The online version of the Caltech Catalog is provided as a convenience; however, the printed version is the only authoritative source of information about course offerings, option requirements, graduation requirements, and other important topics.
Art 11. Selected Topics in Art History. 9 units (3-0-6); offered by announcement. Instructor: Staff.
Art 23. Major Figures in Art. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. A course devoted to the study of a single artist of world importance, the name of the artist to be announced prior to registration. This study, grounded in the artist’s life and, where possible, his/her writings, will analyze and interpret his/her major works in chronological sequence in their artistic and historic contexts, and attempt, by close aesthetic examination, to account for their greatness—and, sometimes, their failure. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 46. The Age of the Great Cathedrals. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. A study of the arts of Western Europe from the disintegration of the Roman Empire circa A.D. 476, to the 14th century. The diverse historical forces at work during this long period produced a correspondingly varied art. Emphasis will be on the later Middle Ages, circa 1200–1350, a period marked by a synthesizing of inherited traditions into a comprehensive whole. Major monuments of architecture, such as the cathedrals of Notre Dame, Chartres, Reims, Cologne, Strasbourg, and Westminster, as well as sculpture, illuminated manuscripts, mosaics, panel painting, and stained glass will be examined within the aesthetic and social framework of countries as culturally diverse as France, Italy, Germany, Spain, and Britain. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 49. From Van Eyck to Rembrandt: Northern European Art, 1400–1650. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. A survey of artistic developments in Northern Europe and Spain from the late Middle Ages through the Renaissance and baroque periods. The course will focus upon the complexity of northern art, from its origins in the still forceful medieval culture of 15th-century Flanders, to its confrontation with Italian Renaissance humanism in the 16th century. The effects of this cultural synthesis and the eventual development of distinct national schools of painting in the 17th century are examined through the works of the period’s dominant artists, including Van Eyck, Dürer, Holbein, Velázquez, Rubens, Hals, and Rembrandt. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 50. Baroque Art. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. A survey of the arts of painting, sculpture, and architecture from the late 16th century to the late 18th century. A confident and optimistic age, the baroque fostered the rise of national schools that produced artistic giants like Bernini, Caravaggio, Rubens, Rembrandt, Velázquez, Claude, Poussin, Tiepolo, and Guardi. The masterpieces of these and other artists reflect the wide variety of baroque art and will be studied within the context of certain commonly held ideals and of the differing economic, political, and religious systems that characterized the period. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 51. European Art of the 18th Century: From the Rococo to the Rise of Romanticism. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. The course will encompass 18th-century European painting, sculpture, architecture, and the decorative arts. During this period a variety of styles and subjects proliferated in the arts, as seen in the richly diverse works of artists such as Watteau, Boucher, Chardin, Fragonard, Tiepolo, Canaletto, Hogarth, Gainsborough, Blake, David, Piranesi, and Goya, which reflect a new multiplicity in ways of apprehending the world. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 52. British Art. 9 units (3-0-6), third term. A survey course on British painting, sculpture, and architecture in the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries. By examining the works of well-known British artists such as Hogarth, Blake, Gainsborough, Reynolds, Constable, and Turner, the class will focus on the multiplicity of styles and themes that developed in the visual arts in Britain from 1740 to 1840 and are part of the wider artistic phenomenon known as romanticism. This introduction to the British visual arts will be enriched by several class meetings in the Huntington Art Gallery. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 55. Art of the 19th Century. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. A survey of 19th-century art with an emphasis on French and English art between ca. 1770 and 1880. This course will focus on issues including competing conceptions of the public for art, the rise of photography, the development of the avant-garde, and the place of art in urban culture. Instructor: Bennett.
Art 66. Ancient Art: From the Pyramids to the Colosseum. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. A survey of the art of the earliest civilization of the ancient near east and Mediterranean from the Bronze Age to A.D. 300. The major monuments—architectural, sculptural, and pictorial—of Mesopotamia, Egypt, the Aegean, Greece, and Rome will be examined as solutions to problems of form and function presented by communal political, economic, and religious life. Emphasis will be placed on the creation of Greco-Roman art, the foundation of the Western artistic tradition. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 67. Italian Renaissance Art. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. A basic study of the greatest achievements of Italian painting, sculpture, and architecture in the 15th and 16th centuries. Masterpieces by a succession of artists such as Giotto, Masaccio, Brunelleschi, Donatello, Alberti, the Bellini, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Titian, Veronese, and others will be examined for their formal beauty and power, and studied as manifestations of individual genius in the context of their time and place: Italy, fragmented politically, yet at the peak of its cultural dominance. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 68. Modern Art. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. An in-depth survey of international painting and sculpture of the first half of the 20th century. Crucial movements, among them fauvism, German expressionism, cubism, dadaism, surrealism, and American abstraction and realism between the two world wars, will be studied, and masterworks by a number of major artists of this period (e.g., Picasso, Matisse, Nolde, Duchamp, Magritte, Hopper) will be closely examined. Instructor: Robbins.
