Spring 2021 Courses

Ishtar Gate

ARHS 1300 - From Mummies to Gladiators: Art and People of the Ancient Mediterranean and Ancient Middle East

Introduces the arts and societies of the major cultures of the ancient Mediterranean and ancient Middle East (Egypt, Mesopotamia, Bronze Age Aegean, Greece, Etruscan, and Roman), primarily c. 4,000 B.C.-350 A.D., from the pyramids of the pharaohs to the official Roman adoption of Christianity. Focuses on art and architecture as a part of human life, from everyday activities to fabulous spectacles and the afterlife.

  • Dr. Stephanie Langin-Hooper
  • Monday/Wednesday 11:00am-11:50am and Friday lab section Virtual
  • UC: Creativity & Aesthetics, Historical Contexts, Global Engagement
  • CC: Creativity & Aesthetics, Civics and Individual Ethics
  • Photo: The Ishtar Gate, Babylon, glazed brick, built in the reign of King Nebuchadnezzar (c. 604-562 BCE), Vorderasiatisches Museum, Berlin.

ARHS 1308 - Epic of Latin America

This course presents a panorama of art, culture, and society in Latin America from ancient times to the present. Topics include Pre-Columbian Empires; Spanish Colonial Cities; Revolution, Reform and Modernism; Candomblé, Santería, and Vodou; Indigeneity and Nationalism. The course pays special consideration to Latin America’s enduring legacies and dynamic processes of change. This is an introductory survey intended for students of all academic and professional interests: no previous art history courses or experience with Latin America necessary.

  • Asiel Sepúlveda
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday 10:00-10:50am
  • Umphrey Lee 0242
  • UC: Creativity & Aesthetics, Historical Contexts
  • CC: Creativity and Aesthetics
Süleymaniye Mosque

ARHS 1319 - Architecture of the Islamic World

This course is intended as an introduction to the rich and varied architecture found across the Islamic world, from medieval Spain to contemporary Indonesia, from the brick mosques of Mali to the gardens of Isfahan. From its beginnings in seventh-century Arabia, Islam expanded rapidly across much of the Mediterranean and central Asia, incorporating new languages, cultures, and artistic traditions. Rather than conforming to a specific type, Islamic architecture proved to be highly adaptable, encouraging visual experimentation with new motifs and techniques as well as localized styles. Along with the historical development and aesthetic philosophies of Islamic architecture, students will learn how these manifold traditions have shaped current dialogues about the Islamic world today.

  • Dr. Abbey Stockstill
  • Tuesday/ Thursday 11:00am- 12:20pm
  • Virtual
  • CC: Creativity & Aesthetics
  • Photo: The Süleymaniye Mosque, built c. 1557, Istanbul, Turkey

ARHS 1325 - The Global Baroque

In "The Global Baroque" we will examine the interconnected world of the 16th and 17th centuries, through the lens of the artworks that moved throughout it. We will consider the ways in which these active objects reshaped how people thought about themselves and the ever-expanding world. We will also see the role they played in making today’s globalized society.

  • Dr. Adam Jasienski
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday 12:00-12:50pm
  • Virtual
  • CC: Historical Contexts and Human Diversity
  • Photo: Andrés Sánchez Galque, Portrait of Don Francisco de Arobe and His Two Sons, Domingo and Pedro, 1599, Museo Nacional del Prado, Madrid

ARHS 3304 - The Aztecs of Mexico: Art and History

This course surveys the art and culture of the Aztec of central Mexico. Lectures and discussion will address the history of the Aztec as a people and an empire; the materials of Aztec art, including flint, turquoise, jade, bird feathers, hardwoods, and cloth; Aztec gods, cosmos, and religion; chocolate, chile, and other Aztec foods; the European invasion and its aftermath.

  • Dr. Adam Herring
  • Tuesday/Thursday 11:00am-12:20pm
  • Virtual
  • UC: Humanities & Fine Arts, Historical Contexts, Global Engagement, Human Diversity
  • CC: Historical Contexts, Human Diversity
  • Photo: The Imperial Headdress of Aztec Ruler Montezuma (Moteucçoma), now in Vienna, Austria

ARHS 3365 - Race and Gender in Visual Culture

This course focuses on the ways in which race and gender have been defined through visual culture from the Middle Ages through the 20th century. Inherently intertwined with postcolonial theory and sociopolitical critique, notions of race and gender have never been stable, and how we view these categories today has been shaped by centuries of debate. Historiography, literature, and technology have all had a hand in confirming these categories, and this course will question the validity and usefulness of such narratives. Students will gain an understanding of how identity can be formed through media like painting, photography, and film, and how those same media can be used to define those communities as “other,” to often violent effect.

  • Dr. Abbey Stockstill
  • Tuesday/ Thursday 2:00 pm- 3:20 pm
  • Virtual
  • UC: Humanities & Fine Arts Depth
  • CC: Creativity & Aesthetics
  • Photo: A depiction of the Queen of Sheba, from the Bellifortis written by Konrad Kaiser, c. 1402; Saats- und Universitätbibliothek, Göttingen, Germany.

