Major program: The discipline of art history is object-based cultural history. It is founded on the premise that artifacts embody and reflect the beliefs and values of the persons who made, commissioned, and used them. Unlike text-based historical disciplines, the history of art documents and interprets changes in human society by taking works of art and other objects of material culture as its primary sources. The history of art further requires the critical analysis and interpretation of written texts to help document and illuminate the contexts—social, economic, political, religious—in which artifacts are produced and used. Art history, therefore, is inherently interdisciplinary.

To complete the major in Art History, students must take one introductory course (numbered 100-199) and 9 courses numbered 200 or above.  The 9 upper-level courses must include at least two seminars (numbered 300-399).  The Art History major has two distinct programs of concentration: (1) the history of European, American, or African art, and (2) the history of Asian art.  Majors must also demonstrate proficiency in at least one foreign language.

Sample Courses:  Mughal India: Introduction to the Practice of Art History; Survey of Roman Archaeology and Art; Contemporary World Architectures; The Traditional Arts of Japan; Wagner and Modernism

Number of Professors: 17

Art History Building
Title: Student Spotlight
Art History Building

Noah Hutton

Art History Major, Class of '09


Experience: "In the spring of 2008 I worked with Professor John Paoletti to curate 'Pop to the Present,' a show at the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford. We spent many hours combing through the Atheneum's collection to pull works from 1970 to the present, and then wrote wall labels for each room of the show. I gave a gallery talk at the opening about trends in modern art explored by the works and the themes we used to guide the curation of each room and the show as a whole."