Master of Liberal Studies

Study in Taos


New Art in New Mexico

FNAR 7363
July 6-14, 2014

This course presents contemporary art that straddles the 21st century and sets the stage to explore new art in situ while studying at SMU's Taos campus. The course focuses on 50 familiar artists, their signature styles, and how they changed the course of art history. In particular, this course helps students develop confidence looking at new art, enchancing their own aesthetic judgment and expanding their awareness of how the southwestern environment impacts artists and collectors. This course may be applied to the following curricular field concentrations: Arts and Cultural Traditions, American Studies and Humanities.

Instructor: Joan Davidow
Maybe you've heard Joan Davidow during drive time on KERA's Morning Edition or during All Things Considered. Her commentaries about today's art and the urban environment air monthly. Or maybe you heard her insightful arts reviews in the 1980s during her six years as weekly broadcaster on KERA 90.1, when she also aired national stories on NPR. Director Emerita after nine years as Dallas Contemporary Director, Davidow transformed the local arts space into a non-collecting contemporary museum, raising $4.4 million in capital funds to purchase and move it to its heady industrial quarters in the Design District. Gaining national attention, The Wall Street Journal recognized Dallas Contemporary as a respected museum for presenting group exhibitions of young artists to watch. The international magazine, ArtNews, spotlighted Davidow's prior ten years at the Arlington Museum of Art for developing Texas' premier venue for cutting-edge art. Statewide recognition came with a Texas Monthly profile naming Davidow the most imaginative and adventurous museum director working in Texas.

Wildflowers of the Southern Rockies

July 6-14, 2014

Taught on location at the Fort Burgwin campus in Taos. The southern Rocky Mountains in north-central New Mexico are renowned for spectacular shows of wildflowers in late July and August. The various ecological zones, Alpine, Canadian, Transition, and Upper Sonoran, have a distinctive array of wildflowers allowing for an identification of plant families that is unequaled in the United States. The course introduces flowering plant families in various settings, with daily field trips to different habitats within the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. Students learn the botanical language, plant names, and classifications, and collect and mount 20 specimens for display. An additional 1 hour of credit may be earned by writing a paper on one plant family (register separately for SCCL 7105). 

Instructor: Dr. John Ubelaker
Dr. John Ubelaker, is a Professor Biological Sciences and is highly recognized as an outstanding teaching Professor at SMU. In 1993 the University recognized Dr. Ubelaker as an Altschuler outstanding lecturer by awarding him a Distinguished Lecturer Award of the University. He has taught on the Taos campus for the past 20 years and knows the area extremely well. He is currently working on several monographs of plants from this region of New Mexico.

For more details about these programs, please contact the MLS Office at: 214-768-4273 or email us at: