HISTART 615-001

First Year Graduate Seminar:
Toward a Posthumanist Art History

M 4:00pm - 7:00pm
3 Credit Seminar

This introductory graduate seminar guides students to exercising critical reading and visual and material thinking. It provides a foundational platform for participants to review historiographies of art in various contexts and the discourses that have shaped and shaken the practices of the discipline. In addition to reading some established theories and historiographical texts, we will explore new possibilities of practicing art history, including in areas of ecological thinking, digital virtualization, and neo-materialisms and neo-humanism. Between the continuity of disciplinary methods and cutting-edge thoughts, we aim to reconsider such art-historical categories as form, matter, medium, image, scale, artifice, agency, and spacetime. Throughout the course, students will sharpen their tools used to critique a given mode of historiography, to think with visual sources (even if, and especially when, they represent non-visual phenomena or matters), and to experiment with original approaches to conducting a research topic. The ultimate goal of the course is to delineate new horizons of approaching art history, towards which students will be expected to chart their own prospects.

Image: Shitao (1642-1702), Man in a House beneath a Cliff, late 1690s. Album leaf, ink and color on paper. New York: C. C. Wang Family Collection.