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Liberal Arts Courses

Design & Craft in Modern Culture

Course No. AH 362  Credits: 3.0

This course is an introduction to graphic and three-dimensional design from the Industrial Revolution to the present. We will examine modern and contemporary artists, styles, and objects across the design and craft disciplines, including finely crafted furniture and other objects designed for public and private spaces (architectural details and ornamentation, wallpaper, textiles, lamps, kitchenware, etc.); decorative objects such as ceramics, metalwork, and glass; objects of mass production and consumer culture (cars, trains, cameras, corporate and residential furnishings, electronic goods, etc.); art posters, private press books and illustrations, and innovative forms of communication graphics. Special consideration will be given to the social and cultural meanings of objects, issues related to the design and craft fields as professional occupations, and the art historical and theoretical relationships of the various design and craft disciplines beyond medium (material) specific concerns. Prerequisites: AC 150 and AC 250 or Corequisite: AC 250. 3 credits.

Art of China

Course No. AH 365  Credits: 3.0

The primary goal of this course is to explore the art and culture of China (including mainland China and Taiwan). Political, religious, social, and visual aspects of the art will be stressed in class. In order to understand Chinese art and civilization, we will look at art objects from terra-cotta pottery of the Neolithic period, bronze vessels, Buddhist murals and sculptures of the Tang era, literati paintings and imperial tastes of medieval China up to contemporary art. Subjects such as women artists and performing arts will be also discussed in this course. As the semester progresses, some additional readings may be assigned. Prerequisites: AC 150 and AC 250 or Corequisite: AC 250. 3 credits.

Asian Art Survey

Course No. AH 372  Credits: 3.0

This course serves as a “survey” or a window for the art of multiple cultures. This lecture/exercise/discussion-style course explores the art and visual culture of Asia, focusing on India, Japan and China. Political, religious, social, and visual aspects of the art will be stressed in class. In order to understand the art and civilization of these three countries, we will look at art objects ranging from ancient archeological finds, medieval architecture to modern and contemporary art. Subjects such as women artists, performing arts and animation will also be discussed in this course. The content of this course will be generally divided into pre-Modern, Modern & Contemporary eras in which art and visual culture will be discussed with geographic perspectives. As the semester progresses, some additional readings and films may be assigned. Each student is encouraged to find examples learned in this course and apply them to his/her intellectual development. Prerequisites: AC 150 and AC 250 or Corequisite: AC 250. 3 credits.

Art of East Asia

Course No. AH 373  Credits: 3.0

This lecture/discussion-style course is to explore the art and visual culture of East Asia, focusing on Japan and China. Political, religious, social, and visual aspects of the art will be stressed in class. In order to understand the art and civilization of these two countries, we will look at art objects from ancient archeological objects, medieval architecture to modern and contemporary art. Subjects such as women artists, performing arts and animation will also be discussed in this course. Prerequisites: AC 150 and AC 250 or Corequisite: AC 250. 3 credits.

American Crafts History

Course No. AH 376  Credits: 3.0

This course will necessarily focus on American crafts. However, an effort will be made to incorporate other expressions (especially non-western) into the mix too. For example, there are readings in Adamson on the Scandinavian slöjd system, Bauhaus aesthetics, the Japanese concept of mingei, the Indian notion of svadharma, the Mande blacksmiths of West Africa, and subversive (feminist) stitchery, in addition to writings by Anni Albers, Karl Marx, Frank Lloyd Wright, Ellen Gates Starr, George Nakashima, Carole Tulloch, Garth Clark and many more. Prerequisites: ACD 150 and ACD 250 or Corequisite: ACD 250. 3 credits.

Indigenous Cultures

Course No. AHSS 360  Credits: 3.0

This will be a lecture based, Anthropology course that focuses on the three major civilizations of Prehispanic Latin America; the Aztec, Maya, and Inca. We will study the three civilizations to understand the complexity of New World cultures, and to understand what their legacy to the Americas is today. Apply as a social science or non-Western Art History elective. Prerequisites: AC 150 and AC 250 or Corequisite: AC 250. 3 credits.

India: Culture & Society

Course No. AHSS 380  Credits: 3.0

Once the jewel in the crown of the British Empire, India has some 5,000 years of artistic tradition and architectural heritage. This course focuses on the essential role of the visual in India’s ancient and modern cultural and religious traditions. The creation and nature of visual imagery are explored in sculpture, temples, palaces, persons, symbols, times and places. From bustling cities to remote villages and pilgrimage sites, from beggar to Brahmin to Hindu gods and goddesses, the course explores the “divine image” in India. Prerequisites: AC 150 and AC 250 or Corequisite: AC 250. 3 credits.

Survey Contemporary Music

Course No. HC 209  Credits: 3.0

This course will give an overview of avant-garde music written in the twentieth (and twenty-first) centuries, with particular emphasis on the relationships between music and the visual arts. Discussions in class will focus on composers whose work helped define contemporary music while creating aesthetic parallels to the visual arts. Emphasis will be placed on listening to avant-garde and experimental music, and students will be expected to attend several recitals of contemporary music and write about their experiences. Students will also have to complete reading and listening assignments on a regular basis. 3 credits.

Meet Your Faculty view all

James "Colby" Chamberlain

Assistant Professor

Colby Chamberlain has previously taught art history at the Cooper Union, the City College of New York, and Col...more

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