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World Art History Certificate: Elective Courses

Lecture/Seminar

Marisol: A Pop Art Superstar

Thursday, February 9, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Glamorous, sophisticated, worldly, and wickedly funny, Marisol Escobar, better known simply as “Marisol,” was the most famous and successful female Pop artist. Art historian Nancy G. Heller examines Marisol’s major works and career, with particular attention to the difficulties of a female Latinx artist in a world dominated by white men. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Astrology in Renaissance Art: Representation and Meaning

Thursday, February 9, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

The intersection of art and astrology played a key role during the Renaissance, particularly for patrons like the Medici family, who used astrological imagery to promote themselves and their increasing de-facto power in Florence. Art critic Claudia Rousseau examines the development of astrological practices during the period, their cultural importance, and the artworks they influenced. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

War and Pieces: The Met Cloisters and the Lens of History

Friday, February 10, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

When the Cloisters—the branch of the Metropolitan Museum devoted to the art of the medieval world—opened in 1938, not a word was spoken about the threat of war looming over Europe. Yet ironically, the Cloisters’ very foundations stand in witness to the devastating impact of centuries of war and revolution on artistic heritage. Barbara Drake Boehm, curator emerita of the Met Cloisters, examines the museum’s finest works of art against the backdrop of history. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

The Regency World of Jane Austen: Art, Architecture, Culture

Saturday, February 11, 2023 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Emma Woodhouse, Elizabeth Bennet, Anne Elliot, and the Dashwood sisters may be fictional heroines, but their creator Jane Austen set their adventures in romance against the very real social and historical backdrop of Regency England. Art historian Bonita Billman brings the era to life as she surveys Regency manners and fashions, the personalities who dominated the public imagination, and the stylish spa town of Bath, where many of Austen’s characters made appearances. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Ancient Art Collections of Rome

Monday, February 13, 2023 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Many of Rome’s lesser-known museums contain some of the world’s most significant Greco-Roman art. Rocky Ruggiero, an expert in Renaissance art, explores the ancient art collections of the Capitoline Museums, the Ara Pacis Museum, the Villa Giulia, and the Palazzo Massimo. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Winslow Homer: Capturing an America in Transformation

Wednesday, February 22, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET

In-Person Program Only: Winslow Homer (1836–1910) has often been called America’s favorite painter. His work was both quintessentially American and quietly replete with narratives for and about people of all races and ages. Drawing on his new biography, Winslow Homer: American Passage, William R. Cross offers an illustrated look at the man behind the art and examines Homer’s role in American culture. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Wildfire: The Life and Works of Edmonia Lewis

Thursday, February 23, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Nineteenth-century artist Edmonia Lewis, the daughter of a Black man and a Native American woman, overcame poverty and racial and gender-based discrimination to become an enormously successful professional sculptor based in Rome. Art historian Nancy G. Heller discusses Lewis’s place within the broader context of American Neoclassicism and African American art history. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Studio Arts Course

Composition

Monday, February 27, 2023 - 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

This course examines fundamental concepts of composition and their practical application in studio-art practice, offering participants tools to enrich their own work as well to analyze and appreciate visual art in general. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Masterworks by Matisse at the Barnes Foundation

Thursday, March 9, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Drawing on the riches of one of the greatest post-impressionist and early modern art collections in the world and remarkable high-definition Deep Zoom technology, Barnes Foundation educator Penny Hansen guides a series of live virtual tours that closely examine the paintings and lives of 3 artists who helped shape a truly revolutionary period in the history of art. This session focuses on the gallery's collection of Henri Matisse artworks. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Ancient Egypt Through its Art and Architecture

Saturday, March 11, 2023 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

The secret to understanding the daily life and culture of ancient Egypt under its great rulers and pharaohs is right before our eyes—in its art and architecture. Using evidence from the most recent archaeological discoveries, Egyptian specialist Jacquelyn Williamson surveys the social and historical realities of this civilization from its early pyramids through its art created under King Akhenaten, who upended centuries of tradition to create new artistic conventions. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

The Tale of Shuten Doji

Tuesday, March 14, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

The 14th-century Japanese legend The Tale of Shuten Doji was a popular subject in visual and performing arts during the Edo period. Art historian Yui Suzuki examines the illustrated tale in depth, focusing on both the conventional and cryptic meanings that the artworks convey. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Masterworks by Renoir at the Barnes Foundation

Thursday, March 16, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Drawing on the riches of one of the greatest post-impressionist and early modern art collections in the world and remarkable high-definition Deep Zoom technology, Barnes Foundation educator Penny Hansen guides a series of live virtual tours that closely examine the paintings and lives of 3 artists who helped shape a truly revolutionary period in the history of art. This session focuses on the gallery's collection of Pierre-August Renoir artworks. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Masterworks by Cézanne at the Barnes Foundation

Thursday, March 23, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Drawing on the riches of one of the greatest post-impressionist and early modern art collections in the world and remarkable high-definition Deep Zoom technology, Barnes Foundation educator Penny Hansen guides a series of live virtual tours that closely examine the paintings and lives of 3 artists who helped shape a truly revolutionary period in the history of art. This session focuses on the gallery's collection of Paul Cézanne artworks. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Thomas Gainsborough: Beyond the Blue Boy

Thursday, March 23, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Thomas Gainsborough, one of the most important British artists of the second half of the 18th century, was also one of England’s earliest homegrown geniuses. Art historian Bonita Billman examines Gainsborough’s lush painterly technique, iconic masterworks (especially those in America), and his influence on painting. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