ARHS 3367 - History of Photography I: Origins-1940

Given the ubiquity of photography today, it is difficult to visualize our world before the invention of the camera. The purpose of this course is to examine the history of different photographic technologies from its origins in the late eighteenth century through World War II. In many ways analogous to the history of the computer, the development of photography (from the camera obscura, the daguerreotype, and the calotype to the wet collodion process, the Brownie Kodak, and today’s digital images) can be reduced to a series of competing technologies, a kind of taxonomic history. In the last two decades it has become fashionable to ignore the technical aspects of the history of photography, but that robs it of a central part of its history.

  • Dr. Randall C. Griffin
  • Tuesday/ Thursday 9:30 am-10:50 am
  • Virtual
  • UC: History, Social, & Behavioral Sciences
  • CC: Technological Advances and Society (Pending)
  • Photo: Jacques-Henri Lartigue, Le Grand Prix, 1913

ARHS 3374 - American Art and Architecture, 1865-1940

The purpose of the course is to provide a survey of American painting, sculpture, decorative arts, and architecture from 1865-1940. Over those years the nation went from being mainly rural to urban, and insular to international, with the world’s largest economy. It also saw a cultural transformation in the art world with the birth of great art museums and the appearance of canonical painters, sculptors, photographers, and architects. The course will examine the artists’ techniques and working methods, and also situate their creations within specific cultural contexts. Broad underlying issues such as nationalism, class, race, and gender, will be discussed. The course also emphasizes the nation’s diversity of artists, both in terms of race and gender.

  • Dr. Randall C. Griffin
  • Tuesday/Thursday 12:30pm-1:50pm
  • Virtual
  • UC: Humanities & Fine Arts; History, Social, & Behavioral Sciences
  • CC: Creativity & Aesthetics
  • Photo: Grant Wood, American Gothic, 1930

ARHS 3375 - Art in the Fight for Freedom: Afro-Latin American Art

The course focuses on art in the diaspora of African peoples in Latin America, from the sixteenth century to the present. The course will analyze the survival and reinvention of African artistic values, principles, media, forms and institutions in Latin America in their confrontation with artistic practices derived from Western but also indigenous art systems, in the midst of slave trade and slavery, as well as in the struggles for freedom and social equality.

  • Dr. Roberto Conduru
  • Monday/Wednesday/Friday 11:00-11:50am
  • Owen Fine Arts Center 1060
  • CC: Creativity & Aesthetics
  • Photo: Ayrson Heráclito, Bori Cabeça de Oxóssi (Bori Oshosi Head), 2009, Print on cotton paper, 23 3/5 × 23 3/5 in.

ARHS 4310 - Seminar on Ancient Art

Topic: SMU’s “Egyptian Mummy” at the Dallas Museum of Art: Ethics and New Approaches to the Exhibition of Ancient Human Remains

This practicum seminar will address the urgent ethical issue of the display of the bodily remains of ancient people in art museums. Seminar readings will introduce students to the broad literature on this topic from ethical, archaeological, and art historical perspectives. We will then address the specific case of the coffin and mummified body of an ancient Egyptian woman that is owned by Southern Methodist University and currently on loan to, and displayed at, the Dallas Museum of Art. Drawing upon current best practices for the display of ancient human remains, students will develop real-world proposals for alternate curatorial strategies for exhibiting (or not) the remains of this ancient person. These proposals will be formally presented to the Director of the Bridwell Library at SMU at the conclusion of the course.

  • Dr. Stephanie Langin-Hooper
  • Tuesday 2:00pm-4:50pm
  • Umphrey Lee 228
  • UC: Information Literacy
  • CC: Oral Communication (Pending), Writing in the Major
  • Photo: The cartonnage and mummified human remains of an Ancient Egyptian person, c. 1200 BCE. Owned by Bridwell Library,
    Southern Methodist University, on loan and on display at the Dallas Museum of Art.

ARHS 4399 - Research and Methods in Art History

This seminar introduces students to key texts and contemporary debates in the research and writing of art history. Each week is devoted to a fundamental critical issue raised in the study of images and objects, including form, materials, content, context, biography, iconography, race, gender, sexuality, ideology, and economics. Students read, discuss, and compare the many methods adopted by art historians and use those methods in discussions of objects in Dallas/Fort Worth collections. The course also contains a research and writing workshop component in which students are introduced to research tools, taught writing skills specific to art history, and guided through the process of conducting scholarly research. Enrollment is required for art history majors.

  • Dr. Anna Lovatt
  • Wednesday 2:00pm-4:50pm
  • Dallas Hall 157
  • UC: Information Literacy
  • CC: Oral Communication, Writing in the Major
  • Photo: Tracy Hicks, Freedman’s Field, 1990-94, wood table with pottery shards, broken bottles, old watch parts, fragments of porcelain dolls, coins, buttons, oxidized silverware, and rusted metal, found on the site of Freedman’s Town, Dallas. Collection: Dallas Museum of Art.