Art/H 69. Modernism in the Visual Arts, 1850-1945. 9 units (3-0-6); second term. This course examines European and American painting, sculpture, photography, and other visual arts from 1850 to the mid-twentieth century. An era encompassing many diverse and significant developments in modern art, this period includes Impressionism, Post-Impressionism, Symbolism, Expressionism, Cubism, Dada, Surrealism, and Abstract Expressionism. Artworks from these movements will be studied in light of their social, cultural, and political contexts, with particular attention paid to issues of gender and representation, and to the different forms of abstraction developed and theorized by early twentieth-century painters. The class will also focus on the relationships of colonialism, urbanism, rising industrialism, and international conflict to the visual culture of the period. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 70. Traditions of Japanese Art. 9 units (3-0-6), first term. An introduction to the great traditions of Japanese art from prehistory through the Meiji Restoration (1868–1912). Students will examine major achievements of sculpture, painting, temple architecture, and ceramics as representations of each artistic tradition, whether native or adapted from foreign sources. Fundamental problems of style and form will be discussed, but aesthetic analysis will always take place within the conditions created by the culture. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 71. Arts of Buddhism. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. An examination of the impact of Buddhism on the arts and cultures of India, Southeast Asia, China, Korea, and Japan from its earliest imagery in the 4th century B.C.E. India through various doctrinal transformations to the Zen revival of 18th-century Japan. Select monuments of Buddhist art, including architecture, painting, sculpture, and ritual objects, will serve as focal points for discussions on their aesthetic principles and for explorations into the religious, social, and cultural contexts that underlie their creation. Not offered 2013–14.
E/H/Art 89. New Media Arts in the 20th and 21st Centuries. 9 units (3-0-6). For course description, see Engineering.
H/Art 119. Art Worlds. 9 units (3-0-6). For course description, see History.
Art/H 153. West Coast Art since the Sixties. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. A study of the development of art from 1960 to the present up and down the United States’ West Coast. We will look at a variety of movements, such as the Chicano Mural movement, Light and Space art and Funk art in conjunction with a number of cultural and social questions, such as the role of immigrant communities in developing a West Coast identity, the role of California subcultures in forming a distinctly West Coast aesthetic and the drawbacks and advantages of working outside East Coast and European cultural centers. Along with close readings of primary and secondary materials, we will visit collections and exhibitions throughout the L.A. area. Instructors: Robbins.
Art/H 154. Collaborations between Art and Technology. 9 units (3-0-6); third term. From optical experiments in drawing and painting to hacktivism and neuroaesthetics, this course explores the history of collaborations between artists and scientists from the 1960s to the present. Our focus will be on artists and artists groups, such as Robert Smithson, Hans Haacke, Experiments in Art and Technology (EAT), Eduardo Kac, and the Critical Art Ensemble and exhibitions such as ‘The Responsive Eye’ (MoMA 1965), ‘Software’ (Jewish Museum 1970), and the ‘Art and Technology Project’ (LACMA 1971). Students will engage in a research project that focuses on a recent collaboration between art and science. Instructors: Robbins.
Art/H 155. Making and Knowing in Early Modern Europe. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. This course examines interactions between art, science, and technological innovation in Europe and its colonies ca. 1500–1750. It will explore influential arguments that have linked the growth of empiricism in the sciences to naturalism in early modern visual art. Major topics may include the place of artistic training in scientific discovery, the “maker’s knowledge” tradition, and relations of mind to body in early modern visual culture. Objects and images from local collections will be central to analysis. Not offered 2013–14.
Art 169. The Arts of Dynastic China. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. A survey of the development of Chinese art in which the major achievements in architecture, sculpture, painting, calligraphy, and ceramics will be studied in their cultural contexts from prehistory through the Manchu domination of the Qing Dynasty (1644–1911). Emphasis will be placed on the aesthetic appreciation of Chinese art as molded by the philosophies, religions, and history of China. Instructor: Wolfgram.
Art/H 183. Spectacle: From the Court Masque to the Great Exhibition of 1851. 9 units (3-0-6); first term. This course examines the ways in which spectacle has been used in early modern and nineteenth-century Europe. Drawing on aesthetic writings about the impact of size and scale on audiences, but also examining historical accounts of the workings of spectacle on spectators, it looks at a number of case studies focusing on the technologies spectacles employed, the sites at which they were staged, the purposes and aims of their creators, and the controversies they engendered. Topics covered include English court masques, the rituals of absolute monarchy (especially those of Louis XIV), the changing presentation of plays and works of art, the public exhibition of torture, punishment, and human dissection, cabinets of curiosity and scientific demonstrations, religious, civic, and political ritual commemoration, the development of mixed media, panoramas and dioramas, and the staging of international exhibitions. Not offered 2013–14.