From Towers to Palaces: An Architectural Tour of Medieval Florence

Friday, March 31, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

Florentine architecture in the 13th and 14th centuries was characterized by soaring towers, massive fortress-like palaces, breathtakingly beautiful basilicas, and public buildings that set an important precedent for the future palace builders of wealthy patrician families. From her home in Tuscany, art historian Elaine Ruffolo traces how the built environment of medieval Florence clearly reflects the historical development of the city at the dawn of the Renaissance. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Course

Artists and Friends in the World of Manet: Cézanne and Pissarro, van Gogh and Lautrec

Thursday, April 13, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET

Before Vincent van Gogh and Paul Cézanne created their celebrated works in Provence, these outsiders had profound experiences and friendships in Paris that would alter their artistic paths. In a 3-session course, popular Smithsonian Associates speaker Paul Glenshaw examines two such relationships: Cézanne’s friendship with Camille Pissarro and van Gogh’s with Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec in the vibrant avant-garde art scene pioneered by Édouard Manet. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

The Uffizi Gallery: An Unrivaled Collection

Friday, April 14, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

The Uffizi Gallery has long been regarded as one of the most important museum collections in the world, boasting some of the greatest masterpieces of the Florentine Renaissance. From her home in Tuscany, art historian Elaine Ruffolo leads a lively two-part virtual walk through the Uffizi as she discusses its history, architecture, Medici connections, and an in-depth examination of the best of the remarkable painting collection. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Three Masterpieces of Etruscan Art

Tuesday, April 18, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:15 p.m. ET

The Etruscans hold a reputation for mystery, but the truth is we know a lot about these creative ancient Italians and their remarkable contributions to the history of art. Art historian and author Laura Morelli takes a deep dive into the heart of ancient Italy as she examines three masterworks of painting, sculpture, and metalwork that reflect Etruscan culture’s unique place in the Mediterranean world. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Cultural Heritage Sites of India

Saturday, April 22, 2023 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

From India’s elaborately decorated Ajanta Caves to the splendor of the Taj Mahal, UNESCO’s list of World Heritage Sites offers a spectacular window into South Asia’s past. Art historian Robert DeCaroli highlights palaces, grand temples, royal mausoleums, and more that showcase the subcontinent’s abundant historically and culturally significant destinations. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Studio Arts Course

Drawing Light… and How the Masters Did It   

Tuesday, April 25, 2023 - 6:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET

In this class, learn the strategies artists such as Rembrandt, Daumier, Cézanne, and Van Gogh used to harness light and unify, intensify, and give dimension to their images. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

20th-Century Oceanic Art

Tuesday, April 25, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET

For over 40,000 years, people have lived and traveled among the islands that dot the vast expanse of the Pacific Ocean, establishing thriving and interconnected states and societies and creating artworks that express the excitement and vitality of their lives. Art historian Kevin Tervala surveys the artistic practice across 20th-century Oceania, examining the ways that European colonization and decolonization, the Pacific theater of World War II, and the increasingly globalized nature of the economy transformed the work that artists did and the forms that they produced. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Isabella Stewart Gardner: A Global Vision of Art

Tuesday, April 25, 2023 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. ET

Isabella Stewart Gardner assembled an extraordinary collection of art from diverse cultures and eras and built a Venetian-style palazzo in Boston to share her exquisite treasures with the world. Diana Seave Greenwald, assistant curator of the collection at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, shines new light on Gardner as a trailblazing patron and collector who created a museum unprecedented in its curatorial vision. She also discusses how Gardner’s far-flung journeys to fill that museum—recorded in her exquisitely crafted collaged travel albums—reveal the global influences of this legendary collector. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Studio Arts Course

Composition

Monday, May 1, 2023 - 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

This course examines fundamental concepts of composition and their practical application in studio-art practice, offering participants tools to enrich their own work as well to analyze and appreciate visual art in general. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Private Art Collections of Rome, Part 1

Monday, May 1, 2023 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Many of Rome's greatest art treasures are displayed in the private collections of historically influential Roman families. Fortunately, a number of these art collections are now museums open to the public. Rocky Ruggiero, an expert in Renaissance art, surveys four of these private collections and explains how the artworks held there helped shape the Italian Renaissance. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Studio Arts Course

Drawing in Museums: Smithsonian American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery - In Person

Saturday, May 6, 2023 - 1:30 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Guided by instructor Paul Glenshaw, learn the art of copying and develop your rendering and composition skills at the Smithsonian American Art Museum and National Portrait Gallery. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo: Contrasts in Greatness

Saturday, May 13, 2023 - 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Leonardo and Michelangelo: These towering geniuses of Western art disliked each other intensely. But their fraught relationship was fueled by a secret mutual fascination and a fierce competition that spurred them to new levels of artistic achievement. Art historian Nigel McGilchrist depicts the two men as perfectionists and brilliant craftsmen of radically different kinds who revolutionized painting and sculpting. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Tour

Frank Lloyd Wright: Masterworks in the Midwest

May 21 - 25, 2023, 6:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

Frank Lloyd Wright left an indelible signature on the American Midwest: a legacy of buildings that trace the arc of his career as one of world’s most significant and innovative architects. A 5-day tour led by historian Bill Keene offers a one-of-kind opportunity for a close-up look at a wide range of Wright’s designs in Illinois and Wisconsin, as well as visits to seminal works by other architects of the early and mid-20th century. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Lecture/Seminar

The Art of Christo and Jeanne-Claude: Outdoors, Outsized, and Out of the Ordinary

Wednesday, May 24, 2023 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

The public art projects of Christo Javacheff and Jeanne-Claude Denat de Guillebon (better known as Christo and Jeanne-Claude) used acres of colorful fabric to cover an entire building, line a path, or surround islands. They took years to accomplish but remained in place for no more than two weeks. Art historian Nancy G. Heller analyzes the couple’s most important works and their long-lasting influence. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1/2 credit)