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Department of History of Art

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Why study the history of art?

The study of the visual arts in their historical contexts enriches our understanding of human creativity and the human condition.

The curriculum introduces the student to the visual arts of the past and the present. Courses cover the arts of ancient and medieval Europe, modern Europe, the United States, Latin America, Africa, and East Asia, including China, Japan, Korea, and the art of Buddhism. Courses are offered in the history of photography, prints, and drawings.

Several introductory courses, that is, courses with no prerequisites, are offered every semester. These include 1- and 2-semester surveys in Western art (HA 100, HA 300, HA 150, and HA 151), HA 261 Introduction to Modern Art, HA 265 Introduction to Asian Art, HA 266 The Visual Arts of East Asia, HA 267 Art and Culture of Japan, HA 268 Art and Culture of China, HA 269 Art and Culture of Korea, and HA 330 Italian Renaissance Art.

Courses for Nonmajors

All courses are open to nonmajors if they have the necessary prerequisite, which in most cases is one of the introductory courses. An undergraduate adviser counsels nonmajors who need help selecting a course.

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