Featured course: ARTH 101 Pyramids to Pagodas

Coffin of Bakenmut c. 1000-900 BCE Egypt, Thebes, Third Intermediate Period, late Dynasty 21 to early Dynasty 22 Gessoed and painted sycamore fig Cleveland museum of Art, Gift of the John Huntington Art and Polytechnic Trust, 1914.561

Have you ever wondered why the Egyptians built their giant pyramids? How the ancient Greeks and Romans made such beautiful pottery, sculptures, and mosaics? Or how the great churches of Europe came to be? If you have had any interest in the visual and material cultures of the premodern world, then this class is for you. This introductory survey course, which will be taught remotely with synchronous and asynchronous elements, explores the history of global architecture and visual arts from prehistory through the late medieval period (around 1400 CE). From the temples of ancient Rome to monumental Asian sculptures of the Buddha all the way to towering Mesoamerican pyramids and French cathedrals, this course offers a broad overview of major works of art and emphasizes the historical and cultural contexts in which art and architecture were produced. Students will explore the functions, styles, and historical interrelationships of individual works of art and architecture. A study of a diverse range of objects will help students understand aspects of the various cultures that produced them, as well as the relevance of these works of art and their cultures to our own time. Strong emphasis will be placed on objects in the Cleveland Museum of Art’s collection.

For any questions about this course, please email Reed O’Mara at rao44@case.edu.




Summer 2021 featured courses are shared at the request of the instructor.
For more information on this course and all Summer 2021 offerings, visit the course list.