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In examining a number of exceptional artworks of many different types and drawn from many cultures and periods, this subject explores how art can be a window onto different times, peoples and places across the world, as well as onto our own beliefs and the contemporary world. Each lecture will focus on one artwork from a watershed moment in the history of art. Artworks examined will include a wide range of media, from performance art to rock art, calligraphy to altarpieces, painting and sculpture to decorative arts. As well as introducing students to current issues in art history and visual studies, and to a wide variety of art practices, mediums and traditions seen through multiple perspectives, it will equip students with a toolkit for examining, understanding and writing about artworks. The subject is taught by a team of scholars from the University of Melbourne art history program. On completing the subject students will have acquired basic skills in the analysis of art, including an understanding of the principal issues and methodologies in the discipline of art history. Students will also have been introduced to the breadth, diversity and shared concerns of diverse cultures and histories.
Intended learning outcomes
Student who complete this subject should:
- have acquired an understanding of the history of visual forms and basic skills in visual analysis;
- have acquired an appreciation of the principal methods of analysis employed in the discipline of art history;
- have acquired the capacity to discuss the nature and meaning of visual forms;
- have acquired abilities in essay writing relevant to the discipline of art history, including presenting an argument, marshalling and documenting evidence, and basic bibliographic skills.
- be able to research through the competent use of the library and other information sources, and be able to define areas of inquiry and methods of research in the preparation of essays;
- be able to conceptualise theoretical problems, form judgements and arguments and communicate critically, creatively and theoretically through essay writing, tutorial discussion and presentations;
- be able to communicate knowledge intelligibly and economically through essay writing and tutorial discussion;
- be able to manage and organise workloads for recommended reading, the completion of essays and assignments and examination revision; and
- be able to participate in team work through involvement in syndicate groups and group discussions.
Last updated: 29 April 2020