explore how those tensions between "figuration" and "abstraction" relate to the forms of seeing variously demanded by works of art composed in a range of media and aiming to achieve a diversity of effects. Our close looking will focus on works by Rodin, Cézanne, Matisse, Brancusi, Kandinsky, and others.
Th 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm
ART 497 S18
ART 497

The Art of Paul Cézanne: In and Out of the Studio


This seminar takes the contrast of what happened in and outside the studio of the French painter Paul Cézanne (1839-1906) as a structure for gaining focus upon his complex practice. The course will examine analogous contrasts in his art and its interpretations, ranging from working in a controlled or an uncontrollable space to the separation and merging of genres. Emphasis will be placed on studying artworks in the original, including an installation of landscapes by Cézanne and earlier artists at the Princeton University Art Museum, and an exhibition of the artist's portraits at the National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C.

MW 1:30 pm - 4:20 